Sunday, April 27, 2014

Kinpurney Tower...and two appealing old kayaks.

The goal: a wee smidge of a "dot" on the top of Kinpurney Hill.
Leaving home for a short 12 mile jaunt from Forfar, through Glamis, and over to the village of Newtyle, the front and rear fog lights were illuminated - a very heavy fog suggesting there would be no views today. Arriving at the car park, the mist suddenly seemed to vanish and the sun shone brightly on the Sidlaws, the volcanic range of hills extending from Perth to Forfar.

The gorse was in brilliant bloom, smelling like coconut, the sheep tended to their recently born lambs.

The hike, steeper than it first appeared, began alongside a bubbling mill stream, through a lightly forested area of oak, rowan, and sycamore. After passing through a series of "kissing gates", the well marked trail continued into open grazing land, all the way to the summit at 1132 ft.. What we'd assumed would be a mere "walk in the park" had us breathing deeply - there would be some good exercise today after all. :)

The last remaining trees on the summit hold a lonely vigil near the ruined tower, and are carefully guarded from the sheep. They appear as three brave "souls" bent by the constant and prevailing winds.

Kinpurney Tower was built in 1774 by James Mckenzie, the Lord Privy of Scotland. Once an observatory, it is now just a shell of three foot thick walls. This is Shakespeare's "MacBeth" country...and there is a sense of mystery and intrigue in the "air".

Kinpurney Tower., and the site of an unfinished Iron Age hill fort.
Another tale is told of a young man, who agreed to be locked in the tower for seven years - for a wager of £100.

Fiona Lang tells a good story in her blog, The Avoidant Writer...

...he won the wager. But by the time he was released he was in a desperately frail state. All those who came to witness his victory were shocked to see that his hair was now waist-length and grey, and his fingernails were so long that they were like a bird's talons. He appeared to have prematurely aged and, most dreadful of all, he had lost the power of speech and was only capable of grunting.Though he was put in the care of doctors in Dundee, the young man died shortly after leaving the tower.

Low cloud reduced the visibility but from the nearby viewing station and trig point, some 24 Munros are visible on a clear day. 

Another place to be..."on top of the world".
The lambs have grown so much since they first began to appear several weeks ago.

His eyes never left us!
A lovely colt at the trail head farm posed patiently.

At a time when our sea kayaks seem SO far away, these two white water boats looked pretty appealing! Many years ago, we had one exactly like the one on the right.

They would probably LOVE to be back in the water! 
Somehow, a very pleasant hike to the top of a hill gave fullness and definition to the term, "simple pleasures".

It was enough just to be outside, and breathing deeply - of course, it usually is. :)


  1. Ah I love the cute little lambs....I was in the UK in April a few years back and loved seeing their little faces. Looks like a glorious day to be out in the hills.

  2. Indeed it was, L, and blue skies and warm temperatures continue. I have some wonderful pics of some other furry faces...coming soon. :) Thanks for your comment. D.

  3. Another spot to add to my "must go there list" Duncan :-)

    Kind Regards


  4. Such "lists" are endless in life. :) Thanks for that, Ian, and best wishes. Duncan.