Ballantrae to Heronsford

Ailsa Craig and Knockdolian

As I was fighting off a serious bout of man-flu 1, nothing too strenuous today: a nice circuit from Ballantrae taking in some of the tracks in the Stinchar Valley path network to Heronsford (a very cool place-name) and back.  Perfect early autumn walking.  

Jazz on bridge in Glenapp Castle grounds

I didn’t know whether it was possible to wander through the grounds of Glenapp Castle, so it was a pleasant surprise to see a signed path heading along the Kilphin Burn in the grounds.  This occasionally squelchy path criss-crossed the burn over a series of nice wooden bridges through the lovely woods with some seriously big fir trees.  It emerges at Smyrton where we take our lives in our hands+paws and cross the A77 with its speedy ferry traffic.  But now we are on a quiet track that heads up the hill into an area of cleared forestry and then, with a bit of meandering, end up on the old hill track to New Luce 2.

Jazz on track near Crailoch

We branch off along another old, beech-lined track heading for the lane at Crailoch 3.  It’s now a pleasant wander along a very quiet lane heading for Heronsford where we head into Laggan House Country Park and the forestry track back to Ballantrae.  This was a pleasant 3-hour wander in attractive countryside.



  1. i.e. a cold
  2. This will be an interesting future wander if we can arrange transport to both ends.
  3. A lovely farmhouse with a great view.  If the owners want to bequeath it to me in their wills I’d be grateful.
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