Fife Hills A to Z : I


At girst glance it might seem strange including this 497m eastern Ochil in a Fife A-Z, as it does not lie within Fife. However, there are a lack of hills in Fife beginning with I and Innerdouny is topographically very significant for much of north Fife.

Innerdouny Hill (located between Yetts of Muckhart and Dunning) is the parent Marilyn for the ground north of the A91 and west of Collessie Den. This area contains a number of significant hills including 4 Humps (hills with 100m and upwards prominence).

Lumbennie Hill at 284m is the 12th highest hill in Fife and the highest point within Pitmedden Forest. In itself it’s not an overly exciting hill as it is covered with conifer plantings and accessed via a rough fire break. Nearby, in the Strathmiglo area, is the more attractive rough grassland of 275m Pitlour Hill which is easily approached via tracks through the Pitlour Estate.

The cluster of hills around Lindores / Newburgh is well worth mentioning, namely, Cowden Hill, Black Hill, Woodheads Hill and Ormiston Hill. These hills offer a number of routes for the walker. Black Hill and Woodheads Hill, like Lumbennie, have their summits coated with conifer plantings but Cowden Hill across the road is a good viewpoint for the area and has a track almost to its summit.

So despite not being in Fife, Innerdouny does provide us with some fine hill summits to explore.

Check out the Ochils Outliers 1 and Ochils Outliers 2 pages for routes up these hills.

Fife Hills A to Z : H

Hill of Beath

At 240m this is a prominent hill between Dunfermline and Cowdenbeath, very obvious from the M90 motorway. It makes for a grand outing for a couple of hours and affords fine views over the surrounding area.

It can be approached from a number of directions and my personal favourite is via the lovely Dalbeath Marshes Nature Reserve. This former quarry / open cast site is now a haven of tranquility with wetlands and woodlands. For a short easy outing the best approaches are probably from Crossgates or Hill of Beath village and up the grassy path on its southern slope.

The hill is surrounded by core paths with one heading over the eastern shoulder. Although it is possible to walk right around the hill on the core paths, the ground to the northern side is somewhat rough and may not be to everyone’s liking.

Check out the Hill of Beath page for details of the different routes up the hill and for a circular walk from Dalbeath Marshes.

Fife Hills A to Z : G

Glenduckie Hill

A great wee multi-summited hill near Newburgh in the north of Fife that lies just a stone’s throw from the Fife Coastal Path. Most walkers on the coastal path stroll around this hill without even considering including it in their walk.

The main 218m summit is clad in trees and does not offer much in the way of views. Better though, is the open 200m (approx) summit to the south west, the site of a hill fort and a good viewpoint for the surrounding countryside.

This summit is easy to reach via tracks and paths that circle the hill, including the Fife Coastal Path that skirts the eastern and northern slopes. An upturned stone marks the summit along with the remains of a memorial bench. Visiting during the winter months when the trees are not in leaf is recommended. For the energetic walker it is easy enough to combine Glenduckie Hill with its better known neighbour Norman’s Law. Glenduckie is for the connoisseur though looking to escape the crowds that sometimes flock to Norman’s Law.

Check out the Norman’s Law and Glenduckie Hill page on Fife Walking for more information on this hill.

Fife Hills A to Z : F

Fleecefaulds Hill (210m) and Flagstaff Hill (214m)

Two lesser known hills this week. Both these hills are high points in the flat landscape of the East Neuk of Fife.

Fleecefaulds Hill, on the Teasses Estate near Ceres, can be accessed from the attractive Fleecefaulds Meadow Nature Reserve and combined with a walk around the nature reserve. The hill summit itself is scrubland but it is surrounded by working countryside, gardens and residential property so ensure you are adhering to the Scottish Outdoor Access Code and respect the rights of the people who live and work there. Keep dogs under close control.

Flagstaff Hill can be accessed via the Balcarres Estate near Colinsburgh which is itself a popular destination for walkers. Although the hill itself is nothing special (though it does have good views over to Largo Law) the nearby Balcarres Craig with its folly / tower is worth a visit, as is Balcarres Den and the old mill. Even though there are core paths in the area, this is still a working estate so respect it as such and obey any signs regarding dogs on leads.

More information on these hills is available from Fife Walking .

A to Z of Fife’s Hills : E

East Lomond (Falkland Hill)

This is possibly the most well known hill in Fife and as such attracts many visitors to its summit viewpoint. At 448m it has the distinction of being the second highest hill in the Kingdom.

There are numerous routes by which the walker can reach the summit. For the walker who “doesn’t do hills” it is possible to drive up to the high car park on its eastern slopes from where it is a straightforward walk with less than 100m of ascent (climbing) to reach the summit. Other popular and busy routes start from Craigmead and Falkland. Much quieter are the approaches from the south starting from the Pitcairn / Formonthills area of north Glenrothes.

The summit was the site of an iron age fort and there have been recent excavations on the site. The Living Lomonds Partnership has produced an artist’s impression of what the site may once have looked like.

A well preserved lime kiln sits at the foot of the hill on its south western flank. A wander around this site makes a worthwhile addition to an ascent of the hill.

Check out Fife Walking’s East Lomond page for more information on routes up this hill.

A to Z of Fife’s Hills : D

Drumcarrow Craig

At 218m Dumcarrow Craig is a craggy wee hill in the east of Fife (close to St Andrews) that can easily be incorporated into a walk along the Fife Pilgrim Way route. Access is easy via a signposted track directly from a minor road near Craigton.

The main summit area is adorned with the obvious communications masts that can be seen for some distance, along with a cairn and an Ordnance Survey trig point. Of an older vintage though, are the remains of an iron age broch close to the summit. The hill is a lumpy hillock and as such sports a second west summit as well as the main summit.

North of the summit is the site of the Denork Craig hill fort. Reaching it from Drumcarrow is not straightforward but is certainly possible if you don’t mind a bit of rough off-path walking.

A suggested walk to Drumcarrow is described on the Cameron Reservoir and Drumcarrow page.