Being a Fife local, surprisingly I have never made a full ascent of West Lomond, even more surprising considering the countless number of times I have climbed sister hill East Lomond. I had attempted the summit twice before, but both times I was forced to turn back by some rather ominous looking Fog quickly blanketing the dome.
As I parked at Craigmead, the temperature gauge read 18C. A pleasant yet overcast July afternoon, however I opted to keep the windbreaker on, as a constant yet light breeze accompanied my ascent. The path was fairly busy, I passed a dozen or so people coming down the hill, and kept good pace behind 2 groups of 3 who were a little further ahead. The path was very dry and stony underfoot, undulating but not particularly challenging until the last 10 minutes or so. The top part is quite steep, and is grassy underfoot. At the top surprisingly the breeze didn't get that much stronger, and I bumped into one of the groups that I had been following on the way up. From nowhere, a runner suddenly appeared, and then disappeared back down the north side just as quickly!
After spending a good 10 minutes at the top, enjoying the particularly pleasant views of Perthshire to the north and the sister hills of East Lomond and Largo Law to the east, I made my descent down the southside of the hill, which is quite steep in places. (NOTE: one part is particularly badly eroded, having to use my hands to help myself on the way down. Loose rocks underfoot are also a problem, would not recommend for casual walkers or those without a head for heights) Once past the steep part, a fence was climbed into a field populated with sheep, and some cows. I did slow my pace down to avoid startling the sheep and their young, as there was a significant number of lambs, and continued down the grassy track, over another fence, and onto the farm track. Oddly enough, I din't pass one single person on this side of the hill! From the farm track, it's a steady and easy walk back to Craigmead. Definitely shifted a bugbear of mine today having finally climbed the hill right on my doorstep!
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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.