Reminder of access impact as Leanachan North Face works begin
Forestry and Land Scotland is reminding forest visitors that forestry operations will begin in Leanachan Forest (near Fort William) from this week.
There are two distinct phases of work. From May ’22 civil engineering works that will allow harvesting work later in the year will cause significant disruption to visitors on the roads.
The harvesting – which will begin in September and continue until March 2023 – will affect access to the whole forest but will particularly impact on the Torlundy /North Face area.
David John Robertson, FLS Area Visitor Services Manager, said;
“We are reminding visitors that we are about to start a substantial amount of work at Leanachan and that in order to keep everyone safe there will be temporary closures and controlled, timed access as operations progress.
“There will be a lot of heavy machinery on site and much of the work will be hazardous so it is vital that anyone coming to the forest follows all safety signage and heeds any instructions from bankspersons.
“And with all that heavy machinery going to and from the work areas, roadsides on the approaches will need to be kept free so there will be very limited parking at the North Face Car Park. Visitors can instead make use of the car parking at Nevis Range and in Fort William.
“All the operations will be Monday-Friday but all signage, detours and closures will be in effect seven days a week. Just because we are not actually working on site doesn’t mean that the site is less dangerous.
“We apologise in advance for any inconvenience this will cause."
As well as the thinning of conifer trees over a large portion of the upper sections of forest, there will also be timber harvesting and subsequent haulage.
Civil engineering works will be required to enable the harvesting and thinning, and will include flailing, ditching, the widening and resurfacing of forest roads and some preliminary minor tree felling to enable these works.
Periods of planned work include:
- May to June – Civil Engineering works Torlundy to North Face forest roads (Map 2)
- July to August – Civil Engineering works MacKenzies Road (Map 2)
- Sept to January 23 – Harvesting and ongoing haulage (Map 1)
- Jan to March 23’ – Civil Engineering repairs and reinstatements. (Map 2)
- March 23’ – North Face car park redesign works commence (Indicative date)
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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.