Despite storms and gales in the south of England, October 29 dawned clear and calm in the Mearns and a good turn-out of walkers appeared.
The walk was in the Hillside area, near Montrose.
Starting point was the car-park (1) beside the church in Dubton Road, Hillside, from where we headed to Main Road and thence to Rosemount Road, sign-posted as a dead-end.
Part way up this road and on the right is a notice (2) dedicated to the Burns enthusiasts who created a plaque to commemorate the occasion when Burns stopped to water his horse at Hillside on his way to Montrose as part of his Highland tour of 1787. It’s an interesting story too long to detail here.
Continuing on, the tarred road becomes a track, and soon a gate across the way indicates the end of the road for vehicular traffic; pedestrians, however, can pass either side of this gate.
The long straight track comes to an end at the Hillside – Craigo road. Here we turned left and walked a short distance to the road sign-posted Logie. This road took us over the railway line to the hamlet of Logie where we turned left to view the old Logie School (3) which is now a National Trust property but is privately occupied.
Built around 1835, of clay and straw, the building ceased being a school before 1929 when it was taken over by the United Free Church. It finally closed in 1990 and was saved from demolition because it is one of the few “clay–biggins” to remain unaltered.
While there are many clay houses locally, most have been altered or extended in some way.
Retracing our steps back through Logie, we continued straight on until we came to the road to Logie Farm, and here we took a second diversion: through the farm to a patch of grass designated “Fisherman’s Car Park”, and here we used a side-gate to access a rough track through a field of cattle.
A short walk downhill – avoiding fresh cow-pats almost impossible – and we arrived at the old Logie Church (4) which is now roofless.
Church and graveyard are surrounded by a round wall – no corners in which the devil may hide! Although there was a gate, it was locked and access was over the wall by means of a series of stone steps projecting from the wall.
Back through the farm, we continued straight on at the road-end. This led us back over the Hillside – Craigo road and on past the old hospital buildings on our left.
A right turn on to a narrow path led us past a large house with tree- felling and a high fence; then left over a corner of the park, across Main Road again and we set off down Lamondfauld Road.
At the foot, on Dubton Road, we turned left along a track parallel to the road, and back to the car-park.
All in all, a pleasant walk and not too long – about six miles in all.
The next walk will be on Tuesday, November 12, to St Cyrus, where we will start from the Nature Reserve.
As usual, the minibus will leave the Burgh Buildings car-park in Laurencekirk at 10am.