Broughton Heights and Trahenna Hill, Scottish Borders
Starts at Main Street, Broughton (NT113367)
5 hours 0 minutes | 8.7miles 14.0km | Moderate
ID: 0.9992 | Developed by: Keith Fergus |
An exhilarating hill walk, which takes in a stretch of the excellent John Buchan Way, named after the famous author of The Thirty-Nine Steps, and crosses the rolling hills of Green Law, Broughton Heights, Hammer Head and Trahenna.
Main Route
Alternative Route
Point of Interest
*move mouse over graph to see points on route
Starts at

Main Street, Broughton (NT113367)

Ends at

Main Street, Broughton (NT113367)

Getting there

Borders Buses service X62 from Edinburgh or Melrose to Peebles. Barc Coach Hire bus service 91 from Peebles to Broughton. There's a small car park at Shepherds Cottage after Broughton Place Farm.

Route instructions

[1] Walk north out of Broughton, along Main Street (A701), for 200m. Turn R onto a single-track road, signposted ‘Stobo’. This climbs past Broughton Place Farm. Continue into open countryside then, beyond a small car park and Shepherds Cottage, go through a gate onto the waymarked John Buchan Way. A grassy track rises steadily then descends over Hollows Burn via a wooden footbridge.

[2] A good path now ascends steadily north, beneath the slopes of Clover Law. At a fork, beside a John Buchan Way marker post, keep L and continue to another marker post. Go R then L, leaving the John Buchan Way behind, and climb the steep slopes of Broomy Side. Further up a path is gained, which is followed to a fence. Turn L and continue to another fence. Once across, turn R onto an obvious track and climb north over Broomy Side then Green Law. Here there are fine views of Broughton Heights.

[3] Follow the track north-west, leading to one final climb north onto Broughton Heights, the highest point of the walk at 571m. It grants a wonderful panorama to Broad Law and Tinto Hill. Retrace steps back to the junction of fences beneath Broomy Side. Once over, descend steeply south down a narrow path back to the John Buchan Way.

[4] Turn L through a gate and follow the path past two marker posts. When the path splits, bear R past a third marker post. A sharp R turn from the John Buchan Way leads onto an indistinct path, which climbs to a broader grassy track. Follow this east along the lower slopes of Hammer Head to another track. After this, turn R onto a path, then later a broader track, which soon reaches a fence. Cross this to reach Hammer Head’s summit.

[5] Re-cross the fence then turn R onto a track. Follow this south, then south-west along a wonderful high-level walk. The track eventually bears L away from the fence and climbs steadily south-east to a gate. Once through, continue on to Trahenna Hill, where great views along the River Tweed await.

[6] Descend back through the gate beneath the summit. Climb in between a wall and fence through another gate. Go L onto a track and drop steadily south-west to a flatter plateau. Go R onto an indistinct path and descend, the path broadening as it crosses grassy slopes back to the John Buchan Way. Turn L and retrace steps back to Broughton.


This route was first published in the autumn 2017 issue of walk magazine

Developed by: Keith Fergus
Broughton Heights from Green LawBroughton Heights from Green Law
Photo taken by: Keith Fergus