The Whangie March 2014
Helen Rose Outdoors Diary
In early Spring I went with the Wednesday Wanderers, a branch of Bearsden and Milngavie Ramblers to the Whangie. The website is at www.bearsdenandmilngavieramblers.org.uk/ The Whangie is a well known landmark near Carbeth just outside Glasgow not far from the Glengoyne Malt Whisky Distillery. It is usually accessed from Queens View but we did a longer route from a different direction.
The Wednesday Wanderers have a walk every second Wednesday to include a morning coffee before the start of the walk and a lunch afterwards. It is all very sociable but we do a walk of about six or seven miles between the refreshments. There is an organising group of four people who put a tremendous amount of work into planning the walks which includes reccying the eating places. I am now an expert in coffee and scones in the central Scotland belt! These walks have taken me to places I have not known about within about an hour’s travelling distance of Milngavie.
The Whangie is a bizarre rock-feature in the Kilpatrick Hills, and has wonderful views towards Loch Lomond, the Highlands and the Campsie Hills. The usual approach is from Carbeth but we drove to the path at Burncrook reservoir to make it a longer circular walk in a lollipop shape. Unusually for the Wanderers this walk was partly on rough ground but it was dry with the rain only coming on at the end of the walk. We joined the path and had a bit of downhill walking over rocks to reach the main path. This is like a mini hill walk and with wonderful views over to Loch Lomond and the islands in it.
We kept close to the bottom of the steep ground and very soon the entrance to the Whangie was reached. We climbed up a worn rocky slope to enter the massive gash in the rock. We walked all the way through this narrow cleft, divided from the open air by a wall only a few feet thick on the left side. The walls of the Whangie have been used as a training ground for generations of rock climbers. The walls are over 50 feet high and provide a wide range of climbing grades, the climbing enhanced by the fine situation. Another path keeps to the left and stays outside the Whangie and shows the full height of the narrow outer wall. This remarkable feature is completely hidden and unsuspected on the approach across the otherwise unremarkable moors from Burncrook Reservoir.
We left the Whangie to pick up the path over the moors towards Burncrook Reservoir still taking in the views over to Loch Lomond. I have walked up to the Whangie many times years ago but I cannot recall ever walking through the central gash. It is indeed dramatic. I will be writing about more of the Wednesday Wanderers Walks in due course. We drove to a local hostelry for lunch and a good discussion on the Whangie. Very convivial.
Many thanks to the organising group all of whom put a lot of hard work into the organisation of the walks. Trevor bravely walked on after injuring his ankle but is now back walking again.
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Coming attractions; Derwentwater in the Lake District and the West Highland Way, Rowardennan to Inverarnan.
This section: Helen Rose Hillwalking Diary
Filed under: Helen Rose Hillwalking Diary
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