The day after our Galloway jaunt, the entire country was having a bath in a thunderous downpour. We had hoped to get out and visit some more Galloway hills but it wasn’t to be. There was one tiny forecasted window of opportunity however, in the Pentlands. The Pentlands are another range I had never visited until this weekend, and to be honest, not a range I would have gone out my way to get to, being low-lying, far from home and in the built-up Central Belt. However it was a shame to waste so much money on petrol to get down this far south only to go home again so we decided to make a day of it, and duly drove up to near Penicuik the night before and camped in the van.
I’d scoped out a popular walk, taking in Carnethy Hill and Scald Law. I had heard of this hill before, really because of the association with the Carnethy Hillrunning Club who also organise the classic Pentland Skyline and Carnethy 5 hillraces amongst others. I saw the Pentland Skyline race covered recently also on ‘The Adventure Show’ so was quite keen to visit, as well as Scald Law which I recognised also from hill races.
The day turned out beautiful, sunny and breezy. Ally decided he could do some van maintenance while he was near to Halfords and the like, so I was just by myself. It was a strange walk to do alone because it was crowded with lots of folk, all who were with friends and family. There were very few people on their own like me and I felt a bit like Billy nae-mates amongst the hordes.
I set off from the Visitor Centre carpark and through the well-trodden path through the woods.
Signposts directed me left and over a small bridge until I was climbing steeply up the flanks of Turnhouse Hill. I was thoroughly enjoying it. Although it was crowded, much like the Lake District it was really nice to listen to the hum of chatter all around me as I walked.
When I got to the top of Turnhouse Hill I could see the broad ridge twisting away in front of me.
It was a really pleasant walk up to the huge summit shelter of Carnethy Hill.
From there it was a fairly steep but even downhill to the bealach and then i followed the zig-zagging path up to the summit of Scald Law. Really bonnie for such central hills, and it was nice to see Penicuik, Edinburgh and the sea beyond from these hills.
I retraced my steps back to the bealach and turned down towards Loganlea Reservoir.
Here there were many fishermen, cyclists, families and the like all having a pleasant Sunday. I followed this road back down past both reservoirs towards the Visitor Centre, taking a small signposted detour some trees and via some old filter beds.
It was a perfect walk to blow away the cobwebs from the night before, where Ally and I had had a few whiskies. I was surprised how lovely a walk it was for these hills – they are so familiar to many but totally new to me. I will definitely find time to revisit this area if I am down this way again.