Author Topic: Trying to Plan a Merrick / White Laggen Overnight Trip - Advice please.  (Read 374 times)

johnmstoryteller

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Hello,


I've got a group of friends going to White Laggen Bothy in Galloway Forest Park next weekend.  My mate and I were thinking about going out a day early and having a bit of a camp out before heading over to the bothy.  He said he quite fancied going up to Merrick, which I think is a good shout, but I'm just trying to work out the logistics of the whole ordeal.  The earliest we can leave is the 15:25 bus to Newton Stuart, with another bus putting us in Glentrool around 17:46.  I reckon it would be pretty optimistic to try and get up Merrick and back down that night.  We would camp out with hammocks and tarps.


Newbies can't post links on this forum, but the map I'm looking at is the first link if you search "Galloway Forest Map".  I also looked at some other circuits folk have done.  What I can't really tell is how best would we get from Merrick to White Laggen, which is south of Loch Dee.  I can't tell if there is any kind of trail or path that you can follow from point A to B there.  Also, as we are using hammocks to camp, we'll need to find a spot with some trees.


I've no ambition of getting on top of Merrick on Friday and making it to the Bothy same day, I think it's too far.  Would it make more sense to head up towards Merrick and find a spot, then do that hike in the morning, settling in round the Bothy sometime Saturday?  From what I hear Merrick is quite boggy, as is the trail to the bothy from the fire road.  At any rate, we'll head back to Glentrool and catch the busses back to Dumfries on Sunday.  Any experienced traveller in this region, I'd love to get some advice.  Just looking to have a good time and not find myself gone pear shaped halfway through the trip.  Been there before, I'd rather plan properly.

barewirewalker

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Welcome to the Forum.

Mrs BWW and I climbed the Merrick a few years ago. Being on this forum was a godsend because I would not have known about the Grey Man.This is a must because it adds an unusual and memorable twist to the walk.

We took the car to the Lock Trool car park by Bruce's stone, the circular was a pretty full day because of the ground we had to cover from the Grey Man back. The GM is about 0.8 miles SE of the Trig point on Merrick, we found it by holding the crown of the Redstone Rig, then curving into the more broken ground before the ground starts to turn convex prior to bottoming out. You need to catch the first view side onto the crag to get the best impact from the experience.

I would time this into whatever route you plan, if you are committed to some other peak bagging , tou will miss a real gem.
BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.

vghikers

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Welcome  :)
Quote
What I can't really tell is how best would we get from Merrick to White Laggen, which is south of Loch Dee.  I can't tell if there is any kind of trail or path that you can follow from point A to B there.

Merrick and White Laggan are an awful long way apart for very short timescales in this terrain. I'm not sure how difficult it would be to descend SE from Merrick along Rig of the Gloon and onwards to Murder Hole by Loch Neldricken: if feasible you could then pick up the path by Loch Valley down the Gairland Burn to Bruce's Stone and follow the Southern Upland Way eastwards.
A more direct route from Loch Valley via Rig of the Jarkness and the Glenhead Lochs would be utterly trackless and pretty rough at times. We've walked that line as far as the lochs, splendidly wild but often slow going.


johnmstoryteller

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Merrick and White Laggan are an awful long way apart for very short timescales in this terrain.



I don't think we're going to hit Merrick and White Laggen on Friday night.  More of a camp near Glen Trool on Friday then hike up Merrick Sat. morning and over to White Laggan.  We were looking at the map earlier, and I have to agree a more direct route looks pretty hard going.  I think another path I read about mentioned Murder Hole.  I think the Rig of the Jarkness is a real toss up, not sure even if we have the whole day.

sparnel

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There is a bothy en route to the Merrick from Bruce's Stone. It is called Culsharg...........look for it on your map. Sits adjacent to the Merrick path..............Have a good w'end!

barewirewalker

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After leaving the GM, we crossed the low ground, going south, expecting to pick up a path leading towards the forestry. This did not look too promising so we took to the higher ground and followed the Rig of Loch Enoch. There was a trod here, and I am reasonably sure that there were some boot prints.We stayed on the ridge past the murder hole as this looked iffy,to Craignine, exactly where we joined the path besides Gairland Burn, I cannot be too sure, until I check my track log if I recorded one. I will have the times off the photos I took so I could look these out, might take a few days to make the time.

If you came off Buchan Hill to Approach Culsharg, you would be walking off it about the latitude as we came down the other side. BTW I had passed my three score and ten, when we did this walk.
BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.

richardh1905

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Aside from the travel logistics - take a mosquito net if you are planning to sleep out in a hammock.

Better still, a tent with decent mosquito netting.

barewirewalker

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map_greyman by Barewirewalker, on Flickr
Our times based on the times recorded by camera;
Summit; 16:01
Grey Man; 16:42
Bridge of Buchan; 18:53.
Distance; 4.41 miles.
Hope this is a help. Conditions were very good for us. A forecast of a good day during a week of very iffy days for anything at this height proved bang on. Clag came in the next day and were doing a coastal walk.

BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.