This is a woodland and field walk in the north east of Fife to reach the 221m summit of Mount Hill topped with the conspicuous Hopetoun Monument.
Two route options are provided. The shorter option unfortunately has very limited parking options. There is space for 1 car at the foot of the track up the hill where it leaves the public road (NO 339 159). Other than that it may be possible to park on the verge but bear in mind that the road is used by wide farm vehicles.
Distance: 11km / 7 miles
Ascent: 240 m / 780 feet
Distance: (shorter option): 6 km / 3.5 miles
Ascent: (shorter options): 200 m / 650 feet
Terrain: Gravel and dirt tracks and some tarmac road walking on quiet roads
Start / finish: Scottish Deer Centre near Cupar. Shorter option starts from minor road at grid reference NO 339 159 near The Mount.
Facilities: For the longer route there is a cafe and parking at the Scottish Deer Centre (it’s a private car park so would be wise to ask if you want to park a number of vehicles).
The longer route starts from the A91 directly opposite the Scottish Deer Centre. Take care crossing over the main road as it is fast and busy. The initial stages of the walk are on the metalled access road leading through Over Rankeilour. On reaching the buildings, keep right at the junction so that you pass round the back of the main building. Keep on this track for 1.4km, passing through woodland and then fields to reach the farm of Westhall. Please note that this is a busy working farm so keep alert for the movement of vehicles and keep dogs on a lead.
Turn right on to the public road and follow it to reach the junction at Easter Fernie. Go left at the junction and follow the quiet road for 1.3km passing East Hall. 700m beyond East Hall there is a green Scotways signpost pointing left across the fields.
This is the start point for the shorter route.
Follow the Scotways sign post on a track, initially over fields and then into woodlands. All junctions are conveniently signposted so just keep on progressing up the hill following the signs.
On reaching the summit area you need to pass through an unsigned deer gate to reach the actual summit with its monument and trig point.
Return back to the deer gate and this time turn left rather than going back the way you came. The track continues around the south side of the hill losing height to rejoin the outward route at one of the signposted junctions. Keep right at this junction and right again at the next junction so that you are returning via your outward route. However, at the next junction (a T junction), turn to the right on a forest track away from your outward route. Very soon you reach another wide junction where you need to turn left.
The track now descends the hill through woodland to reach yet another track junction. Our route goes right here but if you went left it would take you back to the road and provides a short cut for the shorter route. There is now a wee bit of ascent before the track turns left and winds its way steeply down the hillside to exit the woods. Continue on the track which will bring you out to the road close to Westhall Farm.
Turn left and proceed along the road to reach the junction at Easter Fernie where you go left. Keep on the road up the hill for about 1.3km passing East Hall until you reach your start point.
Turn right and proceed along the road for 600m ignoring your outward route via Westhall. After passing a wind turbine you reach a track on your left with a barrier gate (nb: not the track to the wind turbine). Take this track across farmland, past a pond and into the woodland at Over Rankeilour. Follow the road back out to the A91.
View /download this route from Ordnance Survey
View / download this route from Viewranger
View / download shorter route from Ordnance Survey
View / download shorter route from Viewranger
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