This walk was undertaken in less than favourable conditions, with strong winds and a few squawley showers passing through, especially when I was walking on the ridge.
Given the weather I wasn't looking at heading too far, so a trip back down in to Galloway was called for, to pick off another of those tough old sub 2000s they have to offer, Craignell.
P1060030 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Parked up at NX544752 by the Clatteringshaws Loch dam, on the minor road to Craigencallie. Wind was already up and the "bag-for-life" my walking boots had been in was soon wisked off into the local trees as I was "mid lace" with one of my boots
P1060032 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Initial walk along the minor road, with my target ahead of me
P1060034 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Headed off on to the substantial track at NX535753, where there is in fact a substantial area where you could park and reduce the walking by a few minutes., if you wanted
P1060038 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
The area is a miriad of tracks, so you need to be sure of which one you should be taking. Mine was headed to the quarry, where I would hang a sharp left and continue on my way
P1060044 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
A panoramic short, just because I could
P1060051 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Carried a long the track, with my target still in view.........experienced the odd spot of rain here and there by this time
P1060052 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
The OS map suggested that at NX526753 I should leave the track I was on and head up a further track, that would take me to the base of the hill........this was it. I was expecting it to be boggy, once I'd clapped eyes on it, but it actually wasn't too bad
P1060055 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
There was even a bit of sunshine too
P1060059 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Eventually the comfort of the track has to come to an end and it was on to the open hill. Oh the joy
P1060061 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Then again, the views behid me weren't bad......looking back over Clatteringshaws Loch to Cairnsmore the Black Craig of Dee
P1060070 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Once over the initial slog of a steep climb the gradient does ease, even if the underfoot conditions remained a bit tough
P1060073 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Still all happening behind me
P1060078 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Hit the top of Low Craignell, where I was suddenly out of the shelter from the wind.........nearly knocked my block off
P1060079 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
A superb view of the route ahead to Criagnell's summit. After some initial heather bashing I actualy located a fairly well established path, which but for a couple of occassions where I lost it took me all the way to the summit
P1060086 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Was getting a bit of a pasting from both the wind and rain by this time, but it really was an enjoyable stravaig all the same
P1060090 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
P1060092 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Looking back the way I had come
P1060105 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
By the time I was almost at the summit the weather really was closing in.........photo quality took a dip, as it was quite hard to stay standing and frame my shot
P1060114 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
I wasn't joking
This walk had actually been a bit of a late start, so I was well aware I'd be heading down as the sun was set and darkness was taking over. I was heading down toward a firebreak in the trees at NX506745, although with the felling of the trees it may have disappeared..............
P1060124 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
........so I ended up in the trees instead
P1060128 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Eventually back on the track and heading back to the car. It was dark by now and the rain was definitely setting in.
It all went a bit pear shaped at NX532750, where there is a junction of a number of track........took the wrong one (couldn't actually find the one I was expecting to be on), which brought me out eventually to NX535753 and the substantial parking area. a quick walk along the road back to the car, where I could capture a nice moon shot (I do like a nice moon shot)
P1060134 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
While it may have been a late start and the weather might not have been the best, this was still a great circuit that helped fill a few hours
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.