Seagulls at Largs, Scotland

This evening, I am reporting on today’s walk around Knock Hill, near Largs ¬†on the West of Scotland. This circuit extends to 8 miles in course of which the group encountered an electic mix of sights including dead sheep, a lamentation of swans, stunning views over the Firth of Clyde, a castle, mating frogs and pony and trap.

STAGE 1

From the car park head north along the promenade, passing the RNLI lifeboat station and Vikingar on the right, before reaching Noddsdale Water and turning inland. The route follows the newAyrshire Coastal Path, and the green waymarks will accompany you for the majority of the walk, indicating any changes in direction. Follow the footpath to reach the A78 road, turn right and then left to enter Barr Crescent. Look out for a footpath on the left that runs alongside the stream – this is waymarked – and follow it until emerging onto Glen Avenue, part of a housing estate. Turn left and follow to reach the main junction with Brisbane Glen Road.

STAGE 2

Turn left and follow the road, initially on pavement but then on the road itself as open countryside is reached. Take care and be aware of cars ignoring the ‘advisory’ 30mph speed limit on this section. Keep an eye open for the track to Brisbane Mains Farm on the left – again it is well waymarked but easy to miss if focusing on the countryside unfurling as the road leaves civilisation. Take this path as it gently ascends the hillside, pass through the farmyard avoiding the kamikaze free-range chickens and strike out along the muddy farm track, part of the Ayrshire Coastal Path.

STAGE 3

As the angle of ascent increases the path becomes boggier. Take the left (waymarked) fork at the end of a small copse to head northwest along a grassy track following the 145m contour line. At a second fork remain on the main track (left) to begin the approach to the hill fort and trig point. As the path spirals up the hill the Cumbrae islands and the Firth of Clyde come into view giving a taster of the 360 degree panorama that meets you at the summit. Retrace your steps for one kilometre (ignoring an old waymarker) all the way back to the second fork. This time take the track now on your left (would have been straight on if you had omitted Knock Hill) to begin the descent towards Blackhouse Burn.

STAGE 4

Now back on the Ayrshire Coastal Path, follow the route across sometimes muddy farmland, ignoring a path heading off to the left, to enter a small wooded area where leaf litter creates a pleasing cushion underfoot. Upon reaching the metalled road by Manor Park Hotel, turn left to follow this quiet single track road south, passing the privately owned Knock Castle and Routenburn Golf Course whilst marvelling at the great views across the Clyde. Eventually the main A78 is reached, upon crossing the bridge over Noddsdale Water, tun right to retrace your steps along the promenade to the car park.

Here is a selection of images:

Spring Lambs

Lamentation of Swans

Knock Hill Castle ( 1852)

Hiking Group

 

Firth of Clyde View

 

Great Cumbrae and Firth of Clyde,Scotland

Mating Frogs

Hiking group encounters Pony and Trap

 

Great Cumbrae and Firth of Clyde, Scotland

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