Another venture into the Border Hills on a good walking day. Drove down the A701 to Kirkurd - its a small hamlet off the main road to Peebles. There's parking for a couple of cars by the disused church.
Headed up an old road and turned South West onto the path up the hill - you go past one gate on your right then through another just short of a small tree plantation.
This path - clearly marked on the OS map, rises gently up the side of Gallowberry Hill giving great views over towards Tinto Hill and Black Mount
Soon the path swings North East and you go through a gate after which it disappears. However there is a faint track leading South East to the edge of the huge afforested area. There the track picks up again and you go through a gate into the forest on a very good track.
It's a bit creepy - the chant from The Wizard of Oz kept going through my head - when they are in the creepy forest "Lions and tigers and bears, Lions and tigers and bears..." Luckily all I saw was a belligerent squirrel. Eventually you come to a clearing and a junction with a forest road heading East and downhill - keep going straight on on a clear track. Eventually you come to the end of the forest and are faced with the steep climb up Lochurd Hill. Its a bit of a shock after the gently rising path and forest track, and its also very claggy and slippery.
Once up however its a fairly easy walk following a fence line over tussocky grass - its still steep in places on the run up to Wether Law. (560 mtrs)
A track skirts round the top and takes you onto the top from where its a gentle stroll to the trig point on Pyked Stane Hill at 571 mtrs the highest point in the Broughton Heights. From the top there is a fantastic 360 degree view.
The wind had really got up and I layered up to eat my scotch egg and drink my coffee at the trig point.
I went back the same way as I had achieved my objective for the day - I guess you could extend the walk easily by heading over to Green Law. On the way back I decided not to do the steep descent but when I got to the top of the forest I took a fire break down - marked on the OS map - that descends more gently and bears off to the right to come out at the forest track used on the way up at the bottom of the ascent up Lochurd Hill. From there it was a gentle walk back down, with some great views up towards the Pentland Hills
Once back at the car I had a scout around Kirkurd Churchyard - some really ancient grave stones. What a peaceful spot!
All in all a great walk - not too long or too strenuous apart from a couple of steep pulls. Very peaceful - I didnt see another person the whole time.
Share your personal walking route experiences in Scotland, and comment on other peoples' reports.
Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.