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Drone image of harvesting site next to loch

The A82 project is removing non-native conifers along the Loch Ness to mitigate against future hill slips and protect this iconic road. Our contractors are currently working on an area four miles from Drumnadrochit.

We are currently removing mostly Douglas firs, which were planted on the hillside around 90-years-ago, making them some of the earliest plantings by the Forestry Commission in Scotland. These giant trees are now getting too large for the landscape and causing a potential risk to environmental stressors such as windfall. This creates a safety concern since the trees are located on a steep hillside over the loch and road. 

The Douglas firs are being replaced with a rich native natural woodland, which will be more sustainable for the future and will build more resilience into the hillside. The project, which started in 2012, will take up to 25 years to complete. This is due to the scale but also the complexity of the landscape and technical aspects of the project.

Current A82 site map

Who we're working with

This is a massive partnership program and it’s wouldn’t be possible without the ongoing effort and support from our geotechnical engineering consultants, emergency services, Transport Scotland, Traffic Scotland, Bear Scotland, Duffy Skylining and The Highland Council.

Site safety 

Traffic management

Safety is our number one priority for this project, therefore we are using red-to-red traffic management systems to stop the flow of traffic while we are felling and removing trees from the site. 

This will cause delays around the site, for real-time travel information you can visit Traffic Scotland.

Safety fencing

Due to the steepness of the hillside and the geological make-up of the landscape we have installed large safety fences along the site. These are in place to catch any falling rocks or debris, which may come loose during the harvesting operations.

Steep ground felling

Large-scale harvesting operations have been underway above the A82 since the start of the 2013. The initial operations started at Glen Righ (south of Fort William). 

We are currently working south of Drumnadrochit at a site called Barksheds. Skyline extraction is being used to compensate for the steep terrain the trees are located on. This highly technical forestry technique uses industrial cables to remove trees from the hillside.

Learn more about the different forestry techniques at this site

Photos of the site

Related documents

Get in touch

If you have any questions about the A82 project, please contact:

Keith Black
Forestry and Land Scotland
Tower Road


Phone: 0300 0676100
For media enquiries, contact our press office on 0131 370 5065.