Hills: Black Craig (203m), Green Craig (189m), Tay Mount (189m), Green Hill (186m), Coultra Hill (178m)
These small hills in the north of Fife can easily be incorporated into a walk along the Fife Coastal Path. When you reach the public road after walking from Balmerino a left turn takes you to the area of Green Hill, Coultra Hill and Tay Mount whilst turning right along the route of the coastal path takes you to the Hazelton Wells crossroads. Black Craig and Green Craig are located on your right after the crossroads.
If not walking the coastal path the best parking option is a small layby to the east of the track up Black Craig.
Tay Mount (189m)
This hill can be accessed via a gateless field entrance on your right 220m north east from where the coastal path meets the public road. Head into this field and follow the tractor track along the edge of the trees for 200m to a point where the fence bears right. From here a path makes its way uphill through the woodland to reach a stile. Cross the stile and head up the hill to the summit area where there is a trig point and a fenced off area around the base of pine trees.
Easiest return is by your outward route. If you are tempted to follow the path alongside the wall after the stile you will have to thrash your way through the trees to regain the road.
Green Hill (186m)
Access to this hill is via a forest track on your left 200m north east from the junction of the coastal path and road. There is a deer gate / stile at the foot of the track. Reaching the summit is not that easy due to gorse bushes. The obvious track (not the one shown on OS maps) takes you tantalising close to the summit but the wrong side of thick gorse. If you follow the track route shown on the OS map (ignoring a red arrow waymarker post) you will again reach the summit area this time on the other side of the gorse. Although the actual summit is inaccessible it is possible to reach the site of the ancient cairn.
Return back to the deer gate or alternatively follow the red waymarker for some rough walking that brings you out on to the coastal path track.
Coultra Hill (178m)
This hill lies to the east of Green Hill and is a slightly longer detour from the coastal path. Access is straightforward via forest tracks either from the south (shown on the OS map) or from the east (not on the map). The actual summit is set back from the track in amongst the trees. There is a network of paths in the forest which can be explored.
Black Craig (203m) and Green Craig (189m)
Black Craig is very easy to access directly from the Fife Coastal Path via a track up its east side (with a wooden barrier gate) at NO 334 217. Leave the track to head west along the ridge line of the hill to reach the summit area on rough paths. The easiest descent is to return by the outward route but if you don’t mind a bit of fence / gate climbing you can continue westwards.
The track becomes a rougher path overgrown in places with wood rush and will take you down the west side of the hill to an unlocked gate. From this point if you want to head back to the road you can follow the arrow, left, down the hillside to the cottages. The gate at the back of the cottages is a bit awkward to climb and not easily opened either. A better option might be to keep right when going downhill and aim for the back of the church and a locked gate on to the road on its west side.
It’s possible to continue the hill route onto Green Craig hill fort (189m) by following the field edges to reach a gate on its eastern side. This route entails a fair bit of squeezing through fences with electrified strands. A rough track leads up the side of Green Craig from the gate although you will need to leave it to reach the summit area. The descent from Green Craig can be made due south on tracks / rough paths with a bit of thrashing through gorse bushes to reach the corner of a field from where it is a straightforward walk back to the road (barring a locked gate at the end of the track).
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