Puck's Glen and the Black Gates

Route: Puck's Glen

Date walked: 31/07/2011

Time taken: 2.5 hours

Distance: 5km

Ascent: 200m

I made the trip to Benmore Gardens via the train and ferry to Dunoon. I was seeking an easy day in the sunshine and that's just what I got.

I was using Ronald Turnbull's route from one of his books. I started from the Benmore Gardens car park, crossing the River Eachaig on a private bridge. This led to a path along the west bank of the river, with splendid views of the hills all around.

River Eachaig.jpg
River Eachaig

Looking back along River Eachaig.jpg
Looking back along the River Eachaig

Looking west from River Eachaig.jpg

Looking east across River Eachaig.jpg

Eventually, I came to a bridge that took me back across the river and towards the A815. I crossed the road to join a path leading up to Puck's Glen.

Bridge across River Eachaig.jpg
Bridge leading back to A815

Peaceful scene.jpg

Following the path a little further, I came to path signposted up Puck's Glen. There was an old sign there as well, I like seeing these old fashioned signs.

To Dunoon.jpg
To Dunoon sign - start of Puck's Glen

I immediately entered a prehistoric world of ferns and a narrow gorge. I followed the path up, across several wooden bridges and past many, many waterfalls. There was also a family taking a dip in a pool a bit higher up.

Bridge at start of Puck's Glen.jpg

First wooden bridge.jpg

Puck's Glen.jpg

Part of the path was closed off, so I took a diversion up to a forest road. This knocked out my sense of where I was as I crossed across a few forest roads on the way up, so I ended up taking a diversion up through more open ground. It was a pleasant, if very hot diversion, with lots of insects and a small flocks of Coal Tits and Chaffinches around. I saw lots of Scotch Argus butterflies as well as Common Darter and Gold-ringed Dragonflies. I really enjoyed the way the forest opened up after the closed in feeling from lower down. It also feels like a more "natural" forest setting and is no doubt much richer in biodiversity than the ravine I've just passed along.



I rejoined the main forest road and eventually came to a point where I should have been if I was able to follow Turnbull's route. There was a sign pointing up to Upper Puck's Glen.

Sign to Upper Puck's Glen.jpg

This was a continuation of the lower path, and led up to the highest point of the walk at about 300m. I stopped here for lunch before making my descent. I'm not normally bothered too much by midges, usually get annoyed with clouds of them floating around my face but nothing more, but while there weren't big clouds like that here, there were still plenty of them around. I felt a little tickle on my elbow, and then realised "ah that's what it's like to be bitten by a midge!".

Upper Puck's Glen.jpg

I managed to finish my sandwiches despite the midges, and then followed the ominous sign leading to the Black Gates of Mordor, made my way back down to the forest road. There are a few places along this road where you can drop back down to Benmore Gardens, but I continued on to the third path, and this again led to a pleasant, more open forest path with lots of wildlife.

Black Gates.jpg
To the Black Gates of Mordor

All in all a good day, but very hot!

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Comments: 4

Conic Hill

Attachment(s) Sub 2000s: Conic Hill
Date walked: 09/04/2011
Distance: 5.5km
Ascent: 350m
Comments: 4
Views: 3722


Mountain: Beinn Dorain
Place: Torridon
Ideal day out: I really enjoy long ridge-walks, the higher the better.

Munros: 8
Corbetts: 3
Grahams: 2
Donalds: 1
Sub 2000: 2

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Trips: 2
Distance: 10.5 km
Ascent: 550m
Sub2000s: 1

Joined: Mar 13, 2010
Last visited: Sep 12, 2013
Total posts: 310 | Search posts