26th January 2022
I was joined by Grant and Steve for the first Tuesday walk of the year on the Lomonds, known locally as the Paps of Fife. We met at 10am in the Tay Bridge car park, on the Fife side, before driving to East Lomond, half an hour away.
The weather was pretty gloomy as we exited the car, with low cloud obscuring the summits. A cold westerly wind meant jackets, hats and gloves were part of the dress code.
The walk takes you straight into an ascent of East Lomond. It is not too arduous and we were soon at the summit and searching for the best way down. There are no made up paths so it is a bit of a scramble down one of the many, muddy scars in the hillside.
Safely down, we joined the main path that took us first to the car park above Falkland, and onwards to West Lomond.
The cloud remained low and the visibility poor as we walked on into the chilling wind.
After and hour and a quarter we began the ascent of West Lomond, first on a wide Land Rover track, before branching left up a steeper, narrower mud track. Fortunately it had been dry for at least a couple of weeks, so the mud was fairly solid. It took about twenty minutes to the top. There were quite a few people passing us in the opposite direction and we exchanged pleasantries.
As we hit the top so the wind seemed to strengthen and the temperature dropped.
We had a quick stop for photos, delayed only while I changed the battery on the camera, which was flat.
Grant and Steve tried the flying manoeuvre but their weight counted against them and we were all forced to walk back down the way we came. The track was quite slippy and Steve lost his footing, but fortunately no damage was done. His fall encouraged us to deploy walking poles to avoid further mishap.
We decided to have our lunch in the Falkland car park and so we walked on for perhaps another 45 minutes. It was a fairly swift lunch stop due to the cold wind.
As we approached East Lomond again we decided to skirt the hill as opposed to ascending the shoulder; a longer but flatter route.
The cloud lifted as we entered the last half mile and provided the opportunity to see some of the great views on offer from this walk and also to get our cameras out.
We were back at the car, having walked 8 and a half miles in three and a quarter hours and summited two peaks.
A nice, gentle, if cold outing on the hills.
(Ed: It doesn’t look too bad, does it? But if you want to see what it was really like, check out this video that Grant took on the way down from West Lomond.)