This walk takes you from Drymen along the West Highland Way through Garadbhan Forest towards Conic Hill, descending to Milton of Buchanan and returning via Buchanan Castle grounds.
The ruined country house, Buchanan Castle, was built c1852. The house replaced Mugdock Castle as the official seat of Clan Graham. Sold in 1925 it was used as a hospital during the Second World War. The roof was removed in 1954 which accelerated its deterioration.
The walk takes you through the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park which covers some of Scotland’s most-loved locations including Ben Lomond. Conic Hill, with a summit at at 361m, sits above Balmaha. On a good day it provides an excellent viewpoint.
Take your favourite route towards Bearsden Cross then follow the A811, then B858, to Drymen. In Drymen turn right at the Green into Stirling Road and the car park is a couple of hundred metres on the right. From Glasgow it’s about 17 miles and should take about 35 minutes by car.
Start at OS Reference NS 475 886 which is the car park in Stirling Road, Drymen.
The Walk: Drymen and Garadhban Forest- 9.0 miles
Turn right from the car park and continue along Stirling Road to the sign for the West Highland Way (WHW). Turn left and then follow the WHW until leaving the Garadhban Forest. There are fine views here of Conic Hill and across Loch Lomond. Next, reverse the outward route for about half a mile until a cross roads. Turn right and walk past Creity Hall (just a farmhouse) down to the main road at Milton of Buchanan. Turn left onto the B837 and after crossing a bridge turn right at a way-mark sign onto the ‘Gort Daraich Walk’. Then turn left towards Buchanan Old House and skirt most of the housing at Buchanan Castle. Having left the housing behind turn left towards Buchanan Home Farm. Just before the farm turn right onto a track/minor road through woodland to emerge on the B858. Turn left and head north towards The Square, Stirling Road and the car park.