10 years ago this month, I parked my car at the bottom of Dollar Glen and set off up into The Ochils. Fresh from shopping in Tiso's the day before, I was all shiny leather boots, baggy TNF pants and a "Wild Rover" ruckie, packed with fleeces, waterproofs, a big flask and assorted paraphenalia that the magazines told me were "Essentials that must be carried at all times" or somesuch. The day was hot and humid. So muggy, in fact, that even the midgies stayed home lest their hair go all curly and daft-looking. Needless to say, I didn't get far. My target of Kingseat may as well have been on the dark side of the moon. I flopped down, completely burst, on some wee bump.
I could've thought "F**k this for a laugh" and gone home but, as the Lucozade Sport and flapjack worked their magic, I realised that I was actually having fun. Looking down on Dollar from way up on high, I actually remembered why I loved being in the hills. I dawndered back down to the car and that was it; I was hooked again.
I was out on the hills nearly every weekend after that and, 6 months later, returned to Kingseat. This time, I only stopped on the way up to admire the views. In just over an hour, blazing past all and sundry (including the man who did the "Walk of the week" for The Scotsman) I reached the shelter cairn and sat there for ages. The day was bright and clear, the temperature barely above freezing. Even the banter was good that day.
I left the top via a steep, and slightly reckless, direct descent down to The Burn of Sorrow. The glen was quiet, everything rimed with frost and not another soul in sight. A great walk out by any standard.
Back to the present and Wednesday saw me with a free day and a need to stretch my legs. Wanting to stay local, I headed along the A91 and swung a right at Dollar. 15 minutes later, I was walking up the road to Castle Campbell and, not long after that, I was heading up Kingseat.
It's no' a terribly big hill but it's broad as well as high which means there's a bit of walking across as well as up. It's also lumpy so there's 4 or 5 false summits to mess with the mind.
It's well worth the effort tho', the shelter cairn giving extensive views in every direction. It's a great place to linger.
There was a wee bit of banter with a couple of auld boys, the only folk I saw, and then, 45 minutes later, I levered myself up and away. I actually found myself jogging back to the car, such was the spring in my step. Great stuff.