walkhighlands

Bowie & the Sponge

Sub 2000s: Ben Bowie, The Fruin

Date walked: 14/05/2022

Time taken: 4.5 hours

Distance: 14km

Ascent: 550m

Another weekend adventure, unfortunately George was unavailable so I suggested to Parminder we take a break from the Donald's and tackle a couple of wee hills in the wild west.
We did our usual research and noticed there are plenty of reports for Ben Bowie and a few for the Fruin. I worked out what I thought would be the easiest routes for both hills, with the least amount of ascent as that is what I am struggling with.
I did notice that Jaxter has at least 5 reports for Bowie and only one for Fruin and we can understand why. Fruin is definitely not a hill I will be returning to, if it isn't the worst hill I have walked up it is not far off. Not only is the summit area like a sponge with soft mushy ground the approach is far, far worse.
Parminder volunteered to drive and we left Fife before 8.30 and we opted to tackle Bowie first and parking is fairly limited and isn't helped by the majority of cars belonging to dog walkers - not that I object to dog walkers.


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Ben Bowie route

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The way to Ben Bowie

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Excellent track with a nice gentle incline, perfect for me

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Looking back

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Dogwalkers ahead and certainly well used by them

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Still ascending

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Looking back

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Slightly higher view of Loch Lomond

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Primroses - I believe

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Not long before we leave the luxury of the track

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Parminder leading the way towards the forest

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Looking back

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A very hazy Loch Lomond now

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Faint path leading us towards the forest

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Parminder will soon catch me up

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Path uphill through the forest

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The track & the loch

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Parminder marching through the forest

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Looking back

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First of a few obstacles

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Quite a few trees down

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Over and under

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Our exit spot from the forest

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Looking north towards Glen Fruin where we be heading next

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Waiting for me before the final push

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Lovely daffodils on the summit area

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A hazy Helensburgh

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The Clyde and Gare Loch meeting

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More daffs

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Not the biggest cairn

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Parminder spotted these red conifer buds

Really enjoyed Ben Bowie it is a cracking wee hill that offers great views (on a decent day), unfortunately it was just too hazy for any decent photo's.
After Bowie we kept our boots on for the short car journey along the Glen Fruin road. I was surprised to see a small parking area, that was a bonus because the road down Glen Fruin is single track.


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The Fruin

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Parking area for our next challenge - The Fruin

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Overgrown cattle grid

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We won't be going that far

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Good path uphill

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Looking back down towards the vehicles

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After the small gate we turn right

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The way ahead for us, the plan was to loosely follow the wall uphill picking our way through the awful terrain

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Interesting modification in the wall to allow the burn to flow freely

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Dead bracken isn't a problem, cattle have also been on the ground making it very uneven

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Looking back, the lump in the distance is Ben Bowie

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Not getting any better

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Progress is slow but we are getting there

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A bit of flora

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More flora

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The grass looks dry, it wasn't lower down

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Looking back

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The slight lump in the distance is The Fruin, the real "boggy" fun is about to begin

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Following the fence, trying to find the best ground

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Getting closer and the bog is going to get really bad - welly's recommended

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Looking back

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Parminder's cool pose

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Gare Loch, NW

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Looking across to Ben Lomond and the big boys

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Summit area of the Fruin, and even the whole area is spongy and soggy

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The Fruin cairn, not really worth all the effort and sogginess

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More flora

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And more

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Camera photo - possibly Helensburgh

This was another enjoyable day, well Ben Bowie was and we plan to get back on our Donald mission next week with Cairnsmore of Carsphairn on the menu and if we feel OK maybe carry on and tackle Moorbrock Hill.

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Cairnsmore of Fleet again

This post is not published on the Walkhighlands forum
Grahams: Cairnsmore of Fleet
Donalds: Cairnsmore of Fleet
Date walked: 08/05/2022
Distance: 12.3km
Ascent: 691m
Views: 7


Chapelgill, take 2

This post is not published on the Walkhighlands forum
Donalds: Chapelgill Hill
Date walked: 01/05/2022
Distance: 3.6km
Ascent: 430m
Views: 19


Spectacular Devils Beef Tub

This post is not published on the Walkhighlands forum
Attachment(s) Donalds: Whitehope Heights
Date walked: 09/04/2022
Distance: 9.4km
Ascent: 600m
Views: 25


The worst hill, second time

This post is not published on the Walkhighlands forum
Attachment(s) Grahams: Cauldcleuch Head
Donalds: Cauldcleuch Head
Date walked: 02/04/2022
Distance: 8.5km
Ascent: 440m
Views: 21


Cracking day - so different from 2 weeks ago

This post is not published on the Walkhighlands forum
Corbetts: White Coomb
Donalds: Lochcraig Head , White Coomb
Date walked: 25/03/2022
Distance: 11.4km
Ascent: 725m
Views: 27


Broad Law and TCH again

This post is not published on the Walkhighlands forum
Attachment(s) Corbetts: Broad Law
Donalds: Broad Law, Talla Cleuch Head
Date walked: 20/03/2022
Distance: 10km
Ascent: 470m
Views: 35


Gairich take 2

This post is not published on the Walkhighlands forum
Munros: Gairich
Date walked: 06/03/2022
Distance: 15.5km
Ascent: 850m
Views: 53


Talla Reservoir again

Attachment(s) Donalds: Cape Law, Erie Hill , Garelet Dod, Molls Cleuch Dod
Date walked: 25/02/2022
Distance: 17km
Ascent: 981m
Comments: 1
Views: 463


Drumelzier again

This post is not published on the Walkhighlands forum
Attachment(s) Donalds: Drumelzier Law, Middle Hill, Pykestone Hill
Date walked: 11/02/2022
Distance: 15.9km
Ascent: 845m
Views: 53

Fife Flyer


User avatar
Location: Guess?
Occupation: Retired
Interests: Driving, cycling & music
Activity: Munro compleatist
Pub: None in particular
Mountain: The last one
Place: Knoydart
Gear: Walking poles
Member: Scottish National Trust
Camera: Sony
Ideal day out: Anywhere as long as the weather is half decent
Ambition: To stay safe
Munro rounds: 1

Munros: 255
Corbetts: 49
Grahams: 33
Donalds: 83
Hewitts: 2
Sub 2000: 123
Islands: 5



Filter reports


Statistics

2022

Trips: 13
Distance: 173.3 km
Ascent: 9501m
Munros: 1
Corbetts: 3
Grahams: 4
Donalds: 24
Sub2000s: 2

2021

Trips: 54
Distance: 1111.54 km
Ascent: 62775m
Munros: 62
Corbetts: 5
Grahams: 5
Donalds: 22
Sub2000s: 2

2020

Trips: 39
Distance: 684.95 km
Ascent: 39742m
Munros: 28
Corbetts: 2
Grahams: 13
Donalds: 44
Sub2000s: 19

2019

Trips: 40
Distance: 587.45 km
Ascent: 38667m
Munros: 43
Sub2000s: 39

2018

Trips: 43
Distance: 722.9 km
Ascent: 45363m
Munros: 59
Corbetts: 2
Grahams: 1
Sub2000s: 40

2017

Trips: 32
Distance: 491.3 km
Ascent: 29918m
Munros: 35
Corbetts: 4
Grahams: 15
Donalds: 14
Sub2000s: 15

2016

Trips: 55
Distance: 938 km
Ascent: 56940m
Munros: 44
Corbetts: 9
Grahams: 14
Donalds: 57
Sub2000s: 6
Hewitts: 2

2015

Trips: 61
Distance: 1027.1 km
Ascent: 64822m
Munros: 84
Corbetts: 12
Grahams: 2
Donalds: 12
Sub2000s: 4

2014

Trips: 47
Distance: 742.3 km
Ascent: 45170m
Munros: 58
Corbetts: 9
Grahams: 1
Donalds: 7
Sub2000s: 12

2013

Trips: 12
Distance: 206.65 km
Ascent: 12364m
Munros: 21
Corbetts: 4
Grahams: 1
Donalds: 1

2011

Trips: 1
Distance: 14 km
Ascent: 614m
Munros: 1

2007

Trips: 4
Distance: 53.5 km
Ascent: 4251m
Munros: 7

2006

Trips: 4
Distance: 60.5 km
Ascent: 3543m
Munros: 4

2005

Trips: 1
Distance: 7 km
Ascent: 800m
Munros: 1

2004

Trips: 3
Distance: 86 km
Ascent: 5885m
Munros: 3

2003

Trips: 1
Distance: 24.25 km
Ascent: 1436m
Munros: 2

2002

Trips: 3
Distance: 48 km
Ascent: 2261m
Munros: 4

2001

Trips: 7
Distance: 104.5 km
Ascent: 6383m
Munros: 10

2000

Trips: 10
Distance: 133.75 km
Ascent: 9525m
Munros: 17

1999

Trips: 11
Distance: 189 km
Ascent: 11976m
Munros: 27

1998

Trips: 2
Distance: 27 km
Ascent: 1823m
Munros: 5

1997

Trips: 3
Distance: 51 km
Ascent: 2515m
Munros: 7

1996

Trips: 4
Distance: 47 km
Ascent: 3950m
Munros: 4
Corbetts: 1

1995

Trips: 2
Distance: 11 km
Ascent: 1350m
Munros: 2

1994

Trips: 5
Distance: 56 km
Ascent: 4188m
Munros: 6


Joined: May 15, 2013
Last visited: May 16, 2022
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