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Venue: Sligachan

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Get yourself to Kyle then over the bridge to the Isle of Skye.Once over the bridge, follow the A87 heading to Portree. After 24 miles you'll arrive at Sligachan.

Click here to see a detailed map and information about any additional locations.
There's no village at Sligachan, just the hotel, a campsite, and a cracking view.

If you're just turning up to do the route and leave, there's plenty of car parking space available on sections of the old road, and an extended layby. Obviously the hotel and campsite have their own car parking.

The campsite is basic, but good enough, with clean showers and toilets. Take a good hammer and plenty of spare pegs though - in places theres about an inch of soil over the stones underneath.
The food at the hotel is fine, nothing too flashy, but it does the job. The bar is excellent. They also do breakfast if you're a lazy camper !

This place is midgie & cleg heaven, so if you're going between June to September ( ish ) take repellant and a net for your head.

In my own experience the best time to go is April or May, as there is usually an extended dry period of weather, so the route is quite dry ( it can get very boggy when wet ! ) and it's also pre-midgie season.

Trails at Sligachan


Trail TitleLength (Miles)Ascent (Mtrs)Time (Hrs)Tech GradeFitness Grade
Sligachan Circuit27.66207 Moderate Hard

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Comments and ratings for Sligachan Circuit
The out and back route from Sligachan is a nice balance of fast bits and technical bits (Measured distance to the coast 27km). A nice balance of fast bits and technical bits. It would only be better ... read whole comment...
medtheshed gave this trail 5 stars about 4 years ago
did the Sligachan section out & back from the campsite last week, great ride with some outstanding scenery and sense of wilderness. some great grippy rock slabs to ride up and down and a remote beach ... read whole comment...
gazc gave this trail 5 stars about 5 years ago
A 5 star route and next time I do it I will just do the Slig and back route.
wnc gave this trail 5 stars about 6 years ago
Did the Sligachan section as an out & back from the pub, which avoided the road & bog. Great ride!
kitebikeski gave this trail 5 stars about 6 years ago
Scenery is stunning on a good day! Personally didn't think much of the riding was worth the effort having done the full route. Nothing fun about section starting at luib. Don't waste your time or ener... read whole comment...
gjr84 gave this trail 2 stars about 7 years ago

Sligachan Circuit

Viewed 5793 times
Length: 27.6 Miles
Ascent: 620 m
Time: 7 hrs
Tech Grade: Moderate
Fitness Grade: Hard
Av. Trail Rating:
(9 votes so far)
This is a classic Scottish route, through some amazing scenery.

You can obviously choose to do this route clockwise as described here, or anti. I prefer the clockwise option as you can warm up on the road, it gets the road sections out of the way first, and if it's wet the Strath Mor section can be very boggy, so it gets this done early on too, all leaving the best bit to last ( Camasunary to Sligachan ).

There are other options for this route, such as an out and back from Sligachan to Camasunary back to Sligachan again ( from the start, directly south to Tag 10, then straight back north along the same route. ).
I've also done it one way from Sligachan south to Camasunary, to Kilmarie, then south along the road to Elgol to cars we'd left here the night before. The view from the bay at Elgol makes this option well worth considering if you can arrange transport.

Anyway - the full circuit goes like this. Starting at Sligachan, head east along the A87 towards Luib at Tag 3. This is roughly an hour of road cycling. You have the option of dropping off the road at the top of Gleann Torra-mhichaig at Tag 1, and getting a section of off road downhill to the old singletrack road. This isn't a fast flowing downhill, it's rough, rocky, boggy, and slippy, but it's not tarmac ! You can get in another little section off road by cutting off the final bend in the singletrack road before it rejoins the A87 at Tag 2. Turn left onto the road again.

Cut off the A87 onto the old road just before Luib, and head for Tag 3, where you take to the hills at last.

The section from Tag 3 to Tag 7 through Strath Mor can be very wet. I'm fortunate enough to have been there when it's been dry for a few weeks beforehand, but still found a few places where the bike got plugged. It's also a bit techy near the start. The trail in general is a mix of rock, hardpacked stone / kitty litter, and peat.
In the section from Tags 4 to 5 the path seems to fade away, or I managed to lose it at least ! Halfway along Lochain Stratha Mhoir it led me to the shoreline and onto some sand before it disappeared. You can see the other path on the east side of the loch though ( it's on the satellite view, but not the OS map ) so it's just a case of picking a point on that path and heading for it.
From Tags 5 to 7 the path gets a lot better, with only the odd peatbog section. The path did seem to disappear again at the next little loch at Tag 6, but the earth/gravel shoreline is hardpacked enough to ride along it. We rode a lot of it in the loch !

At Tag 7, say hello to the tarmac again. Turn right and head along the B8083 to Kilmarie. To Tag 9 it's about 2.5 miles of singletrack road.

At Tag 9 you finally leave the tarmac for good, by taking the path up the hill to the high point at Am Mam ( Tag 10 ). This is a steady climb at first, over a hardpacked trail, but the higher you get, the more rocky it becomes, a lot of it loose and difficult to cycle on, especially on the steeper sections. Be prepared to push / carry, but it's all just about to get very much better. You'll see some jagged peaks sticking up beyond the top of Am Mam ahead of you, giving you a hint of the view you're about to get.

When you top out at Tag 10, the view that opens up in front of you is amazing. Camas Fhionnairigh Bay and the route back to Sligachan up Srath na Creitheach, with the Black Cuillin as a backdrop will take what breath you have left away.

When you've stopped gawping and picked your chin up, head down the other side of Am Mam to Tag 11 at Camasunary. There is a lot of loose rock / rubble on this descent, so it's worth being a bit careful as you're in a pretty remote location when you get to the bottom of the descent.

Tag 11 to the finish is the highlight of the route. The singletrack trail is hardpacked and rocky, and all rideable. A bit technical here and there too. There are a few muddy bits which will doubtless be tougher if its wet though. Although you're basically going from sea level to a high point back to sea level again, it's over such a distance that you hardly notice the climb.
You won't fail to notice the scenery though, the mountains on either side are stunning.

From Tag 12 to the finish there are a few drainage ditches constructed across the path, most of which can be jumped or hopped. There are some that are more like chasm's though, so be prepared to stop if you're not that confident about hopping them.
There's the odd one right on a tight bend on the trail as well which you've got no chance on - unless you're prepared to hop off the trail into the grass/rocks/peat right in front of you while the path does a 90 degree turn below you !

The final run out from Tag 12 to the finish is helped by the gentle downhill gradient to the pub in the distance.

You've just finished a 28 mile route through some stunning scenery, right at a pub. Work out the rest.................

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