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Four seasons on Larg Hill and Lamachan Hill circuit

Four seasons on Larg Hill and Lamachan Hill circuit

Postby Robertgee » Sat May 05, 2018 12:59 pm

Grahams included on this walk: Lamachan Hill

Donalds included on this walk: Lamachan Hill, Larg Hill

Date walked: 29/04/2018

Time taken: 7 hours

Distance: 17.9 km

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2018-04-29 @ 09-04-36.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts

My walk, to take in Larg Hill (my last Donald in the Galloway Hills), was just over 11 miles long, but the weather was forecast to be pretty reasonable, with just the odd chance of a shower latter in the afternoon. A long two and a half hour drive from home took me to the start of the walk at Caldons in Glen Trool. I'd to follow the forest roads for a while to get to Nick of the Saddle, and from here I could go off road following fire breaks through the trees to get up onto the open hill, and climb to the first high point of Craignaw. On the way, there is some wonderful views over the Cree Valley, and more of the surrounding Galloway Hills. The highest of these, Merrick at 2766 feet (highest hill in the south of Scotland), along with a couple of other hills along the Rhinns of Kells, had a lovely fresh covering of snow on top. You could see it all gradually melting away in the warm morning sunshine.

01-Water of Trool at Caldons.jpg
Water of Trool at Caldons

07-The Merrick with fresh snow.jpg
The Merrick with a covering of fresh snow

33-Craignaw from Nick of the Saddle.jpg
Craignaw from Nick of the Saddle

From Nick of the Saddle I didn't know what I'd be up against when heading along the fire breaks. Very difficult and overgrown? Totally impassable due to fallen trees? But no, the walking was very good and easy, and all the trees to the left had been clear felled, so I could see the route ahead, and knew I'd have no trouble. My route took me to the top of the lesser hill of Craignaw, where there were superb all round views, and my objective, Larg Hill, towering straight ahead.

44-View over Nick of the Saddle to the Cree Valley.jpg
View over Nick of the Saddle to the Cree Valley

46-The Cree Valley from Craignaw west top.jpg
Cree Valley from Craignaw

53-Mulldonoch and the Dungeon Hills.jpg
Mulldonoch and Dungeon Hills

60-Larg Hill and Punch Well Brae from Craignaw.jpg
Larg Hill and Punch Well Brae

From here it was down to Mulmein Moss and up towards Nick of the Brushy, at the coll between Lamachan Hill and Larg Hill. After around three and a half hours from the start, I reached the summit. The views were incredible, the weather was very clear, all the Galloway hills lay before me, with long distance views all the way to the English Lake District, the Isle of Man, Ireland, Mull of Galloway, Mull of Kintyre, Ailsa Craig and Isle of Arran in the Firth of Clyde...superb. :D

79-Lamachan Hill and Curleywee.jpg
Lamachan and Curleywee from final climb up Larg Hill

86-Bennan, Benyellary and the Merrick from Larg Hill.jpg
Bennan, Benyellary and the Merrick from Larg Hill

90-Over Garlick Hill to Wigtown Bay from Larg Hill with Isle of Man on horizon.jpg
Over Garlick Hill to Wigtown Bay

91-Punch Well Brae from Larg Hill with Mull of Galloway on horizon.jpg
Punch Well Brae

102-Craignaw and the Cree Valley from Larg Hill.jpg
View back over Craignaw and the Cree Valley

For a bit of variety I decided to return a different way, so opted to drop back down to Nick of the Brushy. I then climbed the higher hill of Lamachan Hill at 2352 feet. (I’d climbed this before, so not counting to my Donald total this time). Great view right along the Rhinns of Kells from here. The weather had been frosty when I left home at half six that morning. It was warm and sunny all the way to Larg Hill on my walk. Then it had been cool at the higher heights. It really was four seasons in one day, for it had now got cloudy, with some passing showers moving along Glen Trool far below. The very edge of one of these showers got me on Lamachan Hill...falling as snow!!! :shock:

113-Curleywee from Lamachan Hill.jpg
Curleywee from Lamachan Hill

116-Larg Hill from Lamachan Hill.jpg
Larg Hill

121-Rhinns of Kells from Lamachan Hill.jpg
Rhinns of Kells

Now for my return I followed a stone wall which would take me down to the Caldons Burn. I knew this burn could be followed all the way through the forest back to Caldons.

128-Craignaw and the route down to the Caldons Burn.jpg
Craignaw and the route down to the Caldons Burn

The walking alongside the burn was mainly good, but some fallen trees at one point meant I'd to cross to the other side. The burn was wide and deep with slippery stones, so not the easiest of crossings. But I got over okay, but this meant another crossing further down after passing the fallen trees. (You have to be on the west side of the burn at lower levels, where there's a faint narrow path. East side isn't passable). This time my luck was out, and I ended up with a water level higher than my boots...the result? Cold wet feet!!! :(

133-Following the Caldons Burn.jpg
Following the Caldons Burn through the forest

142-Caldons Burn.jpg
Looking back up the Caldons Burn

Beyond that, it was a straight forward walk back to the car at Caldons. There was however one incident along this section...I was chased by geese at Caldons House!!! :lol: They were noisy when I approached, then as I walked past, they went for me...so be warned, don't walk past here with shorts and bare legs! As I walked this on a nice weather Sunday, I’d half expected to see others out on the hills, but saw no one on the entire walk…had the whole place to myself…and it was great. :clap:

153-Geese at Caldons.jpg
Wild geese at Caldons...my attackers!!!
Posts: 36
Munros:102   Corbetts:37
Grahams:32   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:92   Hewitts:34
Wainwrights:33   Islands:60
Joined: Dec 5, 2015

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