Walk 141 – Brodick to Lamlash via Clauchlands Point (Isle of Arran) – 12 miles

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A circular walk starting and ending at Brodick ferry terminal. After a short stretch on quiet minor roads, follow the Arran Coastal Way around Clauchlands Point to Lamlash. Keep a look out for seals! From here a short steep ascent takes you onto a wide forestry track and back to Brodick via Glen Cloy. 

Print  Dog-friendly walk (two stiles to be aware of, and one short field crossing which had horses at time of my visit – see photos)

  This route is designed to be walked from the ferry terminal without the need for other transport. However if you have a car, on-street parking is available in Brodick.

Brodick to Lamlash

WALK REPORT: 12th June 2017

One of those walks which had been pre-planned months in advance to accommodate three different people’s schedules! Of course, as the date approached it became clear that it was to be pouring of rain all day and so with that in mind I arrived at Ardrossan ferry terminal in full waterproofs and hiking gear.  Imagine my surprise then when my walking companion turned up in shorts and trail shoes! We couldn’t have looked more different and I even joked if we were going to the same place. He was to be the one laughing by the end of the day however, as the clouds lifted to reveal blue sky and warm sunshine. Ah well, first outing for my new jacket and it stood up well to the initial drenching we got!

Unfortunately one member of the group had to cancel (we missed you Salima!) and so Gleb and I set off to discover what Arran’s coastal path had to offer. It was only Gleb’s second time on the island (the first being our Glen Rosa walk a year prior) and he was quite keen to change plans and attempt Goatfell again, however much to his disappointment I wasn’t up for it: A combination of a VERY choppy ferry crossing, the poor weather and the fact that I had been up that mountain countless times… sorry Gleb! Another time for sure 😉  Just to tease him we were treated to a lovely view of said mountain from Brodick as we awaited the ferry home later in the day!

Goatfell seen from Brodick

I have Dougie Russell to thank for this route! He had kindly plotted it out on a mapping app for me, making navigation super easy. There is nothing better than walking a route suggested by a ‘local’ (read ‘someone who has moved to the island in recent years and has a habit of posting photos from his walks on social media rendering me insanely jealous!’)  Can’t thank him enough for taking the time to plan this one out for me though, it was a cracker!

Part One: the coastal walk (my favourite!) Wet underfoot but beautiful, remote, rugged….. and we saw a seal! 

After an extremely wet start (and therefore very few photos) the cloud started to lift and the Clauchland Hills came into view. Atmospheric!
It was around this point that I looked out across the water to spot a seal bobbing up and down just beneath us! Since we could only see it’s head, it would have been too small for the camera to pick up so I just enjoyed the moment, taking in all it’s markings, until it disappeared underwater several minutes later. The path is very narrow along this section of the walk, traversing the hillside above the rocks . Looking at this photo you wouldn’t even know there was a path there at all!

Part two: around Clauchlands Point and through Lamlash village. 

Low cloud covered Holy Isle at this point so I didn’t even attempt any photos of it. On a clear day it would be stunning. Information boards around the bay explained that this area is Scotland’s first designated ‘No Take Zone’ to aid the regeneration of marine life in a one square mile area between Lamlash and Holy Isle. As villages go on the Isle of Arran, Lamlash is fairly big; in fact, and perhaps surprisingly, it is the island’s largest in terms of population (one would assume that Brodick would have that title)

Part three: the forestry and woodland tracks returning to Brodick. 

I don’t normally like forestry tracks much, I get bored of them quickly. I was grateful that this one wasn’t too bad thanks to it’s elevated position which afforded lovely views down into Lamlash, across to Holy Isle and then later over to Cnoc Dubh (425m high and now on the to-do list!) All of this on a low-visibility day, remember!

The initial climb from the road up to the forestry track was steep and very boggy. I imagine in the recent past the trail would have run right up the edge of the forest, however with the trees having been cut back the ground now had no cover and the path ressembled a stream on the day of our visit.
This huge quarry was an unexpected find!
View across to A’ Chruach (514m) and Cnoc Dubh (425m). Further down the track we passed a Forestry Commission sign which indicated that the same track provides access to these hills. Interesting…… 😉
Could these horses be any more chilled?! The route crossed this field to reach a woodland path behind the Auchrannie hotel from where we followed the main road through Brodick and back to the ferry terminal.

Arran has so much to offer the walker, I don’t even know where to begin deciding on the next one!  The 65-mile Arran Coastal Way is certainly on my list, and being a circular walk gives it extra brownie points. I will of course accompany Gleb up Goatfell at some point, as well as tackle all the other peaks the North of the island has to offer….. And I am sure my friend Dougie will have a few other suggestions for me too – remember that Guest Blog we mentioned back in June, Dougie?? hint hint 😉

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