Date/TimeDate(s) - 11/10/2009
Walk DetailsPub Stop?: No O/S Map Sheet No.: 28 Grid Ref. Start: Grid Ref. Finish Walk (Miles): 11 Walk Hours: Bus Time to Walk: Bus Time from Walk: Departure time from walk:
Ben Rinnes is the second highest hill in the old county of Banffshire and commands a glorious view over the Laich of Moray and also across the Moray Firth to the hills of Sutherland and Caithness.
The walk commences on a secondary road near the scattered hamlet of Milton of Edinvillie at NGR.261.399. Take the road which heads south-westwards from here and passes the Allt a’Bhainne Distillery to pass under a high voltage power line before beginning a gradual climb up the broad ridge ahead known as Baby’s Hill. After about a mile an outcrop of rocks is reached above the headwaters of some tributaries of the Aberlour burn. Here the ridge turns south-eastwards and climbs to the unnamed 738 metre top (2420ft) on the summit plateau. To the left will be seen the rocky Scurran of Well, one of the three tors on the hill. It may be worth a detour to inspect more closely this fascinating rock formation. However continue climbing south-eastwards across the peat and gravel to meet a bulldozed track coming up from Glen Rinnes between the other two tors – to the west the Scurran of Morinsh, and ahead the highest point the Scurran of Lochterlandoch. The track turns south-eastwards towards this latter top before petering out just below the summit rocks and trig. point (840m., 2755ft.).
From the summit descend steeply eastwards down the ridge to pick up a track which heads down the Black Banks and then climbs slightly again over Roy’s Hill (534m.,1754ft) and the Round Hill (411m.,1348ft.). It then winds down to join the secondary road coming up through the Glack Harnes, the narrow pass between Ben Rinnes and Meikle Conval Hill at a small car park.
From here there are three options:- (1) either take the road down to the right to join the B9009 Glen Rinnes road and follow it northeastwards for just over two miles to reach the car park at Dufftown Golf Club where the bus will be parked (NGR.311.391)
or (2) Turn left on the secondary road for about a mile to the lonely house of Braeside and pick up the highest forestry track behind the house which contours, in the trees, the west flanks of Meikle Conval Hill to reach the dip in the ridge of the Conval Hills – the Glach-en-ronach – where a high voltage power line crosses. Hereabouts, a path is picked up which heads northeastwards through the dip and descends to join the B9009 road a few hundred yards south of the Golf Club car park.
or again (3) for those wishing a slightly more challenging route from the Glack Harnes car park it is possible to climb up the opposite hillside and follow the ridge over Meikle Conval Hill (569m.,1866ft.) to then drop down into the Glach-en-ronach and follow route (2) down under the power line as above to reach the car park.