We haven’t been out for a walk for several weeks but on Sunday last with the forecast fine and cold, we finally made it out. Not that it was a great mountain walk in freezing winter conditions or anything …… just a gentle low level wander up Glen Luss.
We had planned to try and get up onto the hills on the south side of the glen and this would have needed a reasonably early start. Alas, despite the fine day, the roads were very icy first thing and so we in fact left later and instead of a walk on the hills we had a walk between them!
It’s a beautiful spot though and Loch Lomond looked lovely in the still cold morning air. The hills had some snow on their upper slopes and Ben Lomond further to the north and across the loch, look particularly fine in the sun. Having decided that their was now no rush, we made use of the café and grabbed ourselves a cup of coffee before setting out and then headed to the start of a path we’d noticed many times before, (but never walked) that was marked ‘Quarry path’. It headed into the woods and quickly led down to a footbridge over the Luss Water …which ran clear and green. We’d always hoped that this path might lead through the woods on the south side of the glen and to a point where we could reach the open hillside. But of course it wasn’t for doing that …instead it followed the river back towards the loch and almost before we knew what was happening it went under the main A82 and a little further on, joined the old road that led back to Luss! It had gone away from the hills not towards them! Nothing for it but to retrace our steps back to a couple of side paths we’d noticed. The first one seemed hopeful, leading through the woods in roughly the right direction, but after another couple of hundred metres we reached a fence with a sign saying ‘access to cottage only, please return to bridge over the Luss Water and follow sign for the hills’! The only sign we knew and had seen for the hills was the one pointing to the path up Beinn Dubh on the north side of the glen …a walk we’d done many times before. The second little side path we’d seen, meandered through the trees on the north side of the stream but then faded out at a view point over looking the green water ….very nice but not quite what we were looking for.
I should really have looked at the hill guide before setting out as this I know has a route leading up onto the southern Glen Luss Hills …but of course in our over relaxed start I didn’t think. By the time we’d got back to the small single track road leading up the glen it was about 11.45 and so we simply decided to walk it to the end of the tarmac and then continue along the track heading west through the glen. The tarmac runs for several kilometres to just below the base of Mid Hill and we’d walked back along it a good number of times after completing the circuit of Beinn Dubh and Mid Hill, but we’d never just walked it for its’ own sake …just to enjoy the views of the hills all around.
And so that was our walk ….a gentle wander along a single track road through Glen Luss. It really was beautiful though, the low winter sun illuminating the hills with their snow covered tops. At the end of the tarmac a slight detour is needed to avoid walking through a small farm. A footpath leads away from the main track and skirts the hill for a few hundred metres before picking up the main track again. This was very icy and we were skating around like mad things. The track beyond looked almost solid ice and so it seemed like a good spot to sit and have lunch and just enjoy the peace and quiet. I put the ‘spiders’ on, (small in-step crampons) to make things easier on the ice and then we headed back….reaching Luss in time for another cup of coffee. It had been a strange and slightly different walk to that originally planned …but very enjoyable and very relaxing too …just what was needed.