Delighted to get a Perthshire hill in this horrible week!

Sub 2000s: Torlum

Date walked: 19/02/2020

Distance: 5km

To be fair it wasn't a horrible week but in terms of weather it wasn't quite what we'd bargained for!

Back in a very mild January we booked a cottage in the hope (on my part) of doing some walking and maybe including Beinn a' Chroin (my last remaining Crianlarich Munro). Then Storm Ciara came along with Dennis close behind, and I guessed with all the rain Glen Falloch would be a mud bath and not a smart idea to walk along twice in a simple out and back, which is what I'd planned to do. :thumbdown:

The forecast for the week was so depressing I wondered if we'd get any walking at all. But if you have to be storm-bound anywhere this cottage wouldn't be such a bad place to do it. The Old Stables at Westerton (found on WH) is excellent - underfloor heating, beautifully laid out, Wifi and Netflix, full length bath, separate shower and a comfortable bed. I warned Pete it would probably be small - "think caravan" - but it was nothing like a caravan, with very high ceiling and solid stone walls - and a big plus if you have a dog, an enclosed garden and walks from the door. That's the accommodation commercial sorted. :)

I have to be honest; it did rain a lot. But we used what breaks we got to visit the Cultycraggan WW2 POW Camp at Comrie and walk the Hosh circuit at Crieff when we even had some blue sky and sun. :D


But I was still itching to climb a hill. I'd thought about Auchnafree Hill but was advised there was so much water pouring into Loch Turret the burns would be difficult to cross. Then I came across Torlum and reading Graeme D's report reassured me that if he could do it with his 9 week old daughter I would surely manage it just me and the dog! Even with a bit of snow. Then I had the bright idea of contacting Anthony, who moved to Crieff from the Black Isle 7 years ago. While he lived up north we had climbed a number of hills together (at his wife's suggestion as she didn't like him going out solo) so it was worth running it past him. He got straight back and said he'd come. Torlum was one of his regular walks and he was happy to show me the way. :clap:

I picked him up in Crieff at 9.00 and he directed me to where he parks (for a while forestry work made it difficult to park at the track entrance). We walked a short distance along the road to a gated track opposite a cottage. Once away from the road I let Keira off the lead and she stayed off the whole time with no problem of her trying to go off on the scent of roe deer we saw crossing the track further up. This bodes well for the future as taking a dog with a strong prey drive out on the hills is a challenge you can well do without. Been there done that with our old boy Jack when he was younger! :lol:

The photos are self explanatory of our route.

Not our vehicle

Dog off the lead and in the lead (roe deer ahead)

We took left fork, but tracks come together further up

Corridor through conifers


Colour in the monochrome

Second gate

Turn right at second gate


Up the track we go

We could have stayed on the track for longer but took the first available path up, which would normally be grassy but today was covered with snow.

Turned off track here


The views were hazy but you could just make out the Ochills spread out in a row to the south.

South to faint Ochills

Even Crieff wasn't all that clear.

Zoomed east to Crieff

Summit trig ahead

Anthony on Torlum

Zoomed west to Ben Vorlich and Stuc a' Chroin

We took a different way down, slightly less steep than the ascent had been. In summer this would have meant bashing through bracken but is fine in winter and added a bit of variety to the views. It also meant no landing on our backsides as less steep.

Different way down



Balloch Loch and Pond of Drummond

The two previous days we got some intervals of blue sky and sun but today the cloud was too thick for any of these refinements.

Sun doing its best

Our descent route took us back to the track a bit further on than we'd left it and we passed the start of our ascent path on the way down. From there it was a simple case of retracing our steps to the gate opposite the cottage.

Back on the track

Back to second gate

Back to cottage at start

I then deposited Anthony back to his home in Crieff, had a catch up with his better half, and was back with my own better half by 12.00. A good morning's walk and it hadn't rained a drop, which in last week's weather in Perthshire was something to be applauded! :clap:

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