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An Ettrick Hills ridge walk
by iainR » Mon Apr 30, 2018 9:41 pm
Grahams included on this walk: Andrewhinney Hill
Donalds included on this walk: Andrewhinney Hill, Bell Craig, Bodesbeck Law, Herman Law
Date walked: 30/04/2018
Time taken: 5.25 hours
Distance: 17.3 km
Ascent: 871m2 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).
The only downside i could see to my plan was the fact that there wasn't any practical way off the end of the ridge which did'nt involve a long walk back over a narrow and sometimes busy road therefore i'd have to retrace my steps, a workout indeed but the weather looked great and a Graham and some Donalds were on offer so bring it on !
I parked in a small lay-by near Birkhill Farm and started up the hillside from behind a mobile phone mast located in the trees next to the farm. Following the fence line up Herman Law was brutally steep and gradually improved to very steep but having the fence nearby was a great walking aid more often than not !
The advantage as always with steep hillsides is that height is gained relatively quickly and i was soon at the fence junction on the summit of Herman Law. A couple of photos later i was off along the ridge following a fence with faint tracks on either side of it. I spotted a couple of large cairns in the distance which turned out to be marker cairns for 2 of the non classified tops, Trowgrain Middle and Mid Rig.
With the intially overcast skies rapidly clearing i gained the highest point on the ridge, the summit of Andrewhinney Hill
and the views of White Coomb and the Grey Mair's Tail to the west.
It was on the path down from the 3rd Donald of the day, Bell Craig, that the views of the Saddle Yokes really opened up and brought a smile to my face as those hills were the subject of my first WH post back in 2015.
By now the sun was really beating down but the cold wind blowing over the ridge kept the jacket on and eventually after a long pull up steeper slopes and exactly 2 hours 45 minutes since i left the car i found myself on the summit of the final Donald of the day, Bodesbeck Law.
With the camera work finished and some food in my belly i could concentrate on the task at hand, getting back over that ridge !
I reached Herman Law quicker than i thought i would but the old knees took a battering going down the steep slopes back to the phone mast.
Despite retracing my steps it was still a very worthwhile and straightforward ridge walk in the Borders hill country.
- Back to the start
by iangpark » Mon Apr 30, 2018 10:10 pm
by Fife Flyer » Tue May 01, 2018 9:35 pm
When I was in the Ettricks I picked off the southern 6 in a oner, which was a tough day, then another trip the 3 to the north.
The beauty of tackling the Donalds is seeing how everyone opts for different routes and linking hills together, I tried to minimise the travelling by linking as many hills in each visit - always looks easy on a map, but in reality I failed a few times.
by iainR » Tue May 01, 2018 10:26 pm
by rockhopper » Tue May 01, 2018 11:26 pm
Think I took the easy option though left the car at Birkhill and cycled down to Selcoth farm and fishery where I hid the bike in undergrowth - cheers
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