Sunday, 11 November 2012

Looking for piles of rocks

Cairn on Mongour with TV mast
Near the top of the slug road, on the way from Stonehaven to Crathes, near the Durris TV mast, there's an exposed hill top with a cairn on the top. Having spotted this hill quite a few times, I became curious as to what it was and how to get there. After identifying it from the map as Craigbeg and noting that there was another cairn on nearby Mongour that I'd never seen, I decided to explore.
Starting at the car park near Spyhill cottage, I followed the route of the Durris mast race route as far as the benches on the top of Mongour and then continued East past a small stone shelter and along a wee track through the trees which then came to a wee clearing containing a substantial cairn, larger and better built than I was expecting.

The entry to the "tunnel of doom" - not today!

I kept on the track down to the access road for the mast where I was able to rejoin the race route just where it heads off the road through another fire break and across the stony gully. At this point the race turns left and enters the "tunnel of doom" but my path kept me going forwards onto a heather covered hilltop, devoid of any obvious paths or signs that anyone had been there in some time - it was hard going but before too long, I reached the cairn, next to a stunted tree, from where there were fine views across to Cairn mon Earn and back down the valley towards Stonehaven. To get back to the car, I dropped down to the North East, quickly found the track going round the hill and followed it back to the access road and then back down to the car park.
Looking towards Cairn mon Earn from Craigbeg

As "long" runs go, 5 miles in 1hr22 doesn't sound too impressive, but at least every time we drive over the slug, I can point up at the wee cairn and say "I've been there!". mrs s will never tire of hearing that, I'm sure!
Approximate route taken

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