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Woodhead Hill - Uncertainty At It's Finest

Woodhead Hill - Uncertainty At It's Finest


Postby iangpark » Tue May 10, 2016 3:51 pm

Sub 2000' hills included on this walk: Woodhead Hill

Date walked: 09/05/2016

Time taken: 5 hours

Ascent: 258m

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Headed off from Kingholm Quay, where our (my flatmate and I) student halls are situated and passed over the 'metal bridge' - last bridge on the Nith. We followed the river path down the other side and partially up, behind a row of houses (see Criffel report), until we were walking behind them over a very faint, overgrown path. The OS map says that you can follow it all the way to Islesteps, but this is very unlikely. We patched that and climbed over a barbed fence into a farmers field (apologies!) and made our way onto the A710 - a fun detour :lol:

We followed the roadside verge, through Islesteps and up to the Mabie Forest entrance just before 'Gillfoot'. Wandered up the road and passed the car parking beside the playpark. After a quick toilet break and filling up of water, we decided to first visit the large Sequoia tree (this was arguably the first of my mistakes) before deciding that we might as well go for climbing Marthrown Hill first. We instantly became enjoyably lost on the trail, passing somewhere SE of Marthrown of Mabie and eventually reaching a crossroads and turning left into Marthrown of Mabie house. We followed the path up to the spectacular yurts and tipis, with not a person in sight - quite surreal :shock:

This was relieving as I was quite sure we were lost at this point and my map wasn't helping. We curved round the left hand side of the area, and made our own path to the west before finding and joining one. Why we decided on this I don't know as it took us far too northerly to ascend Marthrown Hill. We noticed this and headed slightly back before thinking 'let's just keep going up' and we'll get there. Unknowingly, we found ourselves north of Marthrown Hill and east of Woodhead Hill. We fought through extremely dense conifers and deciduous trees before eventually making a slightly steeper ascent slightly north of Woodhead Hill. When we made it to the woody top, we were unsure of what we'd found but a new-ish cairn of at least 6ft was present - this stumped us as we knew this wasn't the highest we could go. Both north and south of the cairn there was a good 3-4m of height that could have been ascended. Apologies for the lack of pictures, as I believe that this would have been the first ever picture of it. My presumption is that we never reached the absolute top but rather began our descent slightly too westerly, where we found the bike trails from other reports :crazy:

Our descent was rather easy and followed through the bike trails that eventually led onto a path. Finally we went the right direction (south) for once and followed the path down below Marthrown Hill. We made a quick decision to try and attempt it but decided we would only get lost again and were getting a bit angry at the lack of signposting throughout the centre of the forest. We slowly made our way down the 7stanes bike trails and back to the car park where we got a lift back :?

A very enjoyable day out with unbeatable weather, but we left feeling slightly perplexed. I'm counting it as a successful summit! :clap:


our_route.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts



EDIT: I have since been back up to the official top as a detour while doing a clockwise circuit of Mabie with friends. The summit is indeed unidentifiable (although I'm sure the cairn is hidden beneath the depths of the tree stumps somewhere...

The view from as near the top as we could get (Lake District [Skiddaw?], Solway Firth and Criffel)
dsc_8276.jpg
Last edited by iangpark on Sun Mar 26, 2017 11:06 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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iangpark
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Re: Woodhead Hill - Uncertainty At It's Finest

Postby Sgurr » Tue May 10, 2016 5:24 pm

Even given that GPs's don't work very well in trees, we approached this from an area where we could get a good reading and fairly sure that this is what the summit used to look like, but I think the surrounding trees are now fallen down/felled see Hill Bagging http://www.hill-bagging.co.uk/mountaindetails.php?qu=S&rf=1796... Excellent TR title :clap:

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Re: Woodhead Hill - Uncertainty At It's Finest

Postby iangpark » Wed May 18, 2016 1:57 am

Think a GPS investment will be a necessary investment for me in the future, particularly if I'm continuing with some more marilyns! The "summit" was neither dense forest nor sparsely populated - reminded me of the Caledonian Forest to be honest. Think we would have been much more straightforward had we ascended from Lochanhead. Thanks for the info!
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iangpark
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 296
Munros:45   Corbetts:15
Grahams:24   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:77   Hewitts:13
Wainwrights:16   Islands:9
Joined: Dec 29, 2015

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