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This is a great short walk for an introduction to the windfarm if it is your first visit. The wooden huts found in the middle of the walk make a good viewpoint on a clear day and a nice spot for a picnic. This is a “there and back” route with a total distance of 1.2 miles / 2km.
Parking available at Whitelee Windfarm Visitor Centre (G76 0QQ)
Route: From Whitelee Visitor Centre follow the road back down to the information board. Turn right (South) to go through the barrier and downhill to Turbine 40 . Turn left (East) here and after 280m when you reach a sign for the mountain bike trails, turn right (South) towards some little wooden huts up on the hill. Return via same route.
WALK REVIEW: 4th January 2016
I have been to Whitelee many times in the past – when my boys were babies I took both of them to the stroller/striders group they ran every Tuesday morning. I loved that it was somewhere ‘different’ to come a walk – I felt a world away from home, and the air was always FRESH!! I remember feeling a little crazy at the time because I would literally be there rain, hail or shine whereas most people preferred to wait for the dry sunny days. At least the Ranger could always count on at least 1 mum & buggy turning up for the walk :-)
Check out my 2 minutes of fame recorded one sunny Summer morning in 2013 for the Paths for All charity! Sadly I had to stop going once Nathan started nursery as I couldn’t make it back home in time to collect him.
Nathan was actually here a few weeks ago on a nursery trip so was excited to be back and took great pride in giving me all his knowledge on the turbines as we walked! Thomas appeared to have no prior memory of the place! Oh well…
The huts actually mark the start of the mountain bike trails and are a pretty new addition. In fact I had never been up to them before. They turned out to be brilliant! There are 5 in total and all face slightly different directions meaning you can find the one which shelters best against the wind. Each has a picnic bench inside.
Originally I had hoped we could walk a little further but I decided here would be far enough for them. Thomas was walking extremely slowly and despite neither of them complaining of being cold, I was feeling it! The sun was shining but it was bitter . Thank goodness we all had base layers on (which Thomas insisted on calling tights!!).
On setting off back to the car Thomas asked to be carried several times but the promise that we were nearly back and “look can you see the café over there, that’s where the end is” gave him false hope that there might be a hot soup or piece of cake at the end if he kept going. I feel slightly guilty that I suspected all along that it was closed but I didn’t tell him that…. :-o Back at the car, when he eventually realised that it was closed and mummy did not have a key to open the door I was not very popular!
On a side note, the visitor centre has the cleanest baby change facilities I have ever come across so I would definitely recommend a look around the exhibition and a visit to the cafe if they are open.
I love Whitelee. I love the open space and changeable weather and seeing so many others out with their dogs, kids and bikes. However next time I will definitely take the buggy for Thomas – today made me realise that my quest to build up his wee legs for longer walks has been a little premature: he is only 2 afterall, I am probably expecting too much…. I really really REALLY want to be able to take them hillwalking from a young age and know that my little sister was only 4 when she first climbed Ben Nevis and I guess I’ve been a bit carried away with wanting my boys to take a similar path. There is plenty of time ahead – I shall slow down :-)