Trig Points….White?


If you read the comments then the whole point of white trig points and why becomes obvious…( thanks go to Neil 2MØNCM for the relevant info)

Remember the blog post <HERE> this appeared on ? After some investigation we roughly timelined the padlocks appearing on the trig point on the summit of Ben Lomond.

The Two Padlocks

The Two Padlocks

Now after my trip to activate Kings Seat in The Sidlaws, Ian WJZ had mentioned that possibly it had been done to enable surveyors to work in the dark, possible although I thought it only idiotic SOTA activators that worked the hills in the dark ( not me, fair weather activator ).

Roddy has sent me a photo of the Ben Donich Trig which looks as if it quite possibly was painted white at one point but no information as to it being white at any time.

I noted that other trigs in the King’s Seat area have been painted white at one stage. Craigowl Hill for example <Trig Info>

Remains of paint ?

Remains of paint ?

I have occasionally linked in previous blog posts to a website Trigpointing UK that ‘enthusiasts’ apparently called ‘Trig Point Baggers’ record their visits, this could be an added part of our activating hobby but personally I like trig points as they give me something to lean on whilst I recover my breath hi hi( if you remember the one of me on Goat Fell.)

I’ve scoured the net finding links to Trig points that have been painted white but no definite information as to the reason why . If you come across anything please feel free to share with us what you find out.

Further reading

Daily Telegraph article <HERE>

Wikipedia <HERE> <HERE>

Trigtools <HERE>

SMC article <HERE>

More Trig info <HERE>

Other links may follow…

About gm7something

64, married, three kids......overweight, unfit, folically challenged, need I go on ?
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4 Responses to Trig Points….White?

  1. ncmncat says:

    Hi Bobby,

    Changed the style I see, white trigs, I have come across dozens of white trigs over the years I never really put any thought into why. I do believe that the ones that are freshly painted are just done by some caring local that takes pride in their hill – and probably picks up litter from the hill as well.

    Anyway just my tuppence worth.



  2. gm7something says:


    I’m of that view too.King’s Seat was brilliant white. My fiefdom may deserve the other local one has once again been ‘painted’ by a ned.
    I wonder if you have read any of the comments placed on the TrigpointingUK site per trig point, one regular poster gives a concise bio on each Scottish trig he has visited including the ‘cost’ plus if you also read the article I have linked to, it shows how arduous a task it must have been for the people who built them.
    Sad to see them retired…


  3. ncmncat says:


    After doing the thoughtful thing and email the OS Igot this reply 12 hours later and this is what they say about the white trig points:

    The majority of Trig pillars were painted to provide protection from the elements. The colour white was generally chosen to improve the visibility however this is not as important as it might seem as long range trig observations were often made at night to lamps.

    However, as to why some are painted and others not, this was simply down to the request of the original landowner:

    – Some landowners stipulated that some pillars must be constructed of unpainted local stone and not concrete.
    – Some landowners (farmers) stipulated that the pillars not be painted at all as they were concerned that livestock might ingest the paint.
    – Other landowners stipulated that pillars emplaced on their land be painted to actually blend-in with the landscape.

    Hope this clears up any dull thoughts about the white trigs


  4. gm7something says:

    Excellent, Neil.

    I think I had had a ‘Homer’ moment in not doing the obvious.

    Good explanation which clears up the post.

    NOW has anyone came across a trig painted to blend in with the surrounding countryside ?


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