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Crock & Hare - A couple of Angus finest

Crock & Hare - A couple of Angus finest


Postby PeteR » Sat Feb 23, 2019 3:57 pm

Sub 2000' hills included on this walk: Crock, Hare Cairn

Date walked: 10/02/2019

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Catching up on a couple of recent walk reports, this one being of two Angus sub 2000s. The once challenging Crock and its neighbour Hare Cairn.

I chose to start from Kirkton of Glenisla Community Centre car park at the west end of the settlement. I had hoped to avail myself of their conveniences, but possibly as a result of the time of year the doors were firmly locked. Seems I was going to have to hang on until I found a bush.

ImageP1060736 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
The starting point for the walk

From the car park it was a short walk back down the road, to where the Cateran Trail headed off toward East Mill Farm.

ImageP1060739 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
The short walk back along the road

ImageP1060740 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Turn off to the Farm

Just before the farm the Trail takes a sharp left, heading pleasantly along a good track toward Loch Shandra.

Views to my first target of the day, Crock, were looking pretty good and I ambled along the track. I appreciate that previously this hill had presented a significant challenge to those brave souls attempting to locate its summit. Today, much like the writer, its bonce has lost its covering and is exposed to the elements……

ImageP1060750 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
View to Crock

ImageP1060759 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Loch Shanda, with causeway

Loch Shandra looks a cracking spot, with the track heading across the small dam and over the outlet in to the burn. A quick couple of gates and I was on what I assume is the main forestry track. Headed left toward Tulloch.

ImageP1060763 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
The next bit of the route ahead

ImageP1060770 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Just around the Tulloch point

I’d plotted a route that headed up on to the open hill at just about this point, a little past Tulloch itself. To be honest I reckon you could head off up the hill at any point once clear of the trees that haven’t been chopped down yet. I’m not sure there is anything much to be gained trying to source any tracks that might head up the hill (if they even exist). If you do walk past the house you pass a gate across the track and a little further on and a track does double back off the main track to aid getting on to the hill. It saves absolutely no effort at all though, as almost immediately you need to gird loins and prepare yourself for the slog up through the aftermath of the tree felling anyway. Not sure why I mentioned it really……

ImageP1060772 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
I was headed toward this lone trunk, to see what the view was like ahead from there

ImageP1060775 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Nice views nehind though

ImageP1060779 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
mmm, not the most appetisng terrain

Some people may enjoy slogging up through these brashings. Personally I find it tedious, as well as potentially treacherous. I think I might actually prefer thrashing my way through the trees to be honest, rather than risking ankle breaks and slips picking my way through various branches, stumps and assorted holes that the tree fellers left. The only benefit on this occasion was the opportunity to look back at Loch Shandra opening up as height was gained. The Graham of Mount Blair was also looking good too.

ImageP1060780 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Mount Blair

Eventually I managed to drag myself to the top of the now felled tree line, where brashings and general nasty stuff was replaced by much easier heather. Thankfully the ground underneath was fairly even, so no hidden nasties to trip me up.

ImageP1060786 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Finally entering easier terrain

ImageP1060787 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr

ImageP1060793 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr

ImageP1060797 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Summit cairn

ImageP1060800 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr

ImageP1060801 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr

Not a bad summit, with a good view to my next target, Hare Cairn straight ahead, along with views of the three Grahams behind me of Mount Blair, Mealna Letter and Badandun Hill. The Munros of Mayar and Driesh to the north were also showing nicely too.

The view toward Hare Cairn proved to be very helpful. With all the tree felling that has taken place on that hill I could see several tracks to ease my way up through the post felling carnage. Took a few photos, to aid me once I was there.

ImageP1060805 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Useful info on Hare Cairn

ImageP1060806 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Panoramic view of Hare Cairn

First of all though I had to get myself off Crock.

What you don’t see from the summit is the post tree felling carnage that greets you once over the initial heathery descent. In truth it is only a short section of unpleasantness, before returning to much easier walking through new planting as the gradient eased. But oh, what a fun short section it was, it was, what a fun short section it was.

ImageP1060807 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Let the fun begin

ImageP1060809 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
And then it got worse

ImageP1060811 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Looking back up

ImageP1060813 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Still a bit more fun to go yet

ImageP1060818 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr

I’m sure I could have followed a better line, but once committed I simply decided to crack on with the route choice I’d taken. It basically consisted of a few steps to the left, stop and review the situation, then perhaps a shuffle down to the right, stop and survey the situation again, a bit more of a shimmy down to the right, stop again and check out the lie of the land, down to the left for a while, stop……..till eventually I was through it without any major incident.

The remainder of the descent was easy for the most part, although there were a few patches of where grass and moss camouflaged stumps and branches tried to catch me out.

I was aiming for the edge of the forestry that was almost immediately in line with the hills summit. There’s an obvious clearing through the trees, where the Newton Burn meanders. My planned route would take me through this clearing, across the burn and then up through an obvious firebreak. As the footbridge marked on the OS map has long gone I’d have to ford the Newton Burn once I’d scaled the deer fence that bordered the forestry. The deer fence turned out to be easier than expected, given it had collapsed in one section. The Burn was less straightforward though, as it looked deeper than I’d expected and had a decent flow to it……………I got wet feet.

ImageP1060824 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
En route to Hare Cairn

ImageP1060827 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Fence crossing

ImageP1060828 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Looking back at my river crossing

I was aiming for a clear fire break in the trees that I had spied from Crock (it was at NO234624) which made for a short, easy route through the trees. A slight issue with a barbed wire fence once clear of the trees. Found myself pushing my rucksack and walking pole through the fence and then forcing myself through a gap between two separate sections of fencing wire.

ImageP1060832 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Fire break on to the hill

ImageP1060835 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Looking back at the awkward fence obstacle

Although not marked on the map I had noticed a track a short way to the right (once through the fence) that gave a rising traverse from right to left. Once located this made easy progress to the forestry track that is marked on the OS map (at around NO237625, but might be a bit off with that grid reference). From here I followed that track a short distance before picking up another track with a more direct route up to the top of the tree line (well the former tree line), from where it was an easy stroll over short heather to the summit trig.

ImageP1060839 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
The track of the rising traverse

ImageP1060841 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Back to Crock

ImageP1060857 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
View back from the edge of the felled area

ImageP1060887 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Hare Cairn summit

Very nice views down the Blackwater Reservoir, across to Creigh Hill and back to Crock as well.

ImageP1060892 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr

ImageP1060897 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr

ImageP1060898 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr

ImageP1060899 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr

My route off Hare Cairn was via the fence line toward Creag Reamhar, from where I headed right off the hill toward the Knockshannoch Activity Centre and the short road walk back to the car. Save for a climb over a deer fence and avoiding a boggy section in the roadside field the descent off Creag Reamhar took place with little incident.

ImageP1060900 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr

ImageP1060902 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr

ImageP1060906 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr

ImageP1060911 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Was heading down besides these trees back to the road

ImageP1060912 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Another fence obstacle to negotiate

ImageP1060914 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
I do like a tree

ImageP1060916 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Boggy ground avoided

Back at the road and it was just a short(ish) trot back to Kirkton of Glenisla and my motor.

ImageP1060920 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
I do like a tree #2

ImageP1060926 by Pete Riedel, on Flickr
Glenisla House pub

Crock may have lost some of its mystique for some, what with its covering of conifers having been shorn from its top. What is left with these two hills though is a very pleasant half day walk, offering some good views of the surrounding hills.


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User avatar
PeteR
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 2056
Munros:282   Corbetts:158
Grahams:89   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:176   Hewitts:3
Islands:9
Joined: Jan 27, 2010
Location: North Ayrshire

Re: Crock & Hare - A couple of Angus finest

Postby Sgurr » Sun Feb 24, 2019 4:45 pm

Beginning to feel nostalgic about crawling up the Crock drainage ditch instead of furious with newbies who DIDN'T HAVE TO DO IT. Not posting yet another pic.
User avatar
Sgurr
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 4402
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:219   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:569   Hewitts:139
Wainwrights:160   Islands:58
Joined: Nov 15, 2010
Location: Fife

Re: Crock & Hare - A couple of Angus finest

Postby RocksRock » Sun Feb 24, 2019 6:50 pm

:lol: :lol: :D :lol: :lol:
RocksRock
 
Posts: 231
Munros:4   Corbetts:7
Grahams:9   
Sub 2000:19   Hewitts:4
Wainwrights:26   Islands:8
Joined: Sep 6, 2012

Re: Crock & Hare - A couple of Angus finest

Postby PeteR » Mon Feb 25, 2019 2:28 pm

Sgurr wrote:Beginning to feel nostalgic about crawling up the Crock drainage ditch instead of furious with newbies who DIDN'T HAVE TO DO IT. Not posting yet another pic.


:lol: :lol: :lol: you should definitely consider a rematch and enjoy the views this time. In my defence I've enjoyed a few jollies up through forestry elsewhere, so feel I've "done my time" :D
User avatar
PeteR
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 2056
Munros:282   Corbetts:158
Grahams:89   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:176   Hewitts:3
Islands:9
Joined: Jan 27, 2010
Location: North Ayrshire

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