Hill: Hill of Garvock
Date: Sunday 24th January 2016
Company: Myself and Becky

We left our hotel south of Glasgow early this morning with a view to ascending Meikle Bin, which would be a new hill for both myself and Becky. The weather was not however in our favour as we drove along flooded roads to get to the starting point. On arriving at the starting point, we sat in the car waiting for a break in the relentless rain. Several other cars with occupants were doing likewise. After waiting thirty minutes with no sign of the rain stopping, we set off for home with a view to potentially ascending a new hill for Becky during the journey home.

The weather remained poor until north of Forfar beyond which the rain had stopped but there was still low cloud. We agreed to ascend the very easy Hill of Garvock near Laurencekirk.

We parked at the road high-point where there is a small car park. On the plus-side, thanks to the low cloud we couldn't see any of the nearby wind turbines .

Click here to see a map of the route undertaken

From the car park, we climbed over a gate to enter a field and then followed the length of the barbed/electrified fence towards the Hill of Garvock.

Looking back along the fence towards the car park:

On my last ascent of this hill in 2010, I had to negotiate gates with barbed-wire wrapped round the top of them. There were no such obstacles today, in fact most gates were open.

Heading through one of the open gates:

As we progressed the short distance towards the summit we passed lots of cowpats but fortunately no cattle.

Approaching Johnston Tower at the summit of Hill of Garvock:

On reaching the summit, we ascended the wide cairn and was suprised to find the Johnston Tower door open.

Becky standing next to Johnston Tower:

Johnston Tower and the trig point:

As the door was open, I ventured up inside the tower taking care as the steps are very worn and were wet and slippery.

Steps leading up inside Johnston Tower:

I only climbed up as high as reaching a broken step. As I was with Becky, I decided not to risk climbing higher as there is a considerable drop below this broken step.

Dodgy step higher up:

Looking up inside Johnston Tower:

After descending the tower, we retraced our inbound route back to the car.

It was disappointing for me to not get up Meikle Bin but Becky was happy with Hill of Garvock. This was Becky's 30th Marilyn (1/20th of the way to the Hall of Fame).