Coo Palace

Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland

Walk 15 - Glen Trool Loop walking and hiking route

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Walk Instructions

Start: At the Glen Trool visitor centre car park (pay & display) about 10 miles north of Newton Stewart.
Refreshments: Seasonal visitor centre café in Glen Trool. House o’ Hill Hotel at Bargrennan, Cafes and pubs in Newton Stewart

A walk around the valley of the Water of Trool in Galloway Forest Park.

1. The walk starts from the Glen Trool visitor centre car park. From the visitor centre, follow the yellow waymarked track that leads uphill through the forest. This is a working forest so the route of the trails may be subject to change depending on logging and forest management activities. The trail winds through the forest mainly contouring along the valley sides and passes above Stroan House. You will cross the Torr Lane burn at a bridge below the small waterfall of Spout Head. The path now descends to meet the surfaced road along Glen Trool just opposite the forest track that leads to Caldons car park and the Water of Trool.

2. Cross the bridge over the Water of Trool and follow the waymarked Southern Upland Way path. A few hundred yards downstream from the car park you will come to the Covenanters’ Grave.

3. An inscribed stone inside a square walled area marks the communal grave of six Covenanters who were killed by soldiers while they were holding a service in Caldoris Wood in January 1685. The Covenanters were Scottish Presbyterians who refused to accept the Episcopalian system introduced by King Charles I, which demanded they sign an oath of allegiance to the King rather than God. The late 1600s were known as the ‘Killing Times’ when many Covenanters died for their beliefs. The path now takes a pleasant route meandering alongside the Water of Trool for about a mile until you reach a footbridge that leads rightwards across the river.

4. There are good views of the hills that surround Glen Trool. To the south east, Craignaw sits in front of the higher peaks of Larg and Lamachan Hills. Bennan and Buchan Hill can be seen to the north east. The Water of Trool meets the Water of Minnoch soon after the bridge. Follow the Water of Minnoch northwards through forest to return to the visitor centre.

5. There are some impressive rapids and waterfalls in the final section of the river before Stroan Bridge. If you follow the river a little further northwards from the visitor centre you will discover a pair of Rosnes Benches tucked away in the rocks by the river.

6. The Rosnes Benches are an art project that has placed sets of two or three elliptical grey “benches” in a dozen secluded places around the Galloway Forest Park. The benches are intended to encourage you to pause and appreciate the surrounding countryside, absorbing the sounds and sights at each location. You can lie on them to look at the tree canopy or the clouds or just sit and relax and enjoy the view at each location. You can find more information about their locations at the Rosnes Bench website.

It would be a great help to future walkers if you could record any inaccuracies you come across during this walk and report them to reception so that appropriate amendments can be made. Thank you for your help. Happy walking.

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Disclaimer: This route was correct at time of writing. However, alterations can happen if development or boundary changes occur, and there is no guarantee of permanent access. These walks have been published for use by site visitors on the understanding that neither HPB Management Limited nor any other person connected with Holiday Property Bond is responsible for the safety or wellbeing of those following the routes as described. It is walkers' own responsibility to be adequately prepared and equipped for the ‎level of walk and the weather conditions and to assess the safety and accessibility of the walk.

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