Standing above the juncture where Glen Prosen emerges from the hills to meet the flat agricultural plains of Strathmore, the gently rounded slopes of Cat Law rise to a fine viewpoint, proffering vistas over both Highlands and Lowlands.
In life, there is an easy way to do something, and a hard way. The easiest way to reach the top of Kinnoull Hill is from the Forestry Commission’s Jubilee Car park, which lies to the east. The hard way is from Perth, in the west, ascending along the top of a dramatic, craggy escarpment.
Long distance trails are a great way to explore the landscape. Equally, they offer useful links between communities, links that can either be walked on their own or incorporated into other outings.
Sometimes turbulent, sometimes tranquil, the River North Esk always seeks to surprise. Rising in the rugged upper reaches of Glen Esk, the insistent ebb and flow streams down through Angus to enter the North Sea at Montrose Bay.
General George Wade’s network of military roads opened up the Highlands in the first half of the 18th century, enabling government troops to move swiftly through the mountains and glens.
Overlooking the meeting point of the Tay and Earn valleys, Moncreiffe Hill has a long history of settlement, dating back to the Iron Age when not one but two forts were constructed on its slopes.
The Dundee to Newtyle railway was one of Scotland’s earliest lines, a pioneering link that cut through the Sidlaw Hills. Built to transport goods into the city from the fertile lands of Strathmore, it opened in 1831.
Fife is not overly blessed with hills. Away from the tapering eastern end of the Ochils and the Lomonds, where West Lomond stands proud as the highest point in the kingdom, summits are scant and scattered.
I always try and avoid spending too much time walking on roads, preferring the satisfying crunch of gravel or the soft yield of grassy slopes below my boots.
Come rain or shine, the West Sands in St Andrews always draws visitors. In the height of summer, it is a popular spot with sun worshippers, holidaymakers, surfers, sand yachts and kite buggies. In the depths of winter, hardy walkers, runners and horse riders proliferate.