Wednesday, 18 May 2022
Tweed Valley Osprey Project Co-ordinator, Di Bennett, brings us the latest update from the nest....
The Kirroughtree Wheel bridge is currently closed for maintenance. Trail diversions are in place.
Whatever the season, there's always something to see and do at Kirroughtree. Even at night, when the stars put on a show!
Relax in the visitor centre, enjoy the view and fuel up for the trails. Wander to the Wild Watch Hide to spot red squirrels and birds, or meander to Bruntis Loch. There's adventure play, mountain bike trails and quiet forest roads for gentle family cycles.
A short path to the Wild Watch Hide, where squirrels and woodland birds visit the feeders. Continue further along the path to find Kirroughtree’s second play park.
A firm and generally flat path, with some short gentle gradients. No obstacles. Good in all weathers.
Allow 30 mins
Follow this trail through mature woods to the stunning viewpoint at the Galloway Forest Park 50th Anniversary Cairn, then back past the tranquil Bruntis Loch.
Firm gravel paths with some wide forest roads. Generally moderate gradients. Includes a bridge. Shares some sections with mountain bike trails – look out for bikers.
Allow 1 hour
This path visits both the Big and Little Bruntis Lochs, before heading through mixed woodland with beautiful big beech trees. Keep your eyes open for the workings of the historic tin mines, as well as roe deer and red squirrels.
A firm gravel path. Fairly steep gradients. Includes a short section (100m) on quiet public road.
Allow 1½ hours
A scenic circuit around wooded Larg Hill rewards you with great views over Newton Stewart, a visit to lovely Bruntis Loch and follows the course of a tumbling burn.
Firm gravel paths and forest roads, with some sections muddy after rain. Long fairly steep gradients. Includes short section of quiet public road. Shares some sections with mountain bike trails.
Allow 3 hours
In spring watch out for great spotted woodpeckers nesting close to the roadside – look for tell-tale round holes in dead treetrunks where they nest and bring up their young. Listen for the adults drumming (rapid pecking) in the trees – this is the woodpecker’s way of advertising for a mate and marking its territory.
Kirroughtree is one of the world class 7stanes mountain bike venues. It features a superb variety of green, blue and red graded trails, an extreme downhill section for the serious experts, and a skills area for honing your technique.
This small set of trails is an ideal warm up for your ride or, if you are new to mountain biking, they’ll give you a taste of the type of trail features you'll find at Kirroughtree.
You’ll find a lot packed into this small section of trails, where you can practise for the more difficult obstacles you might meet on our longer routes. It’s the best place to perfect your technique before you get down to serious business.
Take an easy ride through the scenic Bargaly Glen.
The perfect route for first timers or children. Enjoy a relaxing ride through the mixed woodland of Bargaly Glen along farm tracks and quiet public roads.
Great if you are looking for something with a bit of added excitement. Offers some beautiful views and the option of the Doon Hill extension.
Ideal for beginners or kids who are confident on their bikes, this winding route is mainly singletrack with a couple of small rock drops thrown in for good measure.
A technically testing and physically demanding trail.
The trail is diverted just after Talnotry Hill between post 65 and 66. This cuts out the boardwalk section (where we're doing some maintenance). The diversion takes you along the county road to the top of Corwar road end.
Black Craigs combines fast flowing singletrack and rocky technical features to test your skills. A highlight is McMoab, with its huge slabs and ridges of exposed granite linked by boulder causeways.
From the fast flowing single track to the testing rocky technical challenges, on the Black Craigs you’ll find plenty of exposed granite and features to get your adrenaline pumping.
To reach the start of Black Craigs, follow the red-graded Twister trail to its half-way point.
Kirroughtree is brimming with wildlife. Explore the visitor centre to discover what lives in the trees, waterways, open hills - and even high in the trees! It’s a short distance from the centre to the Wild Watch Hide, where you might catch red squirrels and woodland birds feeding. You might even spot roe deer.
The play park at Kirroughtree is a great place for the kids to burn off some energy, and there are several trails suitable for little legs and pushchairs. You could also try out our orienteering trail – work as a team or compete against each other.
Scotland has some of the darkest skies in Europe, and Galloway Forest Park is one of the darkest places in Scotland – which is why it’s the UK’s first Dark Sky Park. Kirroughtree is a brilliant place to enjoy the night sky – look out for information panels at the visitor centre which will help you spot the stars.
There’s great fishing in the Forest Park, including brown trout and pike. You can buy a permit at any of the visitor centres for Loch Braden, Loch Dee, Black Loch, Spectacle Loch, or Garwachie.
National Cycle Route 7 (Glasgow to Carlisle via Dumfries and Glen Trool) also winds through the Forest Park, linking Kirroughtree with the other two visitor centres here. You might not want to tackle the whole 200 miles, but get a taste of the experience on scenic stretches of the route.
Daily: 10am to 5pm
The charges to park at Kirroughtree are:
Payment options: Card or coin
We recommend you bring both coins and cards with you in case our machine is having an off-day. Please park with care and consideration. In particular please park in designated parking areas only and do not block entrances or gates. Nearby car parks with free parking can be found in our local forest list without the £ symbol.
Annual parking passes available:
Blue badge holders park free. Please display your Blue Badge clearly.
Bikes can be hired from the The Break Pad bike shop. You can book your bike online before you visit. The shop also offers repairs, safety checks and friendly advice.
The bike shop is open Tues - Sun 10am - 5pm
Dogs are welcome in the visitor centre and café.
Motorhomes and campervans that are self-contained and have their own toilet facilities will be able to stay overnight at this car park from 1 April – 31 October 2022.
To help plan your stay, please see the details below:
Please visit our Stay the Night page for full details, participating locations, best practice, and terms and conditions of use.
Kirroughtree Visitor Centre is well signposted from the A75 at Palnure, about 1.5 miles east of Newton Stewart.
DG8 7BE is the nearest postcode. Despite what your satnav may suggest, we strongly recommend you stay on the A75 until Palnure and turn off to the visitor centre there.
There are regular buses between Dumfries and Stranraer, via Newton Stewart and Gatehouse of Fleet. Get off at Palnure and follow the signs to the visitor centre – it's about 1 mile (2 km) away on foot. Plan your journey at Traveline Scotland.
Peaceful forest roads with fine views over Newton Stewart
An old oak woodland that's a haven for wildlife