Sights & Sounds
The tower was built in the 19th century as a monument to General William Burnett who fought with Wellington in the Napoleonic Wars. Ascend the modern spiral staircase inside to reach the top. Here, a wire fence provides safety for all, and the views are that little bit more rewarding.In terms of foliage, look out for tall larch, conifer and pine trees, wild heather and blaeberries. Wildlife enthusiasts can keep an eye out for cuckoos, woodpeckers, roe deer and red squirrels in the undergrowth.
Make sure you bring snacks, water and even a tempting picnic to celebrate at the top. Supplies can be picked up in Banchory, which has a mix of supermarkets and cafés, but a simple flask of soup and a slice of bread never tastes so good as after a hike. Do get active in Aberdeenshire, it’s definitely worth it.
The Deeside Way
The Deeside way runs through Scolty. This is a peaceful route between Aberdeen and Ballater, popular for jogging, cycling and horseriding.
-Parking is available at the base of the hill. Costs are currently £1 for up to 1 hour, £1.50 for up to 3 hours, and £2 as a day rate.
-Toilets – the nearest public toilets are located in Banchory at the Bellfield car park.
-Ensure you are wearing appropriate clothing and sensible footwear. Hillsides are exposed and the weather can change rapidly, so wet weather gear (either warm or lightweight, depending on the season) is advisable.
-Remember to pack the suncream. On a bright day the wind may make things feel cool, but it’s remarkably easy to burn in this weather. Slap it on!
-Bring any medication you may need.
-Don’t forget water. Exercise is thirsty work.
-Even though this is a relatively gentle hike, do let people know where you’re headed, and when you hope to be home, especially if hiking alone.