walkhighlands

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.

Two Langholm Marilyn's and a Parking Problem Solved.

Two Langholm Marilyn's and a Parking Problem Solved.


Postby McMole » Wed Oct 09, 2019 10:28 pm

Sub 2000' hills included on this walk: Calkin Rig, Grange Fell

Date walked: 28/09/2019

Time taken: 3.6 hours

Distance: 11.8 km

Ascent: 556m

2 people think this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

Calkin Rig - 2.4hr, 8.6km, 376m
Calkin Rig route s.gif
The forecast was good and it was a Saturday so I didn't meet the usual early morning delays as I circled the Edinburgh bypass to the A7 on my way to Langholm and my first objective. I parked where others had and followed much the same route noting as I did that my first steps took me over a cattle grid and past some pens using telephone pole sized supports.
P1030760 s.JPG
My car parked on the B709
So I shouldn't have been surprised to see a sizeable black quadruped staring curiously at me from the top of the slope as I walked below the buildings at Old Hopsrig. There followed another cattle grid and a gate covered in warnings that Fife Flyer had photographed 18 months earlier for his report and were unchanged.
P1030769 s.JPG
Warning notices that were unchanged from April 2018.
P1030769b s.JPG
No shooting was heard or any other evidence of vermin control seen
I was then back among sheep and later a sizeable flock of pheasants at Calkin as I gazed down at the cottage.
P1030761 s.JPG
Calkin cottage with Calkin Rig's summit and surrounding forest hidden behind the ridge
P1030762b s.JPG
The few remaining pheasants after the rest had flown.
Most had flown by the time I got my camera in action. Following the upper track to near the forest gate I had thought of following the ATV tracks that looked obvious on Google Map's satellite view.
P1030768 s.JPG
The head of the ramp from the track but no ATV track in sight.
When I climbed the ramp up onto the hillside and ducked under the barbed wire strung across the gap in the fence, there wasn't one to be found. Perhaps like crop markings they need the right weather conditions to be visible. The ground wasn't covered in tussocks and was quite easy going, so I didn't waste time searching, but headed upwards and moved across to follow the fence. This did eventually lead me to an ATV track that I followed for most of the remaining 300m to the summit ridge and the gate in the fence. From there it was only a few minutes to the three or four sticks poked into the ground marking the top.
P1030766 s.JPG
The view from the summit
Since it is almost entirely surrounded by forest it isn't a good viewpoint. It's not the worst - but I was meeting that later! On the return trip I tried to follow the ATV track all the way down, but it faded away and I just headed back for the ramp down to the track. Then it was a gentle stroll back to the car with no pheasants or cattle waiting to be photographed and objective number two, Grange Fell, waiting 24 minutes away according to my SatNay.
.
Grange Fell - 1.2hr, 3.2km, 180m
Grange Fell route.gif
I had one worry about this hill - where to park. Fife Flyer hadn't found a good parking spot and my Streetview journeys up and down the road hadn't seen one either. I had read of one, but though recommended and used by several walkers it didn't look probable. The reports mentioned that it was possible to 'park below the trees' a few metres along the minor road that leaves the B7068 150m south of the field gate that is the usual starting point for Grange Fell. Fingers crossed I drove there.
P1030790 s.JPG
A welcome Road Closed sign
When I arrived I found a ROAD CLOSED sign at the junction. Problem solved. All I had to do was park on the road behind the sign. Then I found that if I'd wanted I really could 'park below the trees'.
P1030775 s.JPG
Drive between the two trees to park well off the road
Most of the area under the trees at the junction between the two roads is hard standing. There is enough room for several vehicles to park, though the entry between the two trees is only wide enough for one at a time to get in or out. This is one of the quickest Marilyns I've climbed for some time, but not as straightforward as expected. One wee difficulty was about half way along the track that zig-zags up the hillside.
P1030788 s.JPG
Bridge over the Kirk Burn and the start of the track up Grange Hill running to the right
I started through the field gate and down to the bridge across the Kirk Burn to continue along the track as it climbed up the hillside. As I approached the first hair-pin I realised that I wasn't alone on the track.
P1030776 s.JPG
Meeting the residents at their cafe
I was being observed, and as I slowed to a stop, the crowd on the track started to move up it. Not wanting to herd a herd all the way to the top I slowly moved a short distance to where an easy clamber up the bank took me past the corner and above the entire herd. Another problem solved, though perhaps leaving one for the return journey. The next possible difficulty was finding the trig point when most maps showed it surrounded by forest.
Grange Rig aerial route2 s.gif
My route through the maze
P1030779 s.JPG
Heading into the forest
A little forward planning had provided me with the satellite view from Google Maps which led me through the maze without any difficulty. I did have to divert around a toppled tree, but only one this time.
P1030781 s.JPG
The trig point at the centre of the maze
At the centre of the maze the trig point had a 360 degree view of - trees, trees, trees. For variety I navigated out along a different route - no fallen trees this time.
P1030782 s.JPG
The main ride through the forest.
P1030783 s.JPG
Heading for the edge of the forest
P1030784 s.JPG
Looking back at my exit from the maze - slightly left of centre
For my descent instead of using the track I avoided any possible bovine issues by heading down Ennie Gill.
P1030787 s.JPG
Starting down beside Ennie Gill
The ground bore plenty of evidence of trampling hooves, but the field was uninhabited and would provide a reasonable uphill route if the usual one was heavily occupied.
P1030794 s.JPG
The tree shrouded Ennie Gill. I ascended the track to the right and descended to the left of the trees.

For variety I returned to Edinhurgh via the A74, Carstairs and Forth. That took almost exactly the same time as my morning journey despite being three miles longer. Another fine warm day when once again I met precisely zero other walkers, and this time not even a single local - apart from the animals. There had been no need for the jacket I'd lugged around in my rucksack and apart from some 'soft' going under the trees I hardly got any mud on my trousers and finished with dry socks..
Last edited by McMole on Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:05 am, edited 1 time in total.
McMole
Walker
 
Posts: 180
Munros:141   Corbetts:50
Grahams:40   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:143   Hewitts:25
Wainwrights:4   
Joined: Mar 25, 2016

Re: Two Langholm Marilyn's and a Parking Problem Solved.

Postby Fife Flyer » Thu Oct 10, 2019 10:17 am

Great report and thanks for the mention, we seem to be gathering up the Borders Marilyn's between us. I have been using quite a few of your reports for the ones further south. Parking is always a challenge and it is just as well the Borders hills aren't popular yet.
Only 15 hills left to visit down south now, drawback is they are all round Dumfries which is the best part of a 2 hour drive, I plan to pick them off on my return trips down to Englandshire.
User avatar
Fife Flyer
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 2379
Munros:195   Corbetts:41
Grahams:16   Donalds:20
Sub 2000:120   Hewitts:2
Islands:5
Joined: May 15, 2013
Location: Guess?

Re: Two Langholm Marilyn's and a Parking Problem Solved.

Postby McMole » Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:11 pm

Fife Flyer wrote:Great report and thanks for the mention, we seem to be gathering up the Borders Marilyn's between us. I have been using quite a few of your reports for the ones further south. Parking is always a challenge and it is just as well the Borders hills aren't popular yet.
Only 15 hills left to visit down south now, drawback is they are all round Dumfries which is the best part of a 2 hour drive, I plan to pick them off on my return trips down to Englandshire.

Yes we do seem to be chasing the same objective and I've been treating your reports - and Inca's - as essential reading when planning my trips. I've nine left to visit down in Galloway (plus a couple of Donald tops) which means I'm likely to be supporting the local economy more with B&B stays, provided the Met Office co-operate by predicting some nice long spells of good weather. . :wink:
McMole
Walker
 
Posts: 180
Munros:141   Corbetts:50
Grahams:40   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:143   Hewitts:25
Wainwrights:4   
Joined: Mar 25, 2016

Re: Two Langholm Marilyn's and a Parking Problem Solved.

Postby PeteR » Sat Oct 12, 2019 9:27 am

Two enjoyable hills. I approached Grange Fell from a back entrance to Grange Farm, just past the main quarry entrance. Resolved the parking issue, as plenty of space. But oh the brambles, nettles and self down Christmas trees on the walk. First hill I'd done in shorts and ripped my shins to pieces 😂
User avatar
PeteR
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 2048
Munros:282   Corbetts:158
Grahams:89   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:176   Hewitts:3
Islands:9
Joined: Jan 27, 2010
Location: North Ayrshire

2 people think this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).



Walkhighlands community forum is advert free

We need help to keep the site online.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by setting up a monthly donation by direct debit?



Return to Walk reports - Scotland

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 22 guests