Dec 2017: NOTE THAT THIS ROUTE IS CURRENTLY INACCESSIBLE DUE TO BRIDGE CLOSURES WITHIN THE BIG WOOD. NO ETA FOR COMPLETION OF REMEDIAL WORK
This is an easy walk through (sometimes muddy) woodland and then onto minor roads before returning to the start through the village of Newmilns. Go in the month of May to experience the thousands of bluebells!
Dog-friendly walk (a shorter 1 mile off-lead walk is possible by following the footpath through the woods until it starts to peter out at the top of the hill then re-tracing your steps back to the start. Still a very nice walk and lots of little paths to explore inside the woodland)
Download the route to your mobile phone HERE (Viewranger app required)
Car parking available in lay-by at Hag Bridge, just past the golf course on A71
Route: From the lay-by there is a way marker pointing into the trees which indicates the start of the walk. The footpath continues through Big Wood, crossing Hag Burn in 3 places before veering off to the right and onto a minor road at Woodhead Cottage. Continue straight until the road crosses Huggin Craig Burn and bends to the right and becomes Huggin Craig Road. At the bottom of the road turn left onto Borebrae then right onto Kilnholm Street and finally onto A71/Loudoun Road which will take you back to the car park.
18th May 2016
This walk had been on my radar for some time now, for 2 reasons: firstly it had been recommended to me by someone who lives in the area and is a great supporter of my website, and secondly my mum had read that the Big Wood is the place to be in the month of May if you want to see the bluebells in bloom.
The weather on this day hadn’t been the best however trusting my weather app which told me it was to clear up late evening, I managed to convince my mum that tonight was the night. So off we went. At first the rain held off but as we reached the end of the woodland (where we were most sheltered!) down it came. Needless to say it stayed on for the remainder of the walk and as we were out in the open we got soaked…. I am sure my mum must have been thinking ‘I knew this was a bad idea…‘ 🙂
I think I can say we both still really enjoyed the walk, I certainly did. I will definitely go back and do it again on a dryer day. The view down into the valley must be magnificent on a clear day when you can take the time to stop and appreciate it. The bluebells were indeed in bloom as promised, thousands of them. The woodland floor was a sea of blue in some places, very pretty.