Sunny days in Scotland are something to be pounced on and so when luck would have it and we gained a day of glorious sunshine we jumped at the chance to explore some new nature trails. Around an hour drive from Glasgow and within the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park, our Sunday destination was the Three Lochs Forest Drive between Aberfoyle and Callander.
Though there’s not too much direction to the route we manage to find the start point. Unfortunately, we were rather late in the day in our arriving into the park and so headed directly to the second of the three lochs on the scenic drive, skipping Lochan Reòidhte and heading straight to Loch Drunkie.
We opted to start our visit with a quiet lunch near the parking at the side of Loch Drunkie before finding some forest trails to work off our eats. Our first of two walks took us up to the Pine Ridge Viewpoint. While quite a steep walk, the route is very pleasant and the view from the top is definitely worth the steeper sections!
Our second walk is along the edge of Loch Drunkie on what is known as The Little Drunkie Trail while meanders through the forested areas and is a nice shade on a warm day. It also has the lure of musical instruments along the paths including a giant wooded xylophone and a ring bell structure but being adults we of course are not interested in playing with such things.
Both walks are rather short and loop back to the car park but for us this worked out well as we had arrived late in the day and therefore had rather limited time to explore before the Three Lochs Forest Drive gates closed at 5pm. This seems such a shame on a lovely summer day but I suspect this must be due to staff cost and availability or something although I’m not sure why there needs to be gates at all.
We head further along the drive and stop briefly at the final loch on the route, Loch Achray. Another very pretty spot and one I think we’ll need to revisit at a later date to further.
With sunshine such a rare occurrence in recent months, we decide to head somewhere else to enjoy the warm evening. Only a few minutes from The Three Lochs Forest Drive is Loch Katrine and so we headed along to continue or day. Though a much more touristy and build up area, the number of visitors dropped quite quickly as we walked around the edge of the loch and further away from the cruise boat jetty area.
As we wander round we can’t help but realise how spoiled we must be with so many wonderful landscapes only an hour from our city suburb home. Our talk always comes back to our disappointment of the Lake District in Cumbria, England and our confusion of how it gained it’s iconic status when, in our opinion, there is many more impressive places just across the border. I guess us Scots are just spoiled for choice when it comes to exploring the outdoors.