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Any good routes accessible from Glasgow?

BrdukBrduk Posts: 90
edited August 2009 in Routes
Okay, i've had my steed for about 2 weeks now, so the local park and rides to and from work have lost their novelty, so i'm looking to get out for a day on the MTB at the weekend on a route somewhere, but where? is the question.

As i'm just getting back into biking (not that I seen it as anything other than a way to get around the first time) and want to "get out and about" & improve my fitness/endurance, i'm not looking for anything overly taxing/technical/borderline dangerous at the moment. At the opposite end of the spectrum i'm not looking for an 8km beginners route or miles of tarmac. Ideally, the route will have a mix of terrain, some nice scenery and maybe some fun downhill sections. I reckon 30 to 40 miles should be realistic. From hill/trail walking experience, somewhere like the Glen Loin footpath at arrochar might be suitable?

I appreciate this might be a big ask, but to make matters even more complicated, i'll be relying on public transport from Glasgow! (am I just as well going along to Pollok park? :lol: )



  • allyharpallyharp Posts: 57
    There is a well known loop that takes in the Glen Loin path from Arrochar - ... ardinal=10

    It's very short and would only take around 2 hours. There is another well known route from the same starting point going around the Ardgartan peninsula. Should be easy to find online.

    Both are easily accessible from Arrochar & Tarbet train station. Train times are limited, but you could maybe return via the West Loch Lomond cycleway back to Balloch (14 miles but flat) for a more frequent train.

    Another alternative would be Mugdock. Loads of stuff around there and the start of the West Highland Way, just turn up and explore. Get the train to Milngavie and follow the West Highland Way signs.
  • 77ric77ric Posts: 601
    the following all come from the routes & riding section of the website (from the tabs at the top)

    Blue Beginner Route will take maybe an hour/ hour and a half

    Red Intermediate Route maybe 2 to 3 hours

    The Classic possibly 3 to 5 hours
    Fancy a brew?
  • WoodywmbWoodywmb Posts: 888
    Whitelee Forest windfarm at Eaglesham has 60 miles of new dust track and loads of off-road paths heading towards the south of the old forest. The new site map was posted on this forum a few months ago. Worth a search. You could cycle along the Clyde from Glasgow and up and over from Carmunnock and East Kilbride to the Eaglesham road.
  • passoutpassout Posts: 4,609
    I can't help you on public transport but I used to MTB around Aberfoyle on my holidays. Some great routes around there. Try the Queen Elizabeth Forest Visitor Centre for Info.
    It's not 'very' far from Glasgow but it may well mean a car journey.
    'Happiness serves hardly any other purpose than to make unhappiness possible' Marcel Proust.
  • BoardinBobBoardinBob Posts: 697
    Mugdock Park and the surrounding area would be my suggestion

    Train from the low level platforms at Central up to Milngavie. Join the west highland way from the town centre and head towards Mugdock. You'll notice tons of singletrack trails branching off from the WHW. There must be hundreds of miles of singletrack around there.

    Generally follow the routes 77ric pasted but don't hesitate to veer off and explore.
  • allyharpallyharp Posts: 57
    I'd second that. Even if you're looking to go out for 3+ hours it could be worth just following the blue route and setting time to deliberately divert down the singletrack that shoots off to the sides at various points.
  • Wallace1492Wallace1492 Posts: 3,707
    Never mind the public transport from Glasgow, plenty of routes available on the bike. I commute into Glasgow from Milngavie each day and tray and vary route home. Have found some crackers that combine all sorts of cycling - favourite is along south of river to Renfrew - mixture of quiet roads and Clydeside walkway then over ferry (£1.20) to Yoker. From there you have some options, simple up through Drumchapel, Bearsden to Milngave (and on to mugdock), along the canal to Bowling, Dumbarton, Balloch, Drymen WHW to Milngave - a long one but great fun. Up Cochno Road and over Kilpatricks to Craigton, or taling it further to Burncrooks (when I did this on Monday couldn't find a path from Greenside to Burncrooks and ended up walking/carrying for quite a while). On other side of Kilpatricks are great downhills, and these can lead to trails around Mugdock, Carbeth and the like. The smaller roads round Baldernock are also good fun, and can lead back into Glasgow.

    Although i do not recomend the Allander/Kelvin path as it is very overgrown at the bottom end of the Allander.
    "Encyclopaedia is a fetish for very small bicycles"
  • allyharpallyharp Posts: 57
    The smaller roads round Baldernock are also good fun, and can lead back into Glasgow.
    I agree with that, I used to do routes around there whenever it was raining so I could avoid the mud!

    Starting from Milngavie you can carry on to Torrance, where you can join the canal. One direction takes you back to Glasgow, alternatively you can head to Kirkintilloch and join the Strathkelvin railway path back to Strathblane then Milngavie.
  • Wallace1492Wallace1492 Posts: 3,707
    A cracker from Baldernock is up past the Lynn caves, take a right along the dirt track, keep climbing and you pass Travellers camp, avoid their mangy dogs, and keep going up - eventually come out in Lennox Forest and from there you have choice of tarmac road down to Lennoxtown or tray and find was through the trees, and down past some serious MTB trails, both will bring you out in Lennoxtown where you can zip along the old railway to Strathblane, from their either Old Milndavie Road, or better still the track up past the Gowk Stane and into Carglas woods, great downhill then from the Gun Emplacements to Milngavie, with one bit of cracking singletack at the South Lodge Car Park - get looking for it!!

    Has anyone ever gon to the top of the Campsies from the track near Killearn? Just wondering how ridable it is.
    "Encyclopaedia is a fetish for very small bicycles"
  • allyharpallyharp Posts: 57
    Has anyone ever gon to the top of the Campsies from the track near Killearn? Just wondering how ridable it is.
    I hear the Glasgow Mountain Bike Club do that quite often. They head up near Killearn, scooting behind Dumgoyne and along the top of Slackdhu then retreat a little and come down to Cantywheery Cottage.

    I've been meaning to try it myself for a while, but not quite got round to it yet.
  • Wallace1492Wallace1492 Posts: 3,707

    Need to try that one soon. But probably best when fullly dry the top of Campsies will get pretty wet. Not sure I like th look of the downhil lto Cantwheery Cottage!!! Looks a bit steep. Take it you don't ride with the GMBC? I have thought of it, but I like to potter about and am not either that skillful or fit enough.

    Last night was Baldernock to Torrance, on to cycle way to Strathblane, then up the hill to Boards Farm, past the Gowk Stane - cracking hill with great views of the Blane Valley, the through Carglass woods, down past Mugdock to finish.

    Tonight, all going well will be what I call "3 peaks challenge" - mostly on road (on my Kona Caldera with narrow slicks) Baldernock, Lynn caves hill, down to Strathblane Road, up to Mugdock, either across moors or backroad to Strathblane, up the Cuilt Brae, down WHW to Kyber Pass, up the Kyber (oooerrr missus!!) then my favourite decent from the Gun Emplacements to the Water Works, there is a cracking piece of singletack just as you come out of Mugdock Park.
    "Encyclopaedia is a fetish for very small bicycles"
  • WoodywmbWoodywmb Posts: 888
    Did part of this last Saturday and today (Saturday, 11th). Couldn't believe the amount of great cycling there was - quiet roads, canal towpath, old railway line, bike tracks, woodlan trails, singletrack etc. Great views with just enough climbing, together with superb cycling weather (sunny and breezy). Did it on MTBs with slicks and trekking bars. Two great days out an hour from home. Thanks for the info!
  • nomadicbrynomadicbry Posts: 223
    If you're in Glasgow cycle over to pollok park. The council built routes are to be honest pretty rubbish. However if you stray into the woods above the bit where the defined routes cross the path to the table top bits etc you'll find some interesting trails in teh woods...pretty much make your own. Some bits can be quite technical, very rooty and slippy but all good fun and short enough for you to have some funfinding and mastering some over the harder bits

    You could also try Cathkin braes not been but hearing some reasonable reports

    Carron valley is in the campsies (take the road from lennoxtown to Fintry then turn right towards Denny) Without your won transport it could be hard to gt to though
    Enough bikes to open a bike shop but always room for one more...
  • You could also try the Cathkin Braes, which will be where the 2014 commonwealth games are being held. There route will be marked out at the moment as there is a race on Sunday. Im going up tomorrow just to ride it for fun as i live only a couple of miles away from it.
  • wjd 28wjd 28 Posts: 3
    Anyone know any good routes around the Renfrewshire area?

    Apart from the Gleniffere Braes that is.
  • wjd 28wjd 28 Posts: 3

    Any others?
  • BoardinBobBoardinBob Posts: 697
    I did this on Sunday

    Pretty nice route and very scenic. That site lists it as 12 miles but I think that's as the crow flies and doesn't account for elevation gained/ lost as my GPS tracker said I did 18 miles!

    Edit; wont let me direct link but use the Bike Hike site and search for routes near "Mugdock" and it's the one listed as Khyber/ Beech Tree Inn/ Drumoygne
  • chuckdchuckd Posts: 105
    Where do the Gleniffer braes routes start from and what are they like, I might give them a try tomorrow?
  • jumbolugsjumbolugs Posts: 181
    Renfrewshire routes:

    If you are approaching Gleniffer Braes from the Paisley direction - across the road from Robertson car park there is a wee path heading downhill (west?) away from the road, this leads to numerous singletrack paths that wind around the side of the hills on this side of the road - they are quite extensive. Watch out for dog-walkers though.

    There are also more trails on the other side of the braes - starting from Robertson car park if you head out to the east you will cross a road (sergeant law rd I think) then find the trails I am talking about.

    I live near Johnstone and have only recently started exploring offroad routes in this area myself. Don't know the braes that well as yet but hopefully the above will help.

    There is also Neilston Pad I think - haven't explored that one yet but it's on my list.

    Last Sunday I rode round Skiff Wood (back of Howwood) just to check it out. Steep winding JCB trail about 2km long, has potential I think. Then went for a spin round Rannoch Woods/Bluebell woods (Johnstone) which are quite good.

    Parkhill Woods near Lochwinnoch (just off the cycle track).

    Muirshiel Country Park has a couple of trails. PM me if you want to know more.
    I see Walkers Cycling Club are doing a ride up MistyLaw in Muirshiel tomorrow night (Wed 19th Aug).
  • chuckdchuckd Posts: 105
    The ride I done was just off Capletthill road, the road linking Paisley and Barrhead. You basically cycle up the road leading to Brownside farm and then through the gate (beware of friendly highland cattle) and follow the road/path up and then once you are parallel to the golf course you should be able to find more tracks after going through some more gates/styles.
  • Get the train down to Sanquhar and then bike down to Drunlanrigg, train back :lol:
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