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Venue: Bennachie

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Venue Type:
No. of Trails: 6
Facilities:
Car Park
Toilets
Location:-
From Chapel of Garioch, continue to the Rowantree car park to the North-East of Bennachie.

Click here to see a detailed map and information about any additional locations.
Description:-
Bennachie is an iconic local hill with its distinctive ‘Mither Tap’ being a recognisable landmark for anyone in the area. Contrary to appearances ‘Oxen Craig’ is actually Bennachie’s highest point (at 528m) not ‘Mither Tap’ (which is 518m).

The Rowantree car park is a long stretch of tarmac with space for quite a few cars. Public toilets are provided at the west end of the car park. As Bennachie is a very popular destination for hill walkers, dog walkers, and others, the car park is often quite busy.


Trails at Bennachie

Summary


Trail TitleLength (Miles)Ascent (Mtrs)Time (Hrs)Tech GradeFitness Grade
Neep - Rowantree6.85572 Hard Hard
Bennachie circular15.46073 Moderate Moderate
Bennachie up and over10.55161.5 Moderate Moderate
Bennachie Circular Two13.45702.5 Moderate Moderate
Round Millstone5.82381.5 Easy Easy
Bennachie Loop10.97833 Hard Hard

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Comments and ratings for Neep - Rowantree
andymay73 gave this trail 4 stars about 5 years ago
There are many other top notch link ups to be done round here, just takes a bit of sussing out to work out your favourite combo!
portydave gave this trail 5 stars about 5 years ago
Did this ride last night. Absolutely love it! Technical interesting climbing all the way up, and 100% of the down is on interesting singletrack. No fireroads, no boring bits. Top stuff for a quick... read whole comment...
wayne gave this trail 5 stars about 6 years ago

Neep - Rowantree


Viewed 1817 times
Length: 6.8 Miles
Ascent: 557 m
Time: 2 hrs
Tech Grade: Hard
Fitness Grade: Hard
Av. Trail Rating:
(3 votes so far)
Description:-
This is the standard route used by the 'Ecurie Neep' MTB club.

Starting from the Rowantree car park, the very first section of this trail is a bit of a technical climbing challenge. The bedrock gully through the trees with boulders and steep rocky sections is all rideable but only if you have the energy and skill.

From Tag1 up to Tag2 is a much less technical climb up through the trees. The only challenge here (other than the gradient) is the drainage ditches which need to be hopped over.

From the tree-line at Tag2 right up to the side of Mither Tap at Tag3 is an exposed hillside walkers trail. Quite wide single track most of the way, it is rocky and interesting most of the way up.

At Tag3 you turn sharply to your right and start to descend down a steep rock garden. Challenging in places, section of the ride is why it has been graded as a ‘Hard’. With no other easier way down, if you don’t like this kind of thing you’ll just have to climb down with your bike. This decent has several similar rocky sections scattered down its length, some of which can be taken at speed and jumped or dropped, and some which need to be carefully rolled down.

From Tag4 you join the Gordon Way to climb back up towards Oxen Craig at Tag5. Its rideable all the way up (with the exception of a few flights of rocky steps). From there you transition over to Tag6 at Craigshannoch.

From Tag6 it is all down hill back to the car park. Initially you are on a kitty-litter constructed walkers path, but you soon join the path you used the get up the hill at the start of the ride and are treated to a much more interesting and very bed-rocky descent all the way down. The main issue to contend with all the way down is the very frequent drainage ditches. These are real wheel-eaters if you hit them wrong, so you either need to go very slowly over them, or do a nice smooth bunny-hop over each one. Also, be very cautious of and courteous to walkers on this section. This is a very popular route up the hill, and it is easy for you to get a lot of speed up here on the way down on a bike.

Note: the fitness grade is only 'Hard' because there's a lot of climbing for such a short ride.

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Comments and ratings for Bennachie circular
I've done a very similar route to this in the past starting from the Bennachie Centre car park. Just a couple of minor variations from this route and missed out the Millstone Hill bit. It's an OK run,... read whole comment...
ravelin gave this trail 2 stars about 5 years ago

Bennachie circular


Viewed 1256 times
Length: 15.4 Miles
Ascent: 607 m
Time: 3 hrs
Tech Grade: Moderate
Fitness Grade: Moderate
Av. Trail Rating:
(1 votes so far)
Description:-
The route runs around the entire Bennachie plateau and over the Millstane Hill. This route starts and ends in the Back O'Bennachie Car Park near Oyne, but could just as easily be started in either of the other two car parks the route will take you through.
At marker 1, you have the option to skip the Millstane Hill and take the path through the forest, rejoining the GPS route at marker 2.
Most of the terrain isn't technically challenging, though there are a couple of steep rocky sections on the descents (at 10.6k and 13.1k) that most will want to walk down...
Take something to refuel halfway round - the tracks behind Pittodrie House can feel like a real drag for tired legs!


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Comments and ratings for Bennachie up and over
andymay73 gave this trail 5 stars about 5 years ago
Rating my own trail entry. It's good but the fire-road climb stops it getting 5 stars.
ravelin gave this trail 4 stars about 5 years ago

Bennachie up and over


Viewed 1140 times
Length: 10.5 Miles
Ascent: 516 m
Time: 1.5 hrs
Tech Grade: Moderate
Fitness Grade: Moderate
Av. Trail Rating:
(2 votes so far)
Description:-
A less challenging alternative to the Neeps Rowantree route starting from the Bennachie Centre car park. It's got less climbing and is probably less interesting but still retains the fantastic descent down the Rowantree path. The Rowantree path, and the paths around the Bennachie Centre especially, can be very popular with walkers, dog walkers and families. I've generally done this route in the long summer evenings when its much quieter than the weekends. In fact the Bennachie plateau is a fantastic place to be on a cloudless summers evening as the sun is setting!

Start out by following the main trail that runs round to the left of the Bennachie Centre building and keep following the wide path as it heads uphill. Part way up the hill you'll see a sign for the 'Gordon Way' pointing to the left (Tag 6). Take the Gordon Way as it climbs on a good path through the woods until you reach a three-way junction of the Millstone Hill, Mither Tap and Gordon Way paths.

Here you have a choice, the more interesting but demanding route is to continue to follow the Gordon Way as with the Neeps Rowantree route. My route takes a slightly easier way of gaining the summit plateau by turning left, then immediately right onto a fire-road, again turning right shortly after (the OS map suggests a path cutting across this little jink but I've not noticed it on the ground). Grind your way up this fire-road as the views open up to your left until you regain the Gordon Way again at the top of it (Tag 1).

Turn right and follow the track until you reach a path that heads to the left. Take this path, climbing upwards to just under the summit of Oxen Craig (Marilyn). Unless you decide to take the short diversion to the summit itself, you'll be glad to know that it's almost all downhill again from this point!

Now enjoy the ride down the good paths towards Craigshannoch over to your left, then turning towards the right to the start of the descent down the Rowantree path (Tag 2). Enjoy the decent down this rocky path, watching out for walkers and drainage ditches until you reach the first obvious trail at crosses your path. Turn right along this trail which takes a left-hand turn downhill shortly after. At the bottom of this short hill take a turn to the right to follow the wide, but often rough, track back towards the Bennachie Centre.

After about 2km you'll come to an obvious change of surface as a rough path changes into a more man-made surface (Tag 4). Continuing straight ahead from here will take you back to the car park.

If you've energy left though then an alternative it to turn right to climb uphill on the path that then swings around to the left to take you back towards where you turned onto the Gordon Way at the start. Don't turn onto it this time though, but instead continue up the short but steep climb until the path splits (Tag 5). Turn left and enjoy the good path as you follow a short loop before again reaching the Gordon Way. Turn left to follow it all the way back towards the car park (or turn right after a bit down the path towards the Clachie Burn for an alternative).

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Comments and ratings for Bennachie Circular Two
The description has a typo it should say left not lift. Though a lift would be very welcome at this point. On the singletrack descent part of the ride the forest floor mulch is very soft and deep in ... read whole comment...
oldmack gave this trail 3 stars about 2 years ago

Bennachie Circular Two


Viewed 770 times
Length: 13.4 Miles
Ascent: 570 m
Time: 2.5 hrs
Tech Grade: Moderate
Fitness Grade: Moderate
Av. Trail Rating:
(1 votes so far)
Description:-
Starting from the Bennachie vistor centre, this route follows the path/rough track towards Rowan Tree. Once you are on the Maiden's causway path, turn left and climb up the hill for just over two hundred metres until you come to a junction of paths. Take a right and follow the wide singletrack. It gets more narrow and rougher as you progress along it.

Eventually you will arrive at a junction- take a left and follow the singletrack which lands you on the forest road. Follow this forest road past Back O' Bennachie. This track carries on for a few kilometres and it terminates with a singletrack path at the end of the track. Follow the singletrack and take a left at the track which the path ends at.

Continue along this track climbing gradually and take a lift onto the Gordon Way track.
Climb up the track and follow the Gordon way as it becomes singletrack which can be rocky and peaty in places but fun to ride!

The path enventually widens and there are good views over to Pitficchie, Milstone and surrounding countryside.
The tricky part is finding the start of the long singletrack descent. The start of the descent is a vauge heather path which becomes obvious as it enters the woods.
If you are on the Gordon way and reach a sign post with a big track heading right, you have gone twenty metres too far. The grid ref for the start of the path is NJ 657 223.

The singletrack descends for a kilometre and a half. Can be muddy in places and best left for a drier day to enjoy it!
Turn right onto the forestry track and follow it for a kilometre or so, taking the nextg left and its a gradual climb till you come to a sign post marker for Bennachie. Take a left onto path then right for return to Bennachie centre.

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Round Millstone


Viewed 601 times
Length: 5.8 Miles
Ascent: 238 m
Time: 1.5 hrs
Tech Grade: Easy
Fitness Grade: Easy
Av. Trail Rating:
(0 votes so far)
Description:-
Start near the Bennachie Center and after the first left keep the hill on your right.

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Bennachie Loop


Viewed 479 times
Length: 10.9 Miles
Ascent: 783 m
Time: 3 hrs
Tech Grade: Hard
Fitness Grade: Hard
Av. Trail Rating:
(0 votes so far)
Description:-
Grinding climbs and technical descents. Watch out for walkers!

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Average rating for the trails at Bennachie


4 Stars

7 votes for this rating
This venue has been viewed 14253 times

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