MOUNTAIN BIKING in East Scotland
All photographs on this site copyright Chris Stamp, except where otherwise indicated
Green Route: 22 kms approx
The green route consists of a stretch of quiet country lane on the approach to a small but charismatic glen, then a ride off-road over landrover track through the glen itself, full of wildlife, from adders to red kites. It returns the same way, although there is potential for exploration on the adjacent hills.
Note that the blue ride is not one that Iíve done myself, but is featured on MTB Routes Scotland. It looks to have more significant gradients that the green route described.
The yellow route creates a circuit using roads to link the off-road sections, and again is not one I've done myself, but is recommended by friends.
The description here covers the green route only.
The main parking location for access to the glen is at the ford near the entrance. This location is the northernmost of the two marked on the map, but Iíve also marked a smaller informal space just off the road, allowing the longer ride that incorporates the stretch of road.
Moderate. Some modest inclines, bumpy tracks and puddles but nothing to phase a regular mountain biker.
The green route starts with a short incline up a quiet country lane from the car parking location and then through beautiful farming landscape towards the glen. After crossing the ford (or the adjacent footbridge) a left turn takes you past the farmhouse ("Little Glenshee" on map) and then into the glen on roughish landrover tracks. A few miles later after passing through a classic Scottish upland landscape, the route ends with a view down into Strathbraan (or continue on yellow route).
There are opportunities to explore towards Findowie Hill from the north end of the glen, possibly making a circular route via Logiealmond Lodge, but that isnít something Iíve yet tried. There used to be a no cycling sign discouraging such exploration, but I trust that has been moved in accordance with current access legislation.
Watch out for adders crossing on the track. I donít know what the consequences of running one over might be for a rider, but no doubt it wouldnít be healthy for the snake.
In spring the glen is filled with the evocative call of breeding upland birds, from snipe and curlew to ring ouzel and buzzard. I particularly recommend this time of year for a visit.
Note that Glen Garr, just northeast of Little Glenshee also has excellent opportunities for off-road cycling (to be covered elsewhere on this site) and a route covering both is very possible.
Yellow and Blue routes: See comments below