Mearns Walking Group - A Walk around Kirriemuir

Mearns Walking Group - Kinnordy Loch
Mearns Walking Group - Kinnordy Loch

A walk in Kirriemuir is always enjoyable whatever the weather, and we had all sorts of weather on our last walk: rain, hail, snow, wind and blue sky.

To be fair there was probably more blue sky than anything else, but it was very cold.

Mearns Walking view from just above Westmuir

Mearns Walking view from just above Westmuir

Twenty-two of us met at Bellies Brae Car-park on Tuesday March 31 – a day when fine but showery weather had been forecast. Ten walkers opted for the shorter walk, leaving 12 of us doing the longer one.

From the car-park we descended the steps to walk along the side of the Garrie Burn. This route took us through Kirriemuir Den, well worth a visit if you’ve never been. There is a children’s play area near the start of this bit of the walk, then the path wanders along the side of the burn. On the other side of the water, gardens rise up steeply to the houses above; the gardens are all a fair size and cannot be easy to maintain.

Near the far end of the Den we took a path which climbed steadily until we reached the road (B951) which we crossed to a path sign-posted “Loch Kinnordy”. Once again there was water on our right, and I assume this was still the Garrie Burn. The single track path was muddy in places but it’s a nice flat walk. We passed the “bug hotels” that we had seen on a previous walk. These are little structures with different kinds of wood in them, designed to encourage bugs. Last time we saw them they were quite new; now they are past their best.

Soon we reached the first of the Loch Kinnordy bird hides, and as it was quite cold, decided to have lunch there. Just as we were finishing, the other group of walkers arrived so they had to move on to the next hide. There are three in all, but we only visited the first.

On leaving the hide we made our way to the B951 and walked along to Lochside Cottage, where we turned left. This road eventually took us up to a sort of ridge above Westmuir. The few houses up there are terrible exposed to all weathers but the views are fantastic!

What goes up must come down, so we descended to the little village of Westmuir, where we crossed the A926, Blairgowrie road and went along an unclassified road, the surface of which deteriorated as we walked.

We passed Plovermuir Farm, which is home to Patchwork Cottage, a great place to buy materials, if you are that way inclined (and I am!!), but it is only open by appointment.

Further along, we met a lady with two beautiful dalmatians, and it was shortly after this that the hail-stones started! When they eased, there were one or two flakes of snow, but it would have been easy to miss them. By this time we were back in Kirrie itself and only a short distance from the car-park.

I’m not sure how far we walked, but I’d guess about fivemiles.

We could hear birds singing in the trees, although we didn’t see many.

At the bird hide, we saw ducks and swans on the water, but were perhaps more interested in our lunches than in the wild-life outside.

The next walk will be on Tuesday April 14 starting from the car-park atTayport.

As usual, the minibus will leave the Burgh Buildings in Laurencekirk at 10am.