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Author Topic: Walking route from Dundee to Glen Clova?  (Read 34687 times)
Stottie
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« on: April 11, 2012, 07:26:41 pm »

I'll be walking from Edinburgh to Cape Wrath.
My first section is the Fife Coastal Path from North Queensferry to the Tay Road Bridge, and thence to Dundee.
I can devise various routes from Dundee to Glen Clova using paths, tracks and minor roads, but maybe someone out there has a bright (and polite) suggestion.
Happy walking!
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bsmyth
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« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2012, 02:08:27 pm »

Hi Stottie
I live in Fowlis just to the west of Dundee. I walk in the nearby area and Clova often. If you let me know the route you propose I will be happy to offer any suggestions. I presume you plan to walk across the Tay Road Bridge? Are you heading for Glen Doll? If so are you then planning to walk Jock's Road to Braemar? Are you camping, B&B-ing or what? Look fwd to hearing from you.
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Stottie
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« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2012, 12:06:09 pm »

Thanks bsmyth
I do intend to walk from Glen Doll along Jock's Road, and I've considered several options before homing in on that one.  Having said that, nothing's been ruled out, so I'd be delighted to hear further from you.

I accept that I'll have to do some tarmac-bashing, and because I'm not familiar with Strathmore I'm hoping local knowledge will give me the best chance of appreciating the landscape rather than scooting across it into the mountains.

I've never explored the Fife coast, so I'll go from Edinburgh across the Forth Rd Bridge and along the coast to the Tay Rd Bridge and across to Dundee.

Looking at the 1:50,000 map, I can see a fairly obvious route out of Dundee to Bridgefoot, Balluderon Hill, Wester Dunoon and Charleston to Glamis.  Thereafter it looks like a convoluted tramp to avoid the A928 to Kirriemuir, where I'd expect to find B&B.  Beyond Kirriemuir I can see reasonable ways of reaching Glen Clova, including a path across Sneck of Corinch to Cairn Leith and down to the B955 to Clova Hotel where I'd hope to use the bunkhouse. 

I'll be geared up for wild camping, and because of that I won't aim to do too many miles per day.  I like my comforts too, so I'll take those where I find them.

I've toyed with the idea of going via Alyth and Glen Prosen (where there's still a hostel, I believe) and over the Kilbo Path to Glen Doll.  Whichever way I go, there's almost sure to be a wild camp somewhere along the route, though I believe there's a bothy at the north end of Loch Callater.

That's the gist of it at present.  As I said at the start, I'd be delighted to benefit from local knowledge and experience.
Kind regards
Stottie
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bsmyth
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« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2012, 01:09:03 pm »

Here are some suggestions. I am assuming you are heading for the Lairig Ghru after Braemar. I am sure you will enjoy the Fife Coastal Path. It is pretty straightforward with some excellent sections especially when you get to the north east of Fife (East Neuk) where there are very scenic stretches and lovely wee fishing towns/villages. Watch when you leave Leuchars as my friend and I missed the signposting although we got back onto the track relatively easily.

Route 1

After crossing Tay Road Bridge immediately turn to your left and pick up the path between the Hilton Hotel (immediately on the left at the end of the bridge) and the river. There are major road works around here due to a multi million £ redevelopment of the waterfront so you might need to watch for diversions to the path. Follow the path along the riverside (it is a bit of an esplanade), where you get excellent views up the river and across to Fife. Walk past the airport to the bridge over the main railway at 355301. Just after the bridge there is an underpass and path, which takes you to around 356302. Cross the road and pick up a path. Follow it to the left of a big brown modern building (Gore). You will see signposts with a cycleway marked. Turn left and follow this, which is the route of the old Dundee to Newtyle railway although you will not recognise this as such. It goes between the Technology Park on your left and private housing on your right. Follow this to 354316, turn left at the roundabout onto Myrekirk Road and walk towards the roundabout on the dual carriageway (Kingsway). Just before the roundabout cross the road to your right and pick up a path (cycleway) which runs parallel with the Kingsway for a few hundred yards. It then goes through an underpass to the other side of the Kingsway. Follow the signs through an industrial state to Camperdown Park. The main entrance is at 360323. Walk through the park. I think just after you enter the park there is a nature trail path immediately to your left, which takes you around the park and up to Birkhill at 355339 where it comes out at the main road A923. If you don’t find this path follow the main road into the park to the wild life centre where you can get a coffee. Just past there take the park road to the left towards park buildings/houses then it swings kind of to the north across the fairway for the first green of the golf course. Just past there, there are more park buildings on the left. Turn left past the duck pond towards the park exit. Just as you get to the exit you should be able to pick up the nature trail to 355338. At this point cross the road A923 and turn left and walk towards the Birkhill Inn where you will get good food. Turn right at the Inn and follow the narrow road to Blairfield. Turn right at Blairfield and follow the path to where it meets the country road just beyond Templeton Woods. Follow this road to the T junction just beyond Templeton Farm. Cross the road and walk up the side of the nice modern house to the old railway track (Dundee to Newtyle again) behind the house. Turn left and walk a few hundred yards where you should find a signpost taking you up the side of a field to Dronley Woods on your right. On entering the woods follow the track NW as marked on the OS map, which takes you out onto a country road just below Eastfield. Walk up to Kirkton of Auchterhouse. When you get to the centre of the village (where a road goes off to the right) walk straight on up the hill to 345389. On your right you should see access to a track (through a gate if I remember correctly). Follow this track up to the left of Auchterhouse Hill as per the OS map and onto Wester Denoon then down to Glamis. I am afraid I have no alternative suggestion to the main road or your “convoluted route” to Kirriemuir, where you will get B and B etc. There is Band B in Glamis and excellent bar food at the Strathmore Arms in the centre of the village. I am not sure if you can walk up the main drive to the Castle without paying and will be able to get out at the west exit onto the main road. It is worth asking as the Castle is worth seeing. Whilst there you may want to pay the entrance fee as they have an excellent guided tour. There is an exhibition of royal wedding dresses on and something in connection with the Golden Jubilee. It will be busy. There is a good restaurant and coffee etc available at the Castle. Have a look at its website.

There is no path network from Kirriemuir to Dykehead. Another stretch of tarmac bashing I am afraid. At Dykehead (where we had our wedding reception many years ago and the hotel is currently closed) take the road to the left to Prosen where shortly after the turn off you will pick up the track you mention. This is known as the Airlie Ridge. There are a few relevant web sites including: VisitScotland and VisitAngus

Walk along this track and meet the Minister’s Path at about Drumwhern. Turn right down the Ministers Path to the B955. I am sure there is a path across the valley floor with a small footbridge across the river and path up to the B956 just south of Clova Hotel. I am confident this is sign posted. If not follow the B955 to Clova Hotel where there are bunkhouse facilities. I will probably be up there soon. If so I will check it out and let you know.

From there about 3 miles of tarmac bashing again to Glen Doll and onto Jock’s Road. There is a bothy at the far end of Loch Callater but I am not sure how accessible it is. I have walked past it and recollect it belonging to the Mountain Bothies Association (not sure). Perhaps another Rucsacs follower can help. However there is plenty accommodation in Braemar. The walk at the end of Jock’s Road down to Braemar on the main road is a bit of a trudge at the end of a long day.

Route 2

Follow Route 1 up to 352404 just west of Auchterhouse Hill. The path takes a dip and turn at the burn. About here a track goes off to the left through a wood and round a disused quarry. Cross a dyke (near the quarry I think) into what was Forestry Commission type land and after a short distance turn right onto a forest track. I think a lot of this part of the forest has now been harvested. Once on the main track follow it to the right and round the north of Henderston Hill until the forest ends. There is the usual fencing at this point. Turn right and head towards Kinpurney Hill. There is a track either just inside or outside the forest boundary heading towards the east side of Kinpurney. When on Kinpurney you will see a well-walked track down to Newtyle. The last section is about ¼ mile of road walking. As you enter Newtyle you will see a car park and public park to your right. Turn right into the car park and follow the railway network path (sign posted) to the B954. You can turn right and tarmac bash to Meigle or cross over the road and pick up the railway track to the country road SE of East Camno. From there follow the back roads to Meigle. I have enquired if the old railway from Meigle to Alyth is walkable but it is only from Hallyards to the B954.

Alternatively from the centre of Meigle turn left and walk the short distance to the B954 to Alyth. Tarmac bash either the whole way to Alyth or to Balharry and then follow the back roads to the west of Balharry to Alyth. In Alyth pick up the Cateran Trail (http://www.walkthecaterantrail.com/) to Kirkton of Glenisla. From there follow the tracks NE to Glenhead Farm at the top of Backwater Reservoir. From there follow the track NE to Hill of Strome and onto Cormuir in Glen Prosen. You can either turn right and walk to Glen Prosen Village and pick up the Minister’s Path (referred to in Route 1) to Clova or turn left up to the Kilbo Path over to Glen Doll taking in Dreish and/or Mayer en route. If you do walk up Mayer, go down to Glen Doll via Corrie Fee (follow path beside Fee Burn on the OS map to the NE of Mayer). It is an absolutely magical corrie. http://www.nnr-scotland.org.uk/corrie-fee/
Another alternative is after Mayer walk NW to Dun Hillocks and Little Kilrannoch to Tom Buidhe and Craw Craggies where you can pick up Jock's Road.

Stay on the high ground after Mayer otherwise you are in peat bog. Not pleasant I can tell you from experience. You will pick up a land rover track just after Dun Hillocks. There is a track all the way to Craw Craggies from there. Not a route for inclement weather tho’.

There is a lot of description here. If you are interested in any part of these walks let me know and I will email you some maps with the route marked for the trickiest sections. If I upload them to this Forum I fear I will breach copyright.
Hope you find this helpful. Other Forum followers may wish to comment on the above.
Good luck.

Brian
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Stottie
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« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2012, 06:18:25 am »

Brian
Many many thanks for taking the time to help me.  I've read through quickly and will get my maps out and trace the routes in detail.  Your local experience is an enormous help, and I'll be sure to get back to you.
Pete
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Jacquetta
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« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2012, 02:07:44 pm »

Good news about mapping on the Fife Coastal Path: I was sharing a stand with Footprint Maps at the Outdoor Pursuits show at Ingliston this weekend (April 21-2).  I picked up a copy of their new edition Fife Coastal Path map and it's bang up-to-date with the extended route from Wormit Bay to Newburgh.

It's also crystal clear about the route leaving Leuchars and I suspect may be of interest both to Stottie and to Brian Smyth.  Like their other long-distance path maps, it is waterproof and retails for £5.95, and for each copy sold they donate 75p to the FCP management. The scale is 1:50,000 and there's more information on their website.
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Stottie
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« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2012, 07:38:47 pm »

Hi Jacquetta
Thanks for the tip about the Footprint map.  Waterproof and only 40g - sounds good!
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Jacquetta
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« Reply #7 on: April 23, 2012, 07:42:27 pm »

Hi Stottie

Actually it's only 30 grams without the plastic sleeve.  This is coming from one who thinks travelling light involves three socks: two to wear and one to wash. Shocked
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Stottie
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« Reply #8 on: April 23, 2012, 07:55:54 pm »

Brian

I've had a lot of fun looking at your suggested routes, so thanks again for sowing seeds.  Nothing compares with local knowledge, and if you find yourself heading my way I'll be delighted to reciprocate.

I'll make my decision which way to go once I've reached Dundee.  I think your route via Alyth is best for scenery, for general interest and also for the sub-options once I reach the glens and the mountains.

The main merits of the Kirriemuir alternative are that it's shorter, and that it gives me a chance to visit Glamis Castle.  I spent an afternoon at Traquair House last spring when I walked the Southern Upland Way, and I found it very worthwhile.  I also had a couple of hours at Thirlestane Castle, another gem that I would have hurried past in my younger days.

The weather is going to be a factor in my decisions.  I appreciate your advice that the high route north of Mayer isn't one for inclement weather.  I also need to monitor my physical fitness at the time.  If in doubt I'll take another route altogether: better men than me have had to retreat from the mountains without achieving their objective.

Kind regards
Pete
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Stottie
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« Reply #9 on: April 23, 2012, 08:00:17 pm »

Hi Stottie

Actually it's only 30 grams without the plastic sleeve.  This is coming from one who thinks travelling light involves three socks: two to wear and one to wash. Shocked

Ha ha!  I'm with you in spirit, but I do like to change my socks every couple of hours when the weather's hot.  I'm the guy with damp socks hanging from the rucksack (or waist belt if the sun's in my eyes).  Yet another reason why I walk alone Grin

Kind regards
Stottie
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