|Ben Cleuch from
|Estimated net time||2½-3 hours|
|Drinking water||Plenty of sources for drinking water until you start on the south ridge.|
|GSM coverage||Coverage throughout the route except during the last section to the summit (November 2009).|
|Parking||Room for 4-5 cars at the car park at trail head.|
|Start height||48 metres|
|Vertical metres||760 metres for the roundtrip.|
|Trip distance||8.0 km|
Start of route to Ben Cleuch at Tillicoultry.|
Route along south ridge to Ben Cleuch.
Final bridge and start of ridge to Ben Cleuch.
From Edinburg drive west and north on road A90, crossing the Forth Road Bridge. North of the bridge turn west onto road A985 and drive towards Kincardine Bridge. Just before the bridge turn right and head towards Alloa on road A977, and then turn left (west) when you meet road A907. Follow A907 to Alloa and turn right (north) onto road A908 just before Alloa. Continue on A908 until you hit A91. Turn left here and drive into the village of Tillicoultry. Approximately 600 metres from the A908/A91 junction turn right onto the street called "Upper Mill Street". Drive 500 metres up this street to a "T"-junction, and park on the small car park to the right of the small park ahead of you.
Start walking by climbing the few concrete steps, and then across the small park. You are now on the path that runs along the river towards the south ridge of Ben Cleuch. In total you will be passing three gates and nine small bridges (six of them crossing the main river). When you get towards the final bridge you need to descend down towards where the river forks. Cross the wooden bridge that crosses the right leg of the river and start your ascent of the south ridge. Follow this path all the way to the summit, which is marked by a concrete cairn, and a stone cairn with a metal plate showing directions to other mountains.
The descent can be done by reversing the ascent route.
02. November 2009
This Monday was my last day of hiking before my colleagues arrived and I was due back at work. Unfortunately the weather was as bad as the previous two days, so again I decided to settle for something not very high. Since I was staying at a hotel in Dunfermline I decided to visit Ben Cleuch, one of my "backup" mountains, and a relatively prominent mountain, being the highest of the Ochil Hills.
At the beginning of the hike it wasn't raining, but the wind got strong as soon as I got onto the south ridge, and from something like 500 metres the visibility was close to zero. Hence it was no point stopping to take photos or enjoy the view, so focused on doing a steady pace all the way to the summit, including some easy running. After a short summit stop I headed back down to the car.