Corserine to Meikle Millyea Hike
Where: Corserine to Meikle Millyea, from
Forest Lodge, Dumfries & Galloway
When: September 20th 2012
Who: I Parker
Why: Good weather so a day out
Weather: Sunny spells, rain, hail and
Distance: About 12 miles, 7 hours
The Forest Estate is situated about 34
miles southeast of Ayr off the A713. The
entrance to the estate is about 7 miles south
of Casphairn, 2 miles north of Dalry, with
signs at the entrance stating Forest
This is a good scenic, single track, tar
road with many passing places.
The range here is known as the Corserine
range or Rhinns of Kells, containing from the
north, the 1,732 ft Black Craig, 2,043 ft
Coran of Portmark, 2,011 ft Bow, 2,162 ft
Gairnsgarroch, 2,280 ft Meaul, 2,648 ft
Carlin's Cairn, 2,671 ft Corserine, 2,034 ft
Meikle Craigtarson, 2,349 ft Millfire, 2,421
ft Milldown, and 2,457 ft Meikle Millyea.
This photo tour shows the route up the
southeast ridge of Corserine, then south
across to Millfire, south to Milldown, then
down the east side of Meikle Millyea.
The image below is from the Forest Estate
road with Corserine in the distance.
Road Map . Hill Walking
click on Map . Large Hill Route Map
The image below is of The Green House
situated about 2 miles along the estate road.
This is a Natural Power Organization.
After about 3 miles from the start of the
estate road, you reach the hiking car park
with seating areas, as seen below. There is a
map here that shows the roads throughout the
forest to the hills. Many of the roads are
named after people.
There is a sign here that states: if any
cars are left in the car park after 8
o'clock, the estate management will report
the owners as being lost in the hills or
forest, and may need rescuing. Even though
the trails are marked, it is best to carry an
OS map as there are many other forest roads
here that you can take a wrong turn onto and
The road straight ahead is the Professor
Hans Heiberg Road. This road is normally used
out to, or on the road back from the most
southern hill on this range, Meikle
The main tourist trail to Corserine leads
off to the right in this image on a well
marked path. This car park is about 330 feet
above sea level.
The map below shows two east side trails
up Corserine, the trail in blue is the
tourist trail up past Loch Harrow and up the
This photo tour is going up the steeper
southeast ridge of Corserine past the south
side of Loch Harow. Time wise, these two east
side routes to the top of Corserine are about
On the road round to Corserine, over to
your right through the trees, you will see a
figurehead, as seen below, at the entrance to
the Forest Lodge. This figurehead is from the
Fred Olsen passenger liner named the Black
Watch that was sunk during the Second World
War. The ship was operated on the Newcastle -
The estate must have connections to the
Fred Olsen cruise line, explaining why many
of the forest roads have Scandinavian
The forest road to Corserine heads up into
the forest past a white house, as seen
After about half of a mile to a mile past
the white house, your reach a road on the
left with a sign stating Birger Natvig Road.
The image below is from walking down Birger
Natvig Road, and looking across Loch Harrow
to the Corserine southeast ridge.
The forest road runs all the way round to
a short forest break, next to a small quarry.
I hiked up through the trees on the left side
of the forest break, then took the route as
seen below, there are a number of routes that
can be taken. I find the steepest routes give
the best pictures, and are normally the
driest. There was about 50 yards of tussocks
between the forest and the little hillock,
that was not the best hiking, but from then
on it was good going, although steep in
If you want to take an easier route up,
follow the blue signs up past this road to
the northeast ridge Tourist Trail. The two
ridges are similar, but the northeast ridge
has a path leading up where there are no
really steep parts, just steadily steep most
of the way. Tour of the Tourist Trail.
The image below is looking down from close
to the top of the first ridge, looking back
down to the forest break and Loch Harrow.
The image below is from the top of the
first ridge looking at the route up to the
second ridge. I went straight up here but
there are a number of less direct routes.
The view below is from close to the top of
the second ridge, looking down to loch Harrow
and the forest road leading round the south
side of the loch.
The view below is from a cairn on the
southeast ridge looking to Corserine
The image below is from about half way
between the southeast ridge cairn and
Corserine summit, looking back down from an
aircraft crash site. This crash site is said
to be the one of a Second World War de
The image below is from another aircraft
crash site on the north side of Corserine, by
the route over to Carlin's Cairn. This crash
site is said to be of a Second World War Avro
Anson. It takes about 1 hour to hike over to
the 2,648 ft Carlin's Cairn and back. There
are 4 other hills north of Carlin's Cairn
above 2,000 ft, those are normally hiked from
the Old Lead Mines at Casphairn.
The image below is from Corserine Trig
Point looking south to Millfire, Milldown and
Meikle Millyea. The route across these hills
is fairly straight forward with all the
danger on the east side, if visibility is
The view below is when hiking across to
Millfire. Note the high drops on the east
side of Millfire, about 1,200 feet.
The view below is the north side of
Millfire, about 300 ft from the lowest part
of the crossing to the summit.
The image below is from the cairn on
Millfire looking south to Milldown and Meikle
Millyea. It is about a 200 feet hike up to
Milldown from the lowest part of the
The image below is of the rocky east side
of Milldown. This looks a challenging hike
up, about 1,300 feet of picking your way up
between the rocks.
The image below is looking back from
Milldown to Corserine and the steep route up
the rocky east side of Millfire, about 1,200
The image below is from the cairn on
Milldown looking south to Meikle Millyea. On
the left of Meikle Millyea summit is a cairn
and Trig Point, and on the right is a cairn,
said to be at the highest point. It is about
a 350 feet hike up to the summit from the
lowest point on the crossing.
The image below is from Trig Point on
Meikle Millyea looking back at Milldown,
Millfire and Corserine. About 500 yards
southwest of this point is another cairn,
said to be on the highest point on Meikle
The southwest cairn gives good views over
the hills on the south side of Loch Trool,
such as the 2,211 ft Curleywee and 2,352 ft
Lamachan, that have an interesting ridge
The image below is going down the east
side of Meikle Millyea following a stone
dyke/fence. There is a path all the way down
next to the dyke. This is a long way down, or
up if you do the route from this side
You can just see a white farm house in the
image below that you pass on the way back to
the car park, and Forest Lodge in the trees
just beyond the white farm house.
The image below is from the lower ridge on
the route down the east side of Meikle
Millyea. The path follows the dyke all the
way down, or close to the bottom, another
path leads over to this steep way down. The
stile leads to a short forest break that has
a few trees laying across it, so takes a bit
of a detour round the trees to reach the
The road down to the right, past the watch
tower, is the Professor Hans Heiberg Road.
This road leads back to the Forest Lodge car
park, about 2 and a half miles. The Professor
Hans Heiberg Road leads straight to the car
park, best not to turn onto any other roads
on the way.
This was a fairly tough hike of about
3,100 feet, when adding up the climb onto
Corserine, taking into acount the car park is
about 330 feet above sea level, and adding
the climbs between the other three hills.
This route probably averages about 7 hours. I
tend to take longer as I normally have to
wait around a lot to get sunny pics, and like
exploring many of the sub peaks.
Some hikers take on the whole range in one
day by getting dropped off at the north end
of the range, at either Drumjohn or the Old
Lead Mines by Casphairn, and getting picked
up at the Forest Lodge car park. The
Corserine range north hills photo tour gives
more information on the whole range.
Map . Large Route Map .
Corserine range north
hills Photo Tour .