Author Topic: TR The Durisdeer Rollercoaster Sat 26 Sep to Sun 27 Sep 20  (Read 1640 times)

April

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Day 1

We drove to Durisdeer on Saturday to do a few hills and an overnighter. It was blustery as we set off and we wondered how windy it would be on the tops. The forecast said quite windy to start but dying down later. 

The view at the gate off the Well Path at Durisdeer


Looking back down at Dursideer


We climbed up the steep route up over Wether Hill and Black Hill. It was sunny so that took the chill off the wind that was intermittent.

Black Hill and Penbane from the ascent from Durisdeer


We could hear gun shot from Glenaggart. I'd read the people who owned the land did have grouse shooting parties up that valley so it wasn't unexpected. Squeaky didn't like the noise but it didn't last too long, perhaps an hour. There were a few ups and downs before the last steep climb up Black Hill and we christened this route the Durisdeer Rollercoaster.

On the way up Black Hill


We were overtaken by a woman on the way up who was walking very quickly up the hill. We were walking very slowly up the hill  :-[ We'd got our winter bags with us and other warmer gear, the temperature was going to drop overnight, so our packs were heavier than normal.

On Black Hill summit


Wind Turbines from Black Hill


View west from Black Hill


Lowther Hill from Black Hill


We didn't hang around too long. The wind was strong up here and it was freezing.

The start of the Black Hill descent


Still descending Black Hill


The path now became rougher as the quad bike tracks we'd followed up became more faint. We got some water for our lunchtime brew from Wee Capel Cleuch. We needed some respite from the wind and there was a wall we could get behind after Turn Hill

Dalveen pass


We traversed Turn Hill next to the fence rather than go over the top to save us from the wind. The ground was sloping and became very tiresome and we wished we'd gone over the top. We stopped for our lunch above Stonycleugh Rig sheltered by a wall. We saw a couple in the distance and a few others on Penbane but so far except for a few people in the village we'd only spoken to the speedy woman on Black Hill. 

On the way up Well Hill


The ground was much rougher now and this slowed down progress. 

Looking back at Penbane from Well Hill


Well Hill summit view


The steep descent of Well Hill


It was very steep in places on the descent and it seemed to last forever. Squeaky loved it; there were rabbit holes about and she stuck her nose in each one on the way down.

The steep descent of Well Hill and the steep ascent of Durisdeer Hill


The roller coaster route continued. We stopped a few times to catch our breath but before we knew it we had climbed the steepest bit.

Looking back at Durisdeer Hill and Little Scaw'd Law


We'd walked over Durisdeer Hill then we got some water from Kirk Grain before going over Little Scaw'd Law.

The MSR on Scaw'd Law


On Scaw'd Law we found a pitch straight away, it was sheltered from the wind just about but the wind was lighter than earlier on. It was about 4pm so early but we'd seen nobody since we had started the climb up Durisdeer Hill. 

The view north west from Scaw'd Law


We were surprised to see 2 women who walked by the tent before 5pm. It was 2 hours before sunset and we hadn't expected anyone still out  :-[ When I looked at the map though it was only 3 miles to Durisdeer on the quickest route down.

North eastward view from Scaw'd Law


The views were very hazy to the west but better to the east.

The sunset


We'd had our tea sitting outside the tent sheltered from the wind but it did get chilly so we sat inside the tent for the sunset. 

A bit of colour after the sun goes down


Not the best sunset we've ever had but not bad. We had some wine got into our bags and enjoyed the tent time.

Day 1 was Durisdeer - Wether Hill - Black Hill - Turn Hill - Well Hill - Durisdeer Hill - Littke Scaw'd Law - Scaw'd Law. 5.4 miles with 846m ascent and 368m descent.

Day 2

Frozen poles and tent


The temperature did drop overnight along with the wind and there was a ground frost. One water bladder had been outside the fly sheet and that was partially frozen so it took longer to boil the water for our brews. 

I spotted a bit of red and zoomed in and saw there were two tents on Penbane.


We packed our gear and started the descent on the estate path down toward Glenaggart. We knew we may have to reascend if we heard shotguns from the grouse shooters.

On the descent of Scawd Law


Nether Hill from the descent


Squeaky was loving it here, she was in all the grassy clumps having a good sniff about, poking her nose into more rabbit holes and trying to stalk the sheep that were about and also a few grouse that flew up out of the undergrowth. She was on the lead, she really can't be trusted.

A steep drop down to Glenaggart


We weren't going down that way mind, the estate path is mostly an easy gradient down to the valley.

There were no shotguns going off or any sign of grouse shooters so we continued our way past lots of grouse feeders. There must have been thousands of grouse hiding in the heather that took flight as we walked by them. 

Durisdeer Hill and Blackgrain Shoulder


It was another sunny day and it was hot in the valley

Durisdeer from the estate path


At the car we emptied our rucksacks of the tent and sleeping bag etc and walked up the Well Path to visit the roman fortlet before we went home.

Squeaky leading the way up Well Path


The finger post said it was the Wald Path, the map says the Well Path, not sure which is right! On the way to the fortlet we spoke to 2 lads who were on their way back to Durisdeer. I asked them if they were the people who'd camped on Penbane and they were! 2 very canny lads one from Newcastle and one from Washington. It was nice to talk to them, like minded wild campers, respectful of the countryside and appreciating the beauty, leaving no trace. They told us to check their you tube channels, Outdoors Lifestyle and Miles from Anywhere. I had seen the latters You Tube channel because he had been out with Andy Wardle :) 

The Roman Fortlet


The best view of the fortlet is from higher up on one of the hills. I thought I'd taken a shot yesterday when we were on our way to Well Hill but I couldn't see it among my photos.

Lunchtime view


We sat and some food and a brew here and watched some birds of prey flying about. We'd seen some earlier in Glenaggart but we didn't know what make they were. They were hard to photograph because they were moving so fast. 


Looking back toward Penbane


We retraced our steps back to Durisdeer after our lunch. 

We'd had a fantastic wild camp and what a wonderful place this is. Day 2 was Scaw'd Law - Blackgrain Shoulder - Durisdeer - Roman Fortlet - Durisdeer 5 miles with 109m ascent and 588m descent. 
"Who would've thought...... you are light and darkness coming through" words by Tim Armstrong

richardh1905

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Excellent stuff, April - you are really getting your teeth into the Southern Uplands!


I had no idea where Durisdeer was - had to google it.
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henryb

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Great report and photos April, I really like green fields/countryside in my views, so that was a pretty good location which I've never heard of before now O0

April

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you are really getting your teeth into the Southern Uplands!


 :)  We hope to be back somewhere in the Southern Uplands this weekend too. I'd not heard of Durisdeer either yet it is a remarkably beautiful village.


Thanks henry, the views were pretty good  O0
"Who would've thought...... you are light and darkness coming through" words by Tim Armstrong

beefy

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Tremendous
Lovely pics of a great place,
What a fab weekend with sun, views, flat pitch, and best of all peace and quiet O0

Leave only footprints, take only photographs, kill only time ...

#LeaveNoTrace youtube

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Ridge

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Loads and loads of lovely photos April  O0


pleb

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Why do you call it the roller coaster?
Fortlet isn't a real word.
GET ORRRFFF MY LAAAND

richardh1905

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Any chance of a map, April?
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richardh1905

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Your bird of prey looks like a Red Kite - the forked tail is very distinctive.
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richardh1905

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Fortlet isn't a real word.


Collins and Merriam-Webster dictionaries beg to differ.


"a small or rudimentary fort"
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April

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What a fab weekend with sun, views, flat pitch, and best of all peace and quiet O0

One of the best wild camps for a while  O0

Loads and loads of lovely photos April  O0

Thanks Ridge, it is a lovely place  :)

Why do you call it the roller coaster?
Fortlet isn't a real word.

Because it was up, down, up, down, up, down all the way. In the first 1.75 miles there were 4 ups and 3 downs!

Fortlet is a real word, get a dictionary  :D

Any chance of a map, April?

I thought nobody would notice I hadn't put them in  ;D Laziness on my part.

Day 1


Day 2


Your bird of prey looks like a Red Kite - the forked tail is very distinctive.

I had read when doing the research beforehand that there were red kites in the area but couldn't be sure these were red kites. Thanks Richard  O0

Collins and Merriam-Webster dictionaries beg to differ.
"a small or rudimentary fort"

Pleb, look in a dictionary next time   :D
"Who would've thought...... you are light and darkness coming through" words by Tim Armstrong

pleb

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Now if you had said "fartlet"....
GET ORRRFFF MY LAAAND

richardh1905

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Thanks for the maps, April - I like to visualise where people are walking. O0


I know that there are Red Kites in Dumfries and Galloway - saw some flying near Loch Ken a few years ago. The tail is a give away.
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Dovegirl

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Lovely photos of beautiful rolling hills April  :)


I think roller coaster is a good description. Some of my walks on the Sussex coast are like that  :)

karl h

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Another lovely outing for team Squeaky  ;)
But some of these place names.... admit it you're making them up  ;D
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