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eildons hill walk

Eildon Hills Walk

See also: Melrose Town Trail

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Eildon Hills Walk

On a clear day the views from the three main hills are breathtaking - to the South are the Cheviots which divide England from Scotland, to the North the Lammermuirs and Moorfoots, and to the West the hills of Upper Tweeddale.
If you are unsure, there is a view indicator on Mid Hill, which has the names and directions of the many hills inscribed on its brass plaque. This indicator was purchased by public subscription in 1927 - it cost 140, including the granite plinth - and has the dedication : "To the memory of Sir Walter Scott. From this spot he was wont to view and point the glories of the Borderland."
Interestingly, the famous Scott's View is the reverse view - the Eildons from Bemersyde Hill.

photo: scotts view
Scotts View

As Scott stood and took in the beauty of the scene, so you, too, might like to stand for a moment and think about those who have stood on the very spot on which you stand.
When the Border country was a vast forest, cut through by the river system, one of the few areas not heavily wooded were the hilltops. To these, then, our ancestors would retreat in times of danger, with a clear view of anyone approaching. These Iron Age peoples built one of the largest forts in the area on the very top of Eildon Hill North. Within this fort, which extended to 39 acres, the Selgovae, our local tribe, built their homes within the triple rings of defence which can still be seen today, particularly when there has been a light covering of snow, or in cross lighting. The platforms for almost 300 huts have been identified, and pottery, jewellery, flint flakes and signs of industry have all been discovered within the fort. The springs which bubble up in at least two places provided a handy source of water, without which life up on top would have been much more difficult.
More recently, it has been suggested that the area might not have been used for permanent dwellings, but have been a gathering place for communal gatherings and ceremonial occasions - a religious site, rather than just an Iron Age housing scheme.

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