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Winding Walks

Where we are

Winding Walks Forest Notice

The gazebo at Peeps View viewpoint is not accessible at the present time due to structural issues. Please obey all signage at the site. Apologies for any inconvenience during the closure of the structure.

 

Meander a maze of trails through the pines

The 'winding walks' are a maze of trails through the 19th century gardens of the Duke and Duchess of Gordon. Meander through open pinewoods to find striking viewpoints and monuments, or enjoy a secluded picnic beside a secret loch. Watch out for capercaillie as you explore Whiteash Wood. This is one of the few places left in the north east of Scotland where these iconic forest birds still live.

You can find out about the history of Fochabers, and the Duke and Duchess' association with the historic Gordon Chapel, at the nearby Folk Museum in Fochabers.

Our guide to Moray's forests (PDF 2.5MB)

Walking trails

Walking

Peeps View Trail

A short loop through the forest to the gazebo tucked among the pines at Peeps Viewpoint. Enjoy impressive views over Fochabers and Strath Spey.

Wide, uneven gravel and earth surface. Some exposed tree roots and potentially muddy patches. Long moderate slopes with some fairly steep sections. Includes short flight of steps up to viewpoint.

Moderate
1 ½ miles / 2.3 km

Allow
1 hour

Walking

Small Burn Loop

Skirt around the towering firs, pines and cypresses of the 19th century woodland garden along Small Burn.

Mostly wide, firm but uneven gravel surface. Long moderate slopes for half a mile with some steeper parts.

Moderate
1 ½ miles / 2.4 km

Allow
1 hour

More information

This circuit above the Small Burn’s dramatic steep-sided glen features a variety of exotic conifers planted by the Duke of Gordon 200 years ago. For an adventurous variation, follow the signs from the trail to the Winding Walks themselves – rugged, narrow paths designed by the Duke that criss-cross the gully below.

Walking

Secret Loch Way

Wander through the pinewoods to find secluded Longhowe Loch, a former curling pond that is a great place to picnic.

Wide, firm but uneven gravel and grassy surface. Some exposed tree roots. Long moderate slopes for 500m with fairly steep sections.

Moderate
1 ¾ miles / 3.0 km

Allow
1 hour

More information

Relax beside the loch and look out for woodland birds. Can you spot bat roosting boxes in the trees? Bats love lochs like this, where they feed on the insects zooming around over the water.

Walking

Monument Trail

Climb through the forest to the noble cairn erected on Whiteash Hill in memory of the Duchess of Richmond. There are wonderful views across the Moray Firth.

Uneven gravel surface with slightly rocky, grassy and muddy parts. Long moderate slopes for over half a mile with some fairly steep sections. Includes some exposed tree roots.

Moderate
3 miles / 4.9 km

Allow
2 hours

More information

The longest of the trails at Winding Walks, this scenic route follows the edge of the Small Burn glen before joining narrower paths to reach the top of Whiteash Hill. Stand at the distinctive pyramidal monument and enjoy stunning views north to the mountains of Sutherland.

Activities

Time to hit the trails

Mountain bikers – the Monster Trails start here! Gear up for two of the more challenging Monster Trails, which start at the car park. For easier trails, try the blue graded Monster routes at nearby Ordiequish.

Facilities & access

Parking (charge)
Parking (charge)
Picnic area
Picnic area

Car parking

Parking charges are as follows:

  • £1 for up to 1 hour
  • £1.50 for up to 3 hours
  • £2 for all day
  • £8 for minibus and coach all day

Season passes are also available. For more information please contact us.

Getting here

From Fochabers, follow the A98 east towards Buckie for about 1 mile (2km). The Winding Walks car park is on the right.

Using SatNav?

IV32 7PG is the nearest postcode.

Public transport

The nearest railway station is at Keith. Regular buses link the towns and villages along the A96 between Inverness and Aberdeen – Fochabers is the nearest stop. You’ll find service details at Traveline Scotland.

Get directions

Get in touch

Have a question or suggestion for improvement?

Phone
0300 067 6380 (option 2)
More contact information

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