If it had been1!st April would have thought I was being the fool but sure it is May and myself and Gaba had a full blizzard as we tried to run up Black Craig. Tried being the operative word as heather and snow kept pace down, it must have been bad as gaba ignored the deer of which thre were several groups, the first just meters away..
Good news is ankle sort of held up so may be ok for race next weekend.
We took the track from Greystone and collected the two points. As Derek & Evelyn pointed out there is a track on the south side of the fence which takes you to the top of Black Craig. We then continued to Slai an Gour and followed the fence line to the track to Deecastle. We turned off to the SW at the top of the plantation to bring us directly back to Greystone trying to avoid the electric fence we previously experienced in a night run. Beautiful day for it.
After visiting the Rocking Stone, we re-traced our footsteps to the Etnach track and set out for Black Craig
At the gate we found a trod on the north side of the fenceline and then switched to a land-rover track on the south. DaveH and JaneO didn’t like this part but it wasn’t too bad. It was dry for us, maybe that helped.
After the cp, we left to the north using a bearing to the waypoint we had taken on the way up at the plantation above Ettrick Croft. Although this meant quite a bit of heather work, at least we were going downhill and cut-off the corner.
Summer is here so it’s time to get the mountain bike out. Started from Greystone and slogged my way up the path towards Etnach. At the top, go through the gate and there is a track immediately on the left that goes all the way to the top of Black Craig (and continues down to Halfway Hut). It is all rideable, just about, but is getting very overgrown and it would probably be quicker to run. Not that running would be much fun given the deep heather. Returned back to the gate, went back through it and immediately on the other side there is a track that goes down to Ballaterach and near to the rocking stone. It is indistinct to start with, then very boggy, but just before it starts to go properly downhill there is a big cairn on the left. This is as close to the stone as you can get on a bike, it’s only about 200m away. From here down the track is very good riding, although the farmyard at the bottom spoils the experience a bit. Only 13km in total with 400m climb but it took me 90 minutes.
Parked at Deecastle ,ran along the road to Tombae then up the track , through a bog and then following the fence line to the top , through horrible Heather. This really is a very unpleasant climb. The compensation is the views from the top and total peace and tranquillity of the hillside.
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Fri 6th March – a windy day up to the Big Stane or Rocking Stone. Then on to Black Craig with the wind in my back.
Good run off the tops to the east but then took a ‘shortcut’ through the heather – not recommended.
With no path shown on the map, I started my ascent of Black Craig from the old drove road to Glentanar at Tombae. When I reached the conifers I struck up through the heather until I reached a fence then followed it up to the summit. There I found a track of sorts which appeared to go down to Glentanar. Fine views again. Lochnagar looked stormy. I spotted a jay, a flock of fieldfares, four greyhens and a red grouse plus three roe deer.
>> Continuation of Thursday night’s run. From the board walk we headed round the east side of Loch davan towards the cp. The outlet burn looked a bit big to cross (with hindsight, it would have been worth trying) so headed east to the road (along terrible ground) and back to the Loch past the earthworks. From cp we continued west round the Loch and back to the burn o’vat (via bogingore, to pick up Sam’s gloves). > Total run was 2hrs and just under 10 miles.
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