Walking & Cycling

Changue Forest Trail

car park near Craigmalloch, approximately 1km East of Barr Village, KA26 9TN

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Start: car park near Craigmalloch, approximately 1km East of Barr Village

End: car park near Craigmalloch, approximately 1km East of Barr Village

Distance: 4 miles(6.5km)

Download map, route of path also available from: http://www.ayrshirepaths.org.uk/walkbarr.htm (Created by Ayrshire Paths) (Orange path on map)

Changue Forest Trail at Barr 13km - Of all the routes at Barr, this is the most strenuous due to its length. Although designated a cycle route those wishing to walk will also find it worthwhile.

Continuing up the Howe of Laggan there are excellent views over the Polmaddie Hill Group, which rises to over 1800 feet. This is an area which is still predominantly sheep country, where sheep paths and folds are evident. The route takes you through the heart of Changue, now a commercial forest in its many stages of development. The main species which can be seen are Sitka Spruce, Norway Spruce and Larch with some broadleaf trees including oak, ash and birch.

Looking northeast you can see that well-known Galloway mountain pass called "Nick of the Balloch". In olden times this was famous as a smuggling route. Men with pack horses would follow the perilous path and at the summit drink from the "brandy well", a spring which still flows with clear crystal water.

The word "Changue" of Gaelic origin means the large rounded hill-shoulder of the nigh impenetrable inner row of storm-swept mountains. A lengthy meaning perhaps but one which accurately describes this area, especially during winter. This is a notable excursion taking in the full aspect of the forest with its many magnificent views.

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