We recently visited Angus for a short break. Our aim was to hike, explore more of the region and take in a historic site or two.
We achieved all three of our aims and in this this blog I’ll be showcasing our Angus highlights:
Our first hike was to visit the scenic Loch Brandy. It climbed to an elevation of 410 meters to reach the small loch, which sits nestled in a mountain corrie.
I had reservations about the hike as we had The Teen in tow. Memories of a disastrous Conic Hill Expedition were still fresh in my mind. It soon became apparent on that particular day trip to Loch Lomond, that despite being built like a jockey’s whip The Teen wasn’t going to reach the summit of Conic Hill. A modest 361 meter pimple with spectacular views of Loch Lomond. We left her sitting on a rock half way up, jelly legged from her efforts. We bagged the summit with The Wee White Dug, along with a steady stream of pensioners, toddlers and out of shape adults.
Luckily, my concerns were unfounded as despite her obvious loathing of every uphill step, she made it to Loch Brandy. She was chuffed with herself too. We’d weathered a teenage tantrum earlier that morning and had only just managed to persuade her to change out of her original choice of hiking attire. A floaty, short playsuit, thick black tights and a leather biker jacket.
It was a scorcher of a day which made our climb uphill hard going and thirsty work. Loch Brandy was beautiful though and well worth the effort. The Wee White Dug tentatively dipped his toes into the water to cool off but refused to wade any deeper. Possibly trying to avoid being spirited away by a kelpie lurking in the deep, dark water.
After our hike we rewarded ourselves with an al fresco lunch and a well-earned round of cold drinks. The boy enjoying a bowl of water followed by a snooze.
Hike: Glen Doll Ranger Station – Corrie Fee
Mountain corries were the theme of the weekend, as the following day we hiked to Corrie Fee. We’d done the walk before, but en-route to bag the Munros Mayar and Dreish, and not to enjoy the beauty of the corrie in its own right.
The walk from the ranger station to Corrie Fee is quite tedious as it winds uphill through featureless woodland which feels like it’s never-ending. The corrie destination is this world though, so the trudge there is quickly forgotten.
Corrie Fee is a stunning natural amphitheatre with a waterfall, a winding stream, purple heather and wild Alpine flowers. It’s one of Scotland’s National Nature Reserves and for me is the stand out gem of the Angus Glens. It’s beautifully rugged and if you’re lucky you may get it all to yourself.
It was another scorcher of a day, so we rewarded ourselves with time to sit and enjoy the sunshine and phenomenal view.
Before heading back we climbed down to the stream on the corrie floor. There was a small pool of crystal clear water there. The Wee White Dug deemed it to be the perfect spot for his first ever swim. We brimmed with pride at his efforts in between snorts of laughter. It may have been a short and cautious swim but he did it – he swam. Hooray for braving new experiences.
Exploring Kirriemuir: ACDC & Peter Pan
We couldn’t visit Angus without stopping at Kirriemuir to pay homage to its famous sons, JM Barrie and Bon Scott of ACDC fame.
JM Barrie was born in the town and spent his early years there. His birthplace is now a museum in the care of the National Trust for Scotland. Peter Pan is one of my all time favourite books and a statue of the boy who never grew up is given pride of place in the centre of town.
Bon Scott, one time lead singer of the rock band ACDC also spent his early years in Kirriemuir before emigrating to Australia as a child. Sadly, Scott died in 1980. Last month, a statue of him was unveiled in Kirriemuir in the year he would have turned 70.
And the music was good and the music was loud, and the singer turned to the crowd and said ‘Let there be rock’.
Glamis Castle was the last stop on our wonderful weekend in Angus. The castle was the childhood home of the Queen Mother and has been the ancestral seat of the Clan Lyon since the 14th century.
The boy loved his visit to the castle. Probably because he was offered a doggy treat on the way in. The way to his heart is definitely through his stomach.
The vast castle and grounds are beautiful. The place has a real happy and relaxed vibe to it. We wandered around the immaculate lawns, the woodland nature trail and Italian Garden.
After exploring the grounds we had Arran ice cream, raspberry lemonade and sandwiches from the castle cafe for lunch. It was the perfect end to a lovely trip.
Until next time ……..