Walk: The Two Towers (Clackmannanshire)
Not quite Lord of the Rings-standard scenery despite the name, but this walk sums up Clackmannanshire in a nutshell. Clackmannan, the forgotten old county town, complete with Tolbooth, Mercat Cross and the Clach Mannan - a boulder named after the Celtic God Manau. Alloa, the sprawling new capital, with excessive numbers of supermarkets and declining industry, is the complete opposite. Both are home to impressive tower houses however, probably dating back to the 1300's. Hilly farmland provides the outward route to Alloa, with flat wetland and fields for the return - a surprisingly varied walk.
|[Clackmannan Tower seen from the return route]|
Name: Walk: The Two Towers (Clackmannanshire) ★★★☆☆
Length: 6 km / 4 miles
Ascent: 80 metres
Points of interest: Clackmannan Tolbooth, Clach & Mercat Cross; Clackmannan Tower; Alloa Tower
Start / finish: Street parking, Clackmannan Tolbooth, G.R.: NS 911919 / belonging indoors presuming
Route: Start - Clackmannan Tower - west, north then east to Back Wood - Alloa Tower via Black Devon burn and Comely Bank - Clackmannan via Black Devon wetland
Terrain: Faint grass and dirt paths to Alloa, cycle paths and pavements in Alloa, then tracks to return to start.
Wildlife today: Sheep and cows.
Weather today: Plenty of sunny intervals, temperatures in the high teens.
Name: Alloa Tower ★★★☆☆
Description: Ancestral home of the Erskine family, dating to about 1368.
Location: Alloa Park, 5-min walk south-east of Alloa centre, G.R.: NS 889925 / clumped richly tactical
Open (2017): Afternoons only. Thursday to Monday, May to August; Friday to Monday, March to April & September to October.
Cost (2017): £6.50 (adults), £5 (children), free for National Trust for Scotland members
Name: Clackmannan Tower ★☆☆☆
Description: Attractive tower house once occupied by descendants of Robert the Bruce, with an excellent hilltop location.
Location: King's Seat Hill, 5-min walk west of Clackmannan centre, G.R.: NS 907920 / sleeper grant scarecrow
Open (2017): Always (exterior only)
Route credit: Walkhighlands (modified)