Hills: Lucklaw Hill (190m), Forret Hill (173m), Airdit Hill (162m), Craigsanquhar (159m)
Lucklaw Hill is a prominent landmark in the far north east of Fife. Although only 190m in height it does have the distinction of being a HuMP (a hill with a 100m prominence/drop). Its southern slope has been quarried away and this gives the hill is distinctive red appearance when viewed from the south.
A number of approach routes to the hill are possible and are described here. You can mix and match them to create your own circular walk. Balmullo is the obvious starting point for the routes. A circular walk including Lucklaw Hill and the outlier hills is also described.
Start / finish: Balmullo – parking available on street or at the Burnside Hall.
Facilities: Balmullo Inn or Tai Teak for refreshments. Dundee bus service serves the village.
From the South
The hill can be approached via a signposted path from the south west starting at NO 409 209 near the settlement of Logie. This route is grassy for the most part following a fence line across fields up to a gate. Beyond the gate an obvious path crosses scrubland to the summit with its communications mast, trig point and cairn of bricks.
A similar approach starts further along the road at NO 412 210 where there is a signpost for a woodland walk. A pleasant stroll through the woods brings you to a gate into a field where you join the route above up to the gate and scrub land.
Also from the south, is a route nearer to Balmullo starting from the quarry road at NO 423 213. This is probably the quickest route up the hill. Again the initial part of the route is on a grassy track across a field before entering the scrubland above the quarry to follow the rim around to the western side to meet with the path from the south west.
From Balmullo the south west approach paths can be reached via a walk through Willie’s Wood. The parking area at Cuplahills provides an alternative start point. The southern approaches to the hill are shown in red on the route map.
From the North
A very pleasant ascent or descent is via the woodland to the north of the hill. There is access into the woods from the end of the road in Lucklawhill at NO 419 221. When entering the woods at this point go left so that you are walking approximately south towards the hill.
Alternatively for a longer route you can approach from South Straiton via a track followed by field edge core path to NO 413 219 where there is access to the woods. Head east through the woods turning right (south) on to a woodland path when you approach the first house at Lucklawhill.
The woodland path heads south west towards the hill reaching an old gate / wall after about 500m. From this point there is a direct path up the scrubland to the summit. For a slightly longer route follow the old fence east through more woodland before turning south west at a field corner on a path for the summit.
The northern route is shown in blue on the route map.
Lucklaw Hill Circular Walk
Distance: 7.2 km / 4.5 miles
Ascent: 200 m / 650 feet
Terrain: Paths and tracks plus quiet road.
For a short circular walk, a good option is to start at the Burnside Hall and walk out to Cuplahills turning into Willies Wood when the farm is reached. On exiting the woods, the cottages can be bypassed by keeping left and then turning right back on to the road. Use one of the south west approaches up the hill, the one starting at the second woodland walk signpost is recommended. Descend to the north through the old birchwood, turning right into mixed woodland. Exit the woods and turn right onto the road to walk back to Balmullo. The route could be extended by walking up to South Straiton before returning to Balmullo.
Four Hills Circuit
This circular walk includes the four wee hills of Airdit Hill, Craigsanquhar Hill, Forret Hill and Lucklaw Hill. Variations on the described route are possible. This walk takes place in farming countryside and as well as recognised path/tracks also includes some field edges. It is probably best not to take dogs on this walk as there is a possibility of encountering livestock. Always stick to the edges when crossing cultivated fields. A number of gates need to be climbed as they are not openable. When doing so, climb them at their hinged end as this is less likely to cause damage.
Distance: 12.2 km / 7.6 miles
Ascent: 380 m / 1250 feet
Terrain: Mixed: mostly paths/tracks (can be very muddy), some quiet road, some woodland walking, some field edge walking.
From Balmullo walk out to Cuplahills with the option to approach through Willies Wood. Follow the track from the farm to a crossroads and turn left towards Airdit. Airdit Hill should be accessed through the woodland to your right without going near the house. If you do reach the house please turn back to find the route through the woods, don’t try to cut through the grounds of the house. Please respect the householder’s privacy. There are a number of paths through the woods with the main one passing close to the summit of the hill.
Descend west out to open fields and follow a wall down to the road. Climb the gate out on to the road and turn left for 270m. At the corner go right on a farm track. After it bears left a detour to Craigsanquhar Hill in the field to the right can be made. Beyond here the track becomes rather muddy. Leave the track on an overgrown path to the right which also becomes quite muddy as it circles the base of Forret Hill. Use the track to gain height. Once up the walking is less muddy and the summit can be reached through a gate to your left.
Descend north east to a gate and cross the next field to reach a further gate on it north side. From here use a grassy track to descend the northern side of the hill to a pedestrian gate close to Easter Forret. Turn right and after approximately 30 minutes reach the settlement of Logie. Turn left on the road at Logie to reach a crossroads. Head up Lucklaw Hill from here or if you prefer, omit it by walking directly back to Balmullo.