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Another 4 Donalds a different way

Another 4 Donalds a different way

Postby Fife Flyer » Sun Oct 09, 2016 7:35 pm

Donalds included on this walk: Black Law, Cramalt Craig, Dollar Law, Greenside Law

Date walked: 07/10/2016

Time taken: 5 hours

Distance: 17 km

Ascent: 1050m

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This was a kind of short notice venture back down to the Borders, one has to try and make the most of the 'unseasonal' dry spell and Donalds are an ideal destination :lol: I have to say that this group of Donalds were far more interesting and exciting than the last 2 :(
I did my usual research and although there are only a handful of reports for this group, most of the previous visitors either tackle them from the south or visit them as part of different groups. I for one reason or another had these 4 sitting close(ish) to each other so I thought why not plot out a route and go for it and that is exactly what I did. I knew the problem would be getting from Cramalt Craig to Greenside Law with plenty of going down and then back up.
I knew the walk would take approximately 5 hours (according to Naismith) so I just got up at the usual time and then set off to battle with the usual Edinburgh commuters :roll: If anyone reading this is a regular commuter you really do have my sympathy, I find it so frustrating stopping and then starting :crazy: It took me about 90 minutes to reach the start point and I was on my way just after 9.30am 8)

Image Parking area

Image Not the way I was heading

Image Walk along the road as far as the wall and then head steeply uphill

Image First photo looking back down

Image Looking across the glen

Image The way up, trying to avoid the dying bracken

Image Looking down from slightly higher up

Image Looking down the glen to the north

Image Looking back down having followed the wall uphill

Word of warning as soon as you leave the track the going up starts in earnest, there is a faint path and as you gain height the path merges with an ATV track which makes walking uphill slightly easier. I reached the summit of Dollar Law in an hour after lots of huffing and puffing and stopping to take a few photo's :lol:

Image Dollar Law trig.

Image The way ahead after Dollar Law

Once I reached the summit the wind had picked up a bit and the temperature had dropped quite a bit, and I had to root out my woolly hat and gloves for the first time for a few months :wink: The route to the next port of call Cramalt Craig was a doddle, basically following a fence or a wall, I walked between the two :lol: It took me 45 minutes to reach Cramalt Craig which was intermitently shrouded in cloud, a few photo's and I was off again :roll:

Image Follow the fence/wall

Image First glimpse of Megget Reservoir

Image Following the fence, Cramalt Craig in cloud

Image Looking back towards Dollar Law

Image Looking west and the obligatory wind farm

Image Cramalt Craig summit, 45mins from Dollar

Cramalt Craig is a "demoted" Corbett and would be the high point of the day, so in theory it would be all downhill from here :lol: There are a couple of shoulders heading east, the one directly from Cramalt Craig would involve much more descending and then ascending, so I opted to retrace my steps and head back towards Dun Law, but start descending before reaching the higher ground. As stated previously I knew it was going to be tough going and it certainly was, descending was easy however the ascending was basically a slog :lol: I have to confess I haven't got a photo of Greenside Law summit, not quite sure why :o

Image Megget Reservoir again

Image Some sort of furry caterpillar

After Greenside the trudge across to Black Law wasn't very interesting or exciting, there is a bit of a bogfest to negotiate :(

Image Rather undulating terrain

Image Black Law summit

I noticed from previous reports that Black Law was a major disappointment and I totally agree and there was no reason to linger, so I was off on the final stretch the descent back to the car. The descent was really easy until the bracken is reached on the northern slopes on Sting Burn, luckily the bracken was on it's last legs and getting ready for the winter :lol:

Image Manorhead Farm in the distance and the way down

Image Lots of dying bracken to wade through

Image For the bracken lovers :lol:

A very enjoyable day and I enjoyed these hills so much I would even visit them again and I haven't said that about too many Donald's so far :lol: That is 60 Donald's down, the majority that are left are now down in the deep south west :lol:
Next on the horizon is another visit to tackle the "Ring of Steal" with Tommy, this coming Thursday, forecast looks OK at the moment, bit blowy but dry 8)
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Fife Flyer
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Re: Another 4 Donalds a different way

Postby rockhopper » Mon Oct 10, 2016 12:14 pm

Nice route - so many options to mix 'n match down here - cheers :)
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Posts: 6692
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Re: Another 4 Donalds a different way

Postby SecretSquirrel » Mon Oct 10, 2016 3:13 pm

Agreed that this is a good area to walk. I did almost the same route in July, but clockwise. The weather looks to have held up better for you than it did for me, I got a proper soaking!

Looking back through my pictures I realised I hadn't finished the public report. Now fixed and you really didn't miss anything by not photographing the summit of Greenside Law! :D

Nice spot and photo of the caterpillar.
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Re: Another 4 Donalds a different way

Postby simon-b » Mon Oct 10, 2016 8:47 pm

A nice area for walking, Martin. I enjoyed myself on that range in August.
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Location: Wakefield, West Yorkshire

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