Willie’s View: A Day In The Cleish Hills

Shutterstock / D MacDonald © day in the cleish hills

Willie spends a day in the Cleish Hills, exploring his own backyard.

How often we tend to overlook places right on our own doorstep. The grass is always greener elsewhere. Living in Kinross-shire, I’m spoiled for choice. The county is full of fine hill-walking country and all just a few minutes from home.

It really is nice, now and then, to have a day that doesn’t entail driving hundreds of miles before getting the boots on!

So, with a piece in my pocket, today I thought I’d escape to Cleish and pay a visit to hidden Loch Glow. And a few of the hills rising above it.

day in the cleish hills

Cleish. Photo by Willie Shand.

With much of the commercial forest having recently been felled, the track from above Nivingston now gives some great views. Vistas away to the Ochils and Lomonds and, indeed, over much of the county.

A Popular Spot

day in the cleish hills

Fishing on Loch Glow. Photo by Willie Shand.

Loch Glow is a popular spot with anglers and there were quite a number trying their luck this morning. Afraid I don’t have the patience for that sport!

Climbing through a band of trees to reach the 1243 feet high Dumglow involved a bit of zigzagging. Windfall from the recent storms had blown over several trees. It was worth it, though. With far-reaching all-round views, you’ll soon see why this summit was the obvious choice for a fort.

day in the cleish hills

On the summit of Dumglow. Photo by Willie Shand.

Some fog lay in the valley of the Forth but out to the west, near Stirling, the Wallace Monument was sticking its head above it. Folk down in the valley would be totally oblivious to the lovely day only a couple of miles away. It’s still only March, yet temperatures would reach 20 deg. C. by the afternoon.

Heading East

day in the cleish hills

In the Cleish Hills. Photo by Willie Shand.

A mile or so east was my next destination – the site of another ancient hill fort and the summit of Dummiefarline. From it, we can look down over the reed-covered Lurg Loch and Dow Loch.

The Cleish Hills may not be as demanding as the Ochils, but a day exploring some of the tracks around Dumglow and Dummiefarline can be no less rewarding.



Read about Willie’s trip to Oban with a 1922 guidebook in this week’s issue – March 30.

For more from our Willie’s View series, click here.

Willie Shand