This Highlight is in a protected area
Please check local regulations for: Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park
Some small hills are so exquisitely situated that they wipe the floor with many loftier viewpoints, rewarding walkers with an unforgettable experience for minimal effort. Hikes to Conic Hill’s prominent summit, beautifully perched above the southern, island-studded shores of Loch Lomond, are a perfect case in point. On a good day, you won’t believe your eyes (or your luck) that views from such a gorgeously accessible hill exist.
Bonnie views from the very threshold of the Scottish Highlands
Conic Hill is on the Highland Boundary Fault, representing the very beginnings of the unique magic of the Scottish Highlands. Routes to the summit are well trodden and easy to follow over accommodating terrain.
The views are wonderful and commence almost as soon as your start gaining height. The wide, shimmering expanse of southern Loch Lomond, liberally speckled with a dozen islands, is stunning. Ben Lomond and the Arrochar Alps loom in the north. To the southwest, the peaks of the Isle of Arran and the hulking granite hump of Aisla Craig rise from the blue across the Firth of Clyde.
Conic Hill’s accessibility and low elevation mean that it makes for a perfect outing when Ben Lomond and the Arrochar Alps have been transformed by heavy snowfall. Suspend your disbelief for a moment and you could almost be staring down a Norwegian fjord or a lake in New Zealand.
Most walking routes to Conic Hill begin from Balmaha or Drymen via Garadhban Forest. Both offer a range of lodgings and eateries and are popular with picnickers and day-trippers from nearby Glasgow. There are a number of campsites, but if you are planning to wild camp, check the national park website for restrictions in this region.
If you're headed northbound along the West Highland Way, Conic Hill is your first challenge as its role as guardian to Loch Lomond below. Peaking at 1,184 feet (361 m), the walk up from the east is extremely steep with a gradient as high as 24%.
However, tough it out and you'll be rewarded with beautiful views over Loch Lomond, and on a clear day, you might even catch a wee peak of Ben Lomond, Scotland's southernmost Munro.
September 3, 2018
Beautiful view of Loch Lomond and the Highlands. Especially for hikers of the 'West Highland Way' makes a nice prelude to the desire for the following days.
Sometimes it can be a bit crowded, as many day trippers from Balmaha also venture the climb.
April 16, 2019
360 degree panoramic view from Conic Hill via Loch Lomond.
August 22, 2016
From Conic Hill you have a great view over the south end of Loch Lomond. The strenuous, steep climb up to the top is worth it and up on the mountain is plenty of space to make a picnic.
June 21, 2018
Walk up was steep and very busy. Most people come down the same route, however the Komoot way down across this hills is much quieter and nicer! Only problem was gate, to field and beach, was padlocked at bottom - had to shimmy through gap 😳
August 19, 2020
Best to avoid this during June to September. Very busy. All the visitors are causing a huge amount of errosion of the hillside, in spite of the best efforts of the National Park.
August 20, 2021
Here is enough wind to be left alone in front of Midges. You also look at one of the most beautiful holes.
August 27, 2019
View over Loch Lomond from Conic Hill - nice circular route (glad we went clockwise from the carpark though!)
September 6, 2019
Wonderful view from above Loch Lomond and into the wide valley in the south.
June 21, 2018
Really nice walk uphill and yes at times was really steep, with rewarding views over loch Lomond, went early Saturday, on my way down it was very congested but still worth it.
September 19, 2020
An exhausting climb, but rewarding views from Conic Hill to Loch Lochmond. Definitely take anti-midge remedies, it just teems with the critters
June 6, 2018
Perfect views over Loch Lomond, the few meters the summit high worth it!
April 25, 2019
Celebrate reaching the top by turning through 360 degrees to take in the (literally) breath-taking views.
If you are lucky, the waters of Loch Lomond will be glistening at your feet. To the north (right when looking out over the Loch) the highest peak you can make out is Ben Lomond, the mostly southerly of the Munros. (A Munro is a Scottish mountain with a summit of more than 3,000 feet, named after the man who first listed them all).
February 9, 2023
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