Sidlaw Hills, Angus & Dundee
Starts at Balkello Community Woodland Car Park GR NO365385
2 hours 30 minutes | 5.3miles 8.5km | Moderate
ID: 0.10525 | Developed by: Keith Fergus |
Auchterhouse Hill and Craigowl Hill are the two highpoints of this picturesque hill walk that also includes Balkello Hill. All three summits grant fantastic, far-reaching views. The paths are clear throughout.
Main Route
Alternative Route
Point of Interest
*move mouse over graph to see points on route
Starts at

Balkello Community Woodland Car Park GR NO365385

Ends at

Balkello Community Woodland Car Park GR NO365385

Getting there

Xplore Dundee Bus Service 138 from Dundee City Centre to Balkello Community Woodland

Route instructions

[1] Begin from Balkello Community Woodland car park, which lies around 1.25 miles (2km) east of Kirkton of Auchterhouse. The woodland is home to approximately 150,000 native trees, 130 kinds of flowering plant and over 100 types of beetle. From the car park’s L corner go through a gate and follow a broad, gravel path north into Balkello Woodland. At a fork keep L onto a muddier path and ascend gradually through the woodland. Beyond a gap in a wall immediately turn R onto a grassy path. When it splits keep R, exit the woodland and climb steadily to a junction.

[2] Turn L and continue west along a path, on a gentle rise, traversing the lower slopes of Balkello Hill. At the next fork walk R where another path runs to a saddle inbetween Auchterhouse and Balkello Hill, culminating at two gates. Take the gate on the L and follow a path through heather to the L of a fence. Upon reaching a junction, turn sharp R and follow another path as it ascends gradually northwest towards Auchterhouse Hill. Go L at the next fork from where one final, steepish pull gains the summit of Auchterhouse Hill. The Angus Munros, the Sidlaw Hills and a good portion of the Tay Estuary are all visible.

[3] Retrace steps back to the saddle beneath Balkello Hill, go through the gate, cross the outward-bound track then take the R branch of a fork. Follow a stony path, on a steady gradient, until the 397m summit of Balkello Hill is attained. It bestows another magnificent viewpoint, taking in Dundee to the south.

[4] Walk past a cairn to a crossroads. Go straight on from where a path travels east northeast across heathery moorland, soon descending steeply down through a gate to a fork. Go L onto a prolonged steep then steady incline. At a radio mast cross a stile and follow the path a short distance to reach the rounded summit of Craigowl Hill. The views are tremendous with the long finger of the River Tay entering the North Sea, near Tentsmuir Point and Buddon Ness, particularly alluring.

[5] From the summit of Craigowl Hill retrace steps over Balkello Hill and descend back to the saddle between it and Auchterhouse Hill. Turn L onto the outward-bound path and descend back down through Balkello Woodland to the car park.

Developed by: Keith Fergus
The Sidlaws from Auchterhouse HillThe Sidlaws from Auchterhouse Hill
Photo taken by: Keith Fergus