East Lomond

Also known as Falkland Hill, the 424m East Lomond is a popular outing and is easily “summited” from the high car park on its eastern side. Other well used routes are from Craigmead to the west and Falkland to the north. The southern approaches from Glenrothes and Holl tend to be a bit quieter.

Although an easy proposition on good days, you should be confident of your route finding abilities if tackling the hill when the cloud is down. It would be easy to walk off the hill in the wrong direction. You should also expect it to be cooler and windier on the summit than at low levels.

Multiple routes are described below. Please note that distances and ascents are given for the outward route only.

From East Lomond Car Park

Start: Car park at grid reference NO 252 058 accessed off the A912 Glenrothes to Falkland road

Distance: 0.8km / 0.5 miles

Ascent: 100m / 330 m (negligible if using for return route)

Terrain: grass

Facilities: Free car park with toilets and picnic tables

This is the easiest, shortest and quickest route to the summit as it benefits from a high starting point.

The route from the car park is obvious, just follow the grass path up to the summit. A track also leads around the southern side of the hill to the area of the lime kiln so you have the option to descend to the west and follow the track round the hill back to the car park making a circular route.

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From Craigmead

Start: Craigmead Car park at grid reference NO 227 061 on the Leslie to Falkland road

Distance: 2.2 km / 1.4 miles

Ascent: 180m / 260 feet (negligible if using for return route)

Terrain: Track followed by steep ascent on eroded hillside

Facilities: Free car park with toilets and picnic tables

This is a very popular starting point for both East and West Lomond and can be a very busy spot in the summer months.

From the car park cross over the public road and follow the track east for 1 km to reach the foot of the steep slope. From here you have the option of a short detour to the well preserved lime kiln before ascending the very eroded and steep path to the summit of the hill. Tip: if using this as a descent route it is easier to head for the trig point (not at the summit) and descend from there, keeping well left of the worst of the erosion.

If you go up by this route you may wish to descend the eastern side to the high car park and follow the track around the southern flank of the hill back to the lime kiln.

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From Falkland

Direct

Start: Well Brae, Falkland

Distance: 1.4 km / 0.9 miles

Ascent: 350 m / 1150 feet (negligible if using for return route)

Terrain: Stepped path and grassy steep hill path

Facilities: Free car park with toilets at Back Wynd, KY15 7BX. Refreshments in Falkland

The path to East Lomond starts from Well Brae at the top of the town next to the demolished factory building. Initially the route is on steps up through woodland. A gate takes you out on to the open hill side where an obvious grass path continues steeply upwards to reach a further gate and finally the summit viewpoint.

To make a circular route, you could return via Craigmead and the Maspie Den. To avoid a road walk from the Stables back to Falkland, cross over the river (bridge) and follow the path on its northern side to reach a play area and the outskirts of Falkland.

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Maspie Den and Craigmead

Start: The Stables, Falkland Estate, KY15 7AF

Distance: 2.6 km / 1.6 miles

Ascent: 220 m / 720 feet (negligible if using for return route)

Terrain: Muddy paths, surfaced path, track and eroded hillside

Facilities: Car park (donations requested), refreshments at the Stables, toilets at Craigmead

Start from the Stables car park (or walk out from Falkland using the path to the north of the burn).

There are at least two routes across the Falkland Estate into the Maspie Den (the Falkland Estate map may be helpful). One heads past the pond and small chapel opposite the car park, the second starts near Falkland House further along the road. Both routes are very attractive and the second route includes a short stretch of tunnel (avoidable). The Maspie Den is a delightful walk through woodland alongside a cascading burn. A number of paths exist, for the most aesthetically pleasing experience stick close to the burn. The path can be very slippy after rain and heavy use is making it rather eroded in places so care is needed. For many, the highlight of the Den is the Yad Waterfall which you can walk behind. From the waterfall there are paths on both sides of the burn that will take you uphill to the Craigmead Car Park. From here follow the directions given above.

For your return you could make a full circuit using the Falkland direct route described above or, if you return via the Maspie Den, use some of the other paths in the Den for some variety.

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From Pitcairn Cente, Glenrothes

Two (plus variations) approaches are possible from the Pitcairn Centre car park at the end of Moidart Drive, Glenrothes (alternatively Formonthills car park or the Coul Den car park could be your start point).

Via Rhind Hill

Start: Pitcairn Centre, Moidart Drive, Glenrothes, KY7 6ET

Distance: 4.6 km / 2.8 miles

Ascent: 300 m / 985 feet (negligible if using for return route)

Terrain: Unsurfaced paths (may be muddy) and some rough ground

Facilities: Free parking, toilets available at the high car park

From Pitcairn you need to head through the Formonthills Woodland for the totem pole and Rhind Hill. There are numerous paths that enable you to do this and the route map / gpx track given is just one possibility. The Woodland Trust map may be helpful when choosing a route.

Leave the Rhind Hill trig point in a generally north west direction. Keeping the trees to your left, follow a rough path to the corner of the field. Go through a gap in the trees on a path, still in a northwards direction, until you reach a field gate on your left. Go through the gate and cross the field to reach another gate which brings you out on to a surfaced farm road.Turn right on to the road and follow it northwards to a corner where it turns right. At this corner, go through the gate on your left to use a track around a field edge with trees to your right. When you reach the field corner go right into the trees on an obvious track, turn left and walk through a rather dark section of forest. Keep following this track uphill as it leaves the trees and then follows the edge of a forestry plantation. Other farm tracks will appear on your left but stick to the track that you are on.

When you reach the end of the forest on your right you have two options. You could continue walking in the same northerly direction following the wall on your right for 450m over rough ground to reach a broken gate in the corner of the field. Alternatively stay on the track for a while longer and then strike off right across rough ground at a suitable point to again reach the same corner with the broken gate. A line of electricity poles provides a useful guide if taking the latter option.

The broken gate leads out on to the track skirting the southern side of the hill. From here you can go left and up from the lime kiln or right and up from the car park.

To make a circular route you could return via the East Lomond Path route.

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Via East Lomond path

Start: Pitcairn Centre, Moidart Drive, Glenrothes, KY7 6ET

Distance: 4.3 km / 1.8 miles

Ascent: 300 m / 985 feet (negligible if using for return route)

Terrain: Unsurfaced paths (may be muddy)

Facilities: Free parking, toilets available at the high car park

A better known route from Pitcairn is via the signed path.

There is a direct path from the car park to a small footbridge over the Conland Burn or you could take a more circuitous route via Coul Den Reservoir. The Woodland Trust map may be helpful. Once across the footbridge follow the signed path uphill alongside trees and across fields. When you enter a forest plantation the path splits at a marker post and you can then go either way through the forest.

Both routes take you through the forest and across heather and grassland to reach the high car park on the east side of the hill. If using the left hand route you will need to make a left turn at one point. If using the right hand route you need to make a right and a left turn.

From the high car park head directly up the hill or walk round to the west side and ascend from there.

To make a circular route you could return via the Rhind Hill route.

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From Holl Reservoir

Start: Holl Reservoir Car park grid reference NO 223 034, accessed from A911 Auchmuir Bridge to Leslie Road

Distance: 5 km / 3.1 miles

Ascent: 300 m / 985 feet (70 m / 230 feet if using for return route)

Terrain: Paths (may be unsurfaced) and tracks

Facilities: Free parking

From the car park, head south back down the road to the crossroads and turn left towards the dam. Follow the road along the dam and past the Scottish Water premises. Then follow the track upwards through the woods. Once out of the wood the next landmark is Balgothrie Farm. Follow the path round the left side of the farm keeping the reservoir to your left. 

Just before reaching a fishing hut, the path turns right and heads upwards across grassy fields to join the public road. Turn right and walk down the road passing Wester Glasslie Farm on your right. Look for a stile on your left on the corner. Cross the stile and head across the field aiming for the marker post on the hillock. The path becomes more obvious after this. You will need to leave the path when you see the lime kiln to your left and aim for the gate/stile to the left of the lime kiln at the foot of East Lomond. From here ascend either up the eroded west side or walk round to the high car park on the east and ascend from there.

To vary your return to Holl, you could head to Craigmead, go left down the road turning right on the farm track to Little Ballo. Follow the track to its end where you can cross the Harperleas Dam and then follow track / private road back to the car park.

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Routes to East Lomond

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