Abroath to Arbirlot

The double bridge
The double bridge

There is a children’s poem which begins, “One misty, moisty morning, when cloudy was the weather”, and this kept rattling through my head during our last walk.

You can no doubt guess what the weather was like without my having to say more!

Crashing waves

Crashing waves

On Tuesday October 27, 29 of us met in the West Links car-park in Arbroath. Twenty of us did the long walk while the remaining nine opted for the shorter; as it was, both groups did more or less the same walk but in different directions.

The main group set off over the grass on the Links, to where there is a double railway bridge. It crosses two railway lines side by side, so you go up and over then down a bit, up a bit, over and down the other side. From here we walked to the big roundabout at Elliot, beside the golf club, on the road to Dundee. Then it was path, cycle path and road, past Balcathie and the entrance to Kelly Castle, until at last we reached Arbirlot. I had always thought the castle was spelled “Kellie” and so it is shown on maps, but the sign at the end of the drive definitely was the more modern “Kelly”.

Arbirlot is a quaint little village which appeared to have two churches and two graveyards. The wall round the more modern graveyard has a stone wheel inset into it. However it was to the older graveyard that we took ourselves and had our lunch in the grounds of the Church there. Just as we were finishing, the other group appeared, ready for their lunch.

Our way back was very picturesque, despite the weather. At the side of a bridge over the Elliot Water, we descended some steps, admired a lovely waterfall, then walked along the water’s edge for a fair bit. The next part of our walk was along the old railway line from Elliot to Carmyllie via Arbirlot. It was used to carry slate from the quarries at Carmyllie to the harbour at Arbroath, and further afield via the main railway line. It closed as recently as 1984 and the rails were lifted to make way for the footpath.

One of the groups on their lunch

One of the groups on their lunch

Finally, we walked back across the links to the car-park. Although it wasn’t windy the waves were crashing and spraying good style against the wall and the footpath was covered in all sorts of debris from the sea. Distance covered was probably about 6 miles. Next walk meet at old Smiddy and Joinery in Fettercairn.

The stone wheel

The stone wheel