A small (190m) easily ascended hill in north east Fife with 360 degree panoramic views.
Distance: 10 km / 6 miles
Ascent: 240 m / 780 feet
Terrain: paths / tracks / quiet road at finish
Start / finish: Balmullo
Facilities: parking at Burnside Hall, Balmullo ( KY16 0AW), bus service to Balmullo, refreshments at Balmullo Inn or Tai Teak.
From the Burnside Hall in Balmullo, head across the grass into the far corner to join a red ash path. The path initially follows the back of houses before reaching the open fields.
When you reach the first field boundary turn left on to a trodden grass path for 350m until you reach a farm track where you turn right. Keep to this track passing some holiday cabins and reaching a farm.
At the farm, go right, through a gate into woodland (Willie’s Wood). A grassy path takes you uphill to a viewpoint with picnic tables. From here there are good views out over St Andrews Bay and Leuchars. Interestingly there are a number of memorial plaques in the area.
After the picnic tables the path continues though the woodland culminating in a “tree tunnel” prior to exiting the woods.
Either go right and walk past the cottages or bypass them by turning left on the track followed by a right at a rough car parking area. When you reach the tarmac road follow the cylce sign to the right.
Keep to the road ignoring the signpost for a woodland walk. Pass the cottages and enjoy open views across to St Andrews. Approximately 150m beyond the cottages is a second signpost for a woodland walk.
Turn left at this signpost into Lucklaw Woods, another very pleasant woodland. There is a path through the woods and you will soon reach an obvious Y junction. Keep left at this junction (although you could take the right hand option if you prefer).
Keep right when you reach a T junction close to the edge of the woods and then keep right at the next junction (this is where the alternative route at the Y-junction rejoins our route).
At the edge of the woods, go right through a wooden gate into a field (not the gate in front of you) noting a sign re a bull.
Follow the field fenceline up the hill until you reach yet another gate. Once through the gate, the path/track on the other side takes you up through rough scrub land to the summit area with a cairn made from a pile of bricks, trig point and communications mast. Due to the low lieing nature of the surrounding area, the views from here are particularly good.
There are a choice of options for the return but a particularly nice path is the one to the east (turning to north east) through heather. Follow it down the hill to reach woodland. At a corner where you meet a bit of old wall, turn left onto a trodden path into woodland.
This next section through old birchwood is probably the nicest part of the walk. A woodland path (a bit feint in places) roughly parallels an old fence to reach an obvious junction 300m in to the woods. Turn right (away from the fence with an old gate) following a woodland path through mixed woodland.
After about 500m of delightful woodland walking, the path emerges at the end of a road. At this point, a short cut option can be taken by turning right along the road past houses to return to Balmullo via Lucklaw (this shortens the walk to about 4.5 miles).
However, it is worth extending the walk by taking the track to your left through more woodland (not quite as attractive as the previous path though). Follow this track for about 650m until it terminates at a wooden gate.
Go through the gate into the field, and turn right following the field edge for 400m to reach a further gate. After this the route follows a rough track to South Straiton. Once you reach the farm the surface improves and soon becomes a tarmac road. The road is followed around the eastern side of Lucklaw Hill back to the village of Balmullo.
View / download this route from Viewranger.
View / download this route from Ordnance Survey.
© 2020 Fife Walking. All rights reserved. If using this route for a group or organised walk, or as the basis for publishing a route elsewhere please credit Fife Walking as being your source of information.