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Forestry and Land Scotland will begin tree felling operations next week on the steepest part of the hillside at Loch Ness-side.

Part of FLS’ long-term steep ground felling work along the length of the A82, the next phase of work, which will run from April until the end of June, will see large trees being removed from a slope that in places is 80-90 per cent sheer.

FLS Planning Manager Ian Allsop, said;

“This is without question the most challenging phase of the work that we have undertaken.

“Harvesting is generally a hazardous business. Factor-in bad weather and it becomes trickier still. But add to that some incredibly steep ground and you are faced with a job that needs to be done slowly, with exceptional attention to detail and by people who are absolutely at the top of their game.

“Safety precautions are always in place and of the highest standard no matter where on the hillside we have been working.

“This continues to hold true for the work our team will be doing over the next few months. However, the only thing that will affect road-users will be the ongoing traffic management, which is a key element of our safety measures.”

The latest phase of forestry operations – again between Drumnadrochit and Invermoriston – is the first time this year that FLS and its specialist contractor, Duffy Skylining, will have carried out felling work on site.

Delays to the programme have arisen because of bad weather, safety inspections and work to stabilise the hillside.

The felling will clear the mature conifer from the steep hillside to make way for the establishment of native woodland which will be more sustainable for the future and will build more resilience into the hillside.

The 100 year-old conifers need to be felled because they are at increasing risk of windblow and are of such a size – 50m tall and weighing 10-12 tonnes – that they could cause significant damage to infrastructure were they to be blown over in a storm.

Further information on the Steep Ground Felling programme can be found online. 

Notes to editors

  1. Forestry and Land Scotland (FLS) manages forests and land owned by Scottish Ministers in a way that supports and enables economically sustainable forestry; conserves and enhances the environment; delivers benefits for people and nature; and supports Scottish Ministers in their stewardship of Scotland's national forests and land.

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  3. Media enquiries to Neil Ratley, Media Manager, Forestry and Land Scotland Media Office 07748 872 785 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.