Walk: Dalmahoy Hill - it's the pits!

City of Edinburgh | Kirknewton | Short walk | ★★

[Dalmahoy Hill from Kaimes Hill]

If there's a less loved pair of summits in Scotland, we're yet to come across them. These steep-sided, volcanic sills are surrounded by undesirable neighbours - quarries, a waste transfer station, railway line and airfield - and the beginning of this route is uncomfortably close to Ravelrig Tarmac Quarry's entrance. Nevertheless, Dalmahoy Hill sports a trig pillar and wonderful views of the capital and Pentland Hills beyond the noisy pit, while Kaimes Hill boasts an extensive western panorama. The latter summit is a rather dramatic sliver of its former self, its southern slopes having been gouged by quarrying before being re-purposed as a landfill site and finally covered over with suspiciously immaculate grass: an odd place to walk. A high bealach makes combining the two hills straightforward, and the unusual surroundings mean you're fairly likely to get them all to yourself.

[View east from Dalmahoy Hill, with Ravelrig Quarry prominent]

Location & info

📌 Walk: Dalmahoy Hill - it's the pits! ★★
Start / finish at minor road junction, entrance to Ravelrig Quarry, 2 mi east of Kirknewton, G.R.: NT 133674 ///helper.aimless.fruitcake
🚌 Bus to Kirknewton / Burnwynd (A71) (both 1 mi) | 🚗 Limited space on verge (many lorries pass by - don't impede access). Closer parking may be possible near the junction 400 m south of here at G.R.: NT 131670 ///cubic.losses.organ, but this is within a (usually open) barrier for the quarry.

▶ 3 km / 2 mi | ▲ 130 m | ⌚ Short
Features: △ Kaimes Hill (259 m); △ Dalmahoy Hill (246 m)
Moderate | Quarry access road (beware lorries) then clear path to bealach. Kaimes Hill is mostly pathless grass with steep drops around the summit; Dalmahoy Hill has a faint path.

Route: Start - beginning of hill path at G.R.: NT 133670 ///proof.wrist.expect - bealach between Kaimes Hill & Dalmahoy Hill - climb broken wall on right - turn left to exit field by gate on south side - immediately turn right over gate - Kaimes Hill - return to bealach - Dalmahoy Hill - return to bealach - start by outward route

Route credit: Scotland Off the Beaten Track
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On our visit

Wildlife: Cows and calves near the start.
Weather: A sunny, almost windless, frosty morning, 2°C.

Chronological photo guide

[Climbing to the bealach]


[Dalmahoy Hill from the ascent of Kaimes Hill]

[Kaimes Hill]

[View back from near the summit of Kaimes Hill]

[Kaimes Hill]

[Kaimes Hill]

[Looking northeast from Kaimes Hill]

[Looking northwest from Kaimes Hill]

[Dalmahoy Hill]

[Dalmahoy Hill]

[View east from Dalmahoy Hill]

[View southwest from Dalmahoy Hill]

[Ravelrig Quarry]


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