Costa del Campsies.
Cessna 210L Centurian II on Dunbrach.
= 5.7 mile/Ascent =+395m)
A competition in Glenboig just to the east of Glasgow meant I didn't have many options for Crashsites to visit. There was four that I knew of within range but I'd already been to two of them and I didn't have a map ref for the third, so that left a more modern day crash on Dunbrach, near Fintry in the Campsie Fells.
As Heather's competition didn't start until the afternoon it was a slightly later start than usual so it was 11:30am by the time I parked at the start of my walk to Dunbrach and I had to be back at Glenboig by 4:00pm.
Above and below:-Parked at the start of a farm track that leads through the woods up to Dunbrach.
I worked out that if I allowed 30 minutes for the drive back to Glenboig then I would have to be back at the car by 3:30pm, so that allowed me 2 hours each way which meant I'd have to be at the crashsite by 1:30pm; more than enough time you would think but I had to make allowances for my natural ability to dawdle, which includes spending too much time taking photos and admiring the views.
above and next two photos:- Walking up this track probably took twice as long as it should because I kept stopping to take photographs or have a look at the scenery.
view north across to Fintry.
As it was a wee bit 'George Michael'* I was pleased when I reached the woods as there was some lovely dappled shade provided by the trees, unfortunately this only lasted while the track was heading west, after about 1 mile it turned to the south and into the sun!
above and below:-nice shaded stretch heading west.
above and next 3 photos:- No shade heading south.
After about two mile the track came to an end at a little maze of gates and fences, this was my cue to head uphill through the trees to reach the cliffs where the Cessna crashed. Heading up through the trees didn't actually involve going through any trees as there was a nice big clearing containing a small burn.
Scene of the Gunfight at the OK Coral**
Nice big clearing up onto Dunbrach Hill.
Once above the treeline I had to backtrack a short distance to reach the bottom of the crags where the crash occured, by then I would have timed it perfectly to climb up the steep gully at the hottest part of the day and the temperature was more akin to the Costa del Sol than Scotland!
Above and below:-Approaching the crags on Dunbrach Hill.
There were several gullies running down the crags so although it would have been less hard work going up the flank of Dunbrach to reach the top of the crags I figured it would be easier to locate the correct gully by approaching from below, especially as I had seen a photograph of the wreckage on the interweb taken immediately after the crash in 1990, which was taken from below.
The Gully where the Cessna crashed
My photo taken in 2016 Photo from the interweb taken in 1990
View east fron Dunbrach. The prominant Hill to the right is Meickle Bin.
My photo taken in 2016 Interweb photo taken in 1990
As with the Cessna crashsite I visited in the Ochil Hills even though I could prove with photos that I'd found the exact spot I don't count them on my list of 'Crashsites Visited' unless I find a piece of the aircraft(no matter how small) or if there is a memorial at the actual crashsite. Unlike the Cessna in the Ochills however I did find a piece here, although it was tiny it still counts.
Above and below:-A tiny nugget of melted aircraft alloy.
I also found a piece of what I was convinced was a lump of melted black plastic or fibre glass but on closer examination it turned out to be a dried out lump of sheep turd!! Luckily as it was such a hot day I'd took along loads of water so I had a little spare to wash my hands before eating my bait!*
The Cessna hit the crag rising to the top left and fell back into this gully.
There was also a memorial at this one.
Above and below:-The crashsite taken from above, by cropping the photo above it became almost a perfect match for the one taken in 1990.
The memorial is fixed to the larger of the three small rock faces at the top right.
View across to Meickle Bin showing the location of some of the pieces of the Fairy Firefly*** that crashed on there.
View of the crashsite from above.
According to the AAIB report the Cessna hit the crag on the left then fell back into the gully below, the memorial plaque is fixed to the small crag indicated with the yellow arrow.
As it only took me just over an hour to reach the location I had ample time to sit on a ledge in the sunshine and have my bait, I also had time to consider going back using a slightly longer route over onto the landrover track that runs up to the Radar Station on Holehead Hill then following that down via Campsie Muir to join the B822 about a mile uphill from where I'd parked the Pug.
Dunbrach from Campsie Muir.
Meickle Bin from Campsie Muir.
Above and below:-Following the Radar Station access road back down to the B822
Holehead Hill and the Radar Station
Once onto the B822 it was an easy walk downhill for just over a mile, but
I did have to keep my wits about me to avoid being hit by one of the many
speeding cars that were zipping up and down the road which was
surprisingly busy. Worse than the speeding cars were the numerous mamil
cyclists* who were going just as quick as the cars but were able to sneak
up behind me without being heard, at least the ones going downhill
anyways; the ones going uphill were only going about 2mph and their
puffing and wheezing which was accompanied by some cursing at the
steepness of the hill gave me ample time to get out of their way.
In the end it was a Car towing a caravan that came closest to wiping me out!.
As the car and caravan approached me on a stretch of road with little or no grass verge another car decided to overtake it preventing him from going around me, so instead of stopping he just kept coming at me leaving me with two choices:
1= get hit by a caravan or 2 =dive over a wall.
Luckily the wall wasn't very high and it was a nice soft grassy landing on the other side!
Almost back to where I started.
*---'George Michael' was in a pop group called Wham!, which is how you
pronounce warm if your from Newcastle!.'Bait' what you call ones packed
lunch if your from Newcastle. 'Mamil Cyclists' = middle aged men in
**--This is not the location of the Gunfight at the OK coral, that was in America, this is in Scotland.
***---Meickle Bin, Meickle Bin2