Location: 2.5 km west of Aberfoyle Lochan Spling
Lochan Spling Distance: 2.75 km (1.75 miles)
Maximum gradient: 1:7
Duchray Water Distance: 10.75 km (6.75 miles)
Maximum gradient: 1:5
Parking: About four horse boxes/trailers
These rides start from the Forestry Commission Scotland car park at Milton, which is off the B829 from Aberfoyle. Turn left at a mill house onto a single track road and over a small bridge. Follow signs for the car park and horse box parking from here.
LOCHAN SPLING: To the south of the main car park, by the information panels, follow the brown waymarked path to a wooden bridge over the Duchray Water and into mixed woodland. At the junction marked letter ‘a’ either head right through conifer forest or left down to Lochan Spling. Whichever way you ride the loop, head back over the bridge to the car park. Look out for wildlife sculptures around this route.
DUCHRAY / DEER CRAIG: Again, start by crossing the bridge, following brown then blue waymarkers on the right hand fork through the forest to the west of the lochan. At the next junction, marked ‘c’, take the forest road to the right up a slight rise. Ben Lomond soon comes into view. Turn left at Drumore Cottage where the path rises to its highest point and you can sit and enjoy the views of forest and hills above Aberfoyle. Continue on the main route to a T junction and either follow blue waymarkers left and back to Lochan Spling or extend the ride by turning right with the Pow burn on your left.
Take the next forest road on the left rising sharply uphill and left again at the next T junction where you will see a waymarker for the Rob Roy Way (marked RRW). There is a steep downhill section here, so take care. Ignore the forest road on your left and cross a small bridge. Continuing straight ahead, the road soon turns into tarmac. Ignore a route on the right signed Loch Ard Cycle Route, go past Balleich Cottage on your right and ignore a road signed for Doon Hill. You are now in Manse Road, which passes the old cemetery where you will see two metal mort safes by the ruined church. These protected bodies from grave robbers and are thought to be the best preserved in Scotland. Take the next road on the left past a bench and post box and signed Hotel, and continue to a crossroads marked ‘b’. Turn right here following brown waymarkers around the south of Lochan Spling. At the next junction turn right and back over the bridge to the car park.