Mull of Galloway Trail

Mull of Galloway Trail

Rotary  Mull of Galloway Trail

Please also see our separate dedicated website for the Mull of Galloway Trail http://www.mullofgallowaytrail.co.uk

Route and other information.

Following the successful completion of the Lochryan Coastal Path by Stranraer Rotary Club (see separate information on this website), the Club decided to complete a trail from Stranraer to the Mull of Galloway, the most southerly point in Scotland. This enables a walk from there to Skelmorlie in north Ayrshire using the Lochryan Coastal Path (11 miles) and the Ayrshire Coastal Path (100 miles) With links to other paths it is possible to walk to Cape Wrath on the north west point of the Scottish Mainland. The trail is part of the Scottish section of the International Appalachian Trail (www.iat-sia.com) and also connects, near Stranraer, with the 212 mile Southern Uplands Way across to the east coast.

The 26 mile Mull of Galloway Trail which opened in August 2012 comprises paths and trails with only a short section of walking on roads and passes through agricultural land and woods with some excellent views.

The southern end of the Trail starts at the lighthouse which was built in 1830 by Robert Stevenson, grandfather of Robert Louis Stevenson, the well know author of Kidnapped and Treasure Island. From the Mull the path follows close to the cliffs overlooking Luce Bay until it reaches Drummore. It then makes its way by Terally Bay, Logan Mill, and Ardwell to Sandhead shortly after which it strikes inland to pass by West Freugh Aerodrome and Culhorn to Stranraer.

The route is detailed in the Mull of Galloway Trail website http://www.mullofgallowaytrail.co.uk and in the leaflet which is available at Tourist Information Centres in Stranraer and Newton Stewart.

The Mull of Galloway Trail stretches for 26 miles from Stranraer to the Mull of Galloway and links with the Loch Ryan Coastal Path and Southern Upland Way.  The Mull of Galloway is the most southerly point in Scotland and its link with the Loch Ryan Coastal Path, the Ayrshire Coastal Path and the Clyde Coastal Path forms the Firth o Clyde Rotary Trail.  The trail forms the Scottish chapter of the International Appalachian Trail, linking up with the West Highland Way and so providing a designated route for walkers wishing to traverse the entire length of Scotland to its northernmost tip at Dunnet Head.

The Mull trail follows the general line of red endorsed on the map, inland between Stranraer and Clayshant and thereafter following the coastline of the Mull of Galloway peninsula. The terrain is generally flat, broken by the occasional steep gradients, particularly to the south of Drummore and stout footwear is recommended.  The varied landscape with its large numbers of species of birds and other wildlife such as deer and seals, with wild flowers of varying varieties, provides for an interesting and colourful walk.

The trail is indicated with signs and waymarkers which display the trail logo and directional arrows.   Directional arrows may also be fixed to other posts or trees.   On kissing gates, the directional arrows are sited on the top of the post at the exit side.  Some waymarkers are numbered to assist walkers following this route description.  Where the trail reaches the coast the way-marked route is generally above high water mark; however there are sections where walkers may prefer to walk along the beach, subject to the tides being suitable.  A total of fourteen information boards are located along the route and relate to the history of the area.

All walkers using the trail do so at their own risk and are expected to take responsibility for their own actions, the safety of themselves and others, the welfare of livestock and wildlife, and the avoidance of damage to crops, all in keeping with the recommendations of the Scottish Outdoor Access Code.

Route - Stranraer to Mull of Galloway:

The route is approximately north to south and follows the east coastline of the Mull of Galloway peninsula.   The distances listed here are from Stranraer Tourist Information Office and are approximate.    From Stranraer Tourist Information Office the route sets off eastward on the A77 trunk road before turning right at the third junction over the railway bridge into Ladies Walk.  Crossing the A75 trunk road the route continues southwards into Westwood Avenue to the end of the cul-de-sac where it turns right through a gap between two houses and onto a track through a wood (known locally as The Approach).  The route continues on this track for approximately 2 kilometers crossing a public road after kilometer.  On leaving the wood [waymarker No.9 - 3k], the trail turns right onto a narrow public road before turning left through a kissing gate to cross a field towards a wood.  Passing over a small sleeper bridge and through kissing gates at the entry and exit from the wood the trail follows alongside a fence with stiles placed at intervals.  These stiles are there to allow walkers to cross into the adjoining field in the event of there being a bull in the field.  The route continues on the farm access road past High Barnultoch Farm, across a public road [waymark No.8 - 5K) and generally southwards on quiet public roads for approximately 5 kilometers passing the farms of Barnultoch, Mosscroft, High Mye and Low Mye.  On reaching the B7084 public road [waymarker No.7 - 10K] the route enters Clayshant Quarry and continues to the coast.  Here the trail turns right and follows the shoreline to a bridge over Culmore Burn and onward behind and over the sand dunes passing Sands of Luce Holiday Park to cross Sandmill Burn bridge and continue to Sandhead Village [waymarker  No.6 - 14K].  There is a general provisions shop, tearoom and hotel in Sandhead.

Through the village there are alternative routes depending on the state of the tide.  The alternatives are to continue on the shore, walk along the top of the concrete sea wall or proceed along the A716 public road to the track back down to the shoreline.  This latter route requires extreme care as there are no verges to walk on.  From here the trail follows the shoreline, crossing Cairnweil Burn bridge and briefly on the public road to pass behind Dye Mill Cottage.  At Ardwell Village [waymarker No.5 -19K] the route again follows the public road briefly before returning to pass through a car park/picnic area.  Approaching Chapel Rossan House the route crosses the public road at the entrance to Barhill Farm and proceeds along the field edge to cross back over the road into a small wood.  Turning right to pass through the wood the trail enters a field, emerging onto the access road to Longrigg Cottage.  The route turns left here and follows the access road to a waymarker on the left verge before turning right into Longrigg Plantation where the trail drops steeply, turns right through the wood and then left on to the shoreline.  Crossing Logan Mill bridge [waymarker No.4 - 22K] and continuing on  the shoreline the trail passes through New England Bay Caravan Site and over Terally Burn road bridge before crossing the A716 public road at the entrance to Kirkbride Farm [waymarker No.3 - 26K].

Passing through a kissing gate and turning left the route passes through Greenan Plantation and up to a kissing gate and access road where it turns left following the access road down to and across the A716 public road.  From here the trail follows the seaward side verge of the public road to the outskirts of Drummore Village where it veers left down to the harbour [waymarker No.2 - 30K].  There is a general provisions shop, tearoom and hotel in Drummore.

Continuing round the harbour to Cailliness Road the route follows the shoreline to Maryport Caravan Site [waymarker No.1 - 33K]. From the caravan site the route follows the coastline before climbing to the top of the slope and proceeds along the seaward side of the fence line before dropping back to the coast line to cross the Kirk Burn on a small sleeper bridge.  Continuing round the coastline the route then climbs up to a drystone dyke which is crossed by means of a step ladder and then followed southwards.  On reaching East Tarbet Bay the trail drops down and climbs back up to the seaward side of a fence which continues along the top of a slope to reach a wall.  Here the route now passes through a gate and climbs steeply up to the Mull of Galloway car park and trail end [38.6K or 24 miles].  There is a cafe and RSPB information/exhibition at the Mull of Galloway.

Route -  Mull of Galloway to Stranraer

The route is approximately south to north and follows the east coast line of the Mull of Galloway peninsula.  The distances listed here with the waymarker numbers are approximate and are from the Mull of Galloway.

Looking at the lighthouse from the Mull of Galloway car park the route commences by following the wall to the left (eastward) down to a fence where it passes through a gate and turns left (northwards) continuing on the seaward side of the fence dropping down into East Tarbet Bay and climbing back up to follow along the line of the cliff-top dyke.  On reaching the Kirk Burn the route crosses a small sleeper bridge and then climbs up to the top of the slope to follow the fence line before dropping down to shore level and continuing to Maryport Caravan Site [waymarker No.1 - 6K]

Keeping to the coastline the trail enters Drummore Village via Cailiness Road, follows round the harbour [waymarker No.2 - 9K] and leaves via Shore Street.  There is a general provisions shop, tearoom and hotel in Drummore.

Continuing on the footpath at Clashwhannan Caravan Site the route now keeps to the east verge of the A716 public road for 1   kilometers before crossing over onto the access road at Grennan Farm.  Following the access road uphill the route turns first right, then through a kissing gate on the right before dropping down to pass through Grennan Plantation to emerge through a further kissing gate and back across the A716 public road to the seaward side [waymarker No.3 - 13K].

Keeping to the seaward side of the road the trail continues along the coastline crossing Terally Bridge and passing through New England Bay Caravan Site to cross the bridge at Logan Mill [waymarker No.4 - 17K].

Following the coastline for a further one kilometer the trail turns left to enter Longrigg Plantation continuing north before climbing steeply to meet the access road to Longrigg Cottage where it turns left.  The route continues on the access road to a kissing gate on the right giving access to a fenced off section of a field and onward through a further kissing gate to a small wood.  At the north end of the wood the route crosses the A716 public road, turns right through a bridle gate in a field and follows the field edge before emerging through a kissing gate onto the Barhill Farm access road and back across the public road to the seaward side.  Following the coast for a short distance into a car park/picnic area [waymarker No.5 - 20K] the route passes through the village of Ardwell on the footway beside the public road.

Once through the village the trail returns to the shoreline for a further two kilometers before rejoining the road verge to pass behind Dye Mill Cottage and back down to the shoreline.  Shortly after passing over the Cairnwiel Burn bridge the route to be followed depends on the state of the tide.  The alternatives are, to continue on the shore, walk along the top of the concrete sea wall or follow the track on the left upwards to the public road where extreme care is required as there are no verges to walk on.  The route continues along the shoreline of Sandhead Village where there is a general provisions shop, a tea room and a hotel [waymarker No.6 - 25K].

The route proceeds northwards along the coast, crossing Sandmill Burn at the Sands of Luce Holiday Park and over and behind the sand dunes to cross Culmore Burn and into Clayshant Quarry.  Continuing along the coast the route enters an area of whin bushes where it turns left to make its way inland and out of the quarry [waymarker No.7 - 29K].

Crossing the B7084 public road the route now follows quiet public roads northwards for the next five kilometers, passing the farms of Low Mye, High Mye, Mosscroft and Barnultoch to enter the access road to High Barnultoch Farm [waymarker No.8 - 34K].

Passing through a kissing gate the trail follows a fence line with stiles placed at intervals.  These stiles are there to allow walkers to cross into the adjoining field in the event of there being a bull in the field.  The route now enters a small wood with kissing gates at the entry and exit points.  Continuing along a fence line and through a kissing gate the trail emerges onto a public road where it turns right and then left onto a track through a wood [waymarker No.9 - 36K].

Following this track for approximately two kilometers and crossing a public road after one and a half kilometers the route emerges on to a residential cul-de-sac (Westwood Avenue).  It continues to cross trunk road A75 into Ladies Walk and on to the A77 trunk road.  To finish, the trail turns left and continues over the railway bridge to the Tourist Information Office in Harbour Street [38.6 K or 24 miles].

Membership of International Appalachian Trail: (www.iat-sia.com)

This path now forms part of the International Appalachian Trail with its origin in the United States of America.   As well as cultural links, Scotland shares an older geological heritage with America, having been close neighbours on ancient continents, sharing in the creation of the Caledonian and Appalachian mountain chains and only separated by the opening of the North Atlantic Ocean.  This long distance walking route runs from the northern terminus of the Appalachian Trail at Katahdin, Maine, and northwards into Canada's Maritime Provinces to Newfoundland.   Using the link between geology and tourism the trail has been extended to include Ireland and Scotland, encompassing the Mull of Galloway Trail, Loch Ryan Coastal Path and beyond. In addition to health and fitness, the International Appalachian Trail promotes environmental stewardship, natural and cultural heritage, cross-border co-operation, and rural economic development through adventure tourism.

This leaflet has been prepared by the Rotary Club of Stranraer which gratefully acknowledges the support and consent of the landowners and tenants whose lands the path occupies, as well as the contributions from the following:

Dumfries & Galloway Council (Access Officers and Criminal Justice Department), Bobby McMillan & Barr Quarries Limited

 Funding-

The total cost was £100,000 with funding of £50,000 agreed through the Dumfries and Galloway LEADER Programme

Matched funding was received as follows:-

Awards for All Scotland                                       £10,000

The Robertson Trust                                           £8,000

Stranraer and District Local History Trust             £ 7,000

Dumfries & Galloway Council (in kind)                 £15,000

The Rotary Club of Stranraer (in kind)                  £10,000

The Club is very grateful for the funding support.

              

THIS PROJECT WAS PART-FINANCED BY THE SCOTTISH GOVERNMENT AND THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITY, DUMFRIES AND GALLOWAY LEADER 2007 2013 PROGRAMME.

 ALL WALKERS USING THE TRAIL DO SO AT THEIR OWN RISK AND ARE EXPECTED TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THEIR OWN ACTIONS, THE WELFARE OF LIVESTOCK AND WILDLIFE AND AVOID DAMAGE TO CROPS -  ALL IN KEEPING WITH THE SCOTTISH OUTDOOR ACCESS CODE