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Venue: Balblair

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Venue Type:
No. of Trails: 1
Car Park
Take the A836 through Ardgay and over the river into Bonar Bridge. Follow the road through Bonar Bridge (heading towards Lairg) for around 1.5km and look for the car park and trail head on the right. If travelling by rail, Ardgay is just 3km away.

Click here to see a detailed map and information about any additional locations.
The trails at Balblair, together with the Carbisdale trails, comprise the Kyle of Sutherland mountain bike development. The former has a short blue-graded loop and also a black-graded circuit.

The only facility immediately on-site at Balblair is a small carpark. However, toilets, cafes and shops can be found just along the road in Bonar Bridge and local accommodation includes the iconic Carbisdale Castle hostel.

Trails at Balblair


Trail TitleLength (Miles)Ascent (Mtrs)Time (Hrs)Tech GradeFitness Grade
Balblair black6.53391 Hard Moderate

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Comments and ratings for Balblair black
Had a great day out at Balblair. A very good place to improve your bike handling skills due to the technical climbs and a few technical descents. On slab !!! ??
ftft gave this trail 4 stars about 7 months ago
Really enjoyed the techie bits, drop offs and the bedrock just made me want to shout yabba dada dooo! gives you a good confidence boost to black trails! despite the up hill bike hike in bits as well a... read whole comment...
upanddooner1 gave this trail 5 stars about 8 years ago
A bit short but very sweet. A good mix of technical rocky sections and a nice flowing descent to finish it off. The Candy Mountain section near the mast is just nuts though - thought I did well walkin... read whole comment...
wildhighlander gave this trail 4 stars about 8 years ago
This is a fantastic little stop-off on the way up to Golspie. If you like bedrock trail surfaces you'll love the techie bits on this trail. Really interesting and well built man-made trail.
wayne gave this trail 4 stars about 8 years ago
On paper there's quite a high proportion of fireroad, but it doesn't feel like it when you actually ride the route.
cat89 gave this trail 5 stars about 8 years ago

Balblair black

Viewed 965 times
Length: 6.5 Miles
Ascent: 339 m
Time: 1 hr
Tech Grade: Hard
Fitness Grade: Moderate
Av. Trail Rating:
(5 votes so far)
This short black loop features some technical rock slab sections and also some fast, flowing descents... not to mention excellent views of the firth and minimal trail traffic! Although short, the outward and return trails are linked so it is possible to do a second (or third) lap of the best bits.

The route:

The route is well way-marked. Simply follow the black arrows.

The first section of singletrack (tag 1) is blue-graded and not particularly exciting, but once you get onto the balck-graded singletrack climb (tag 2), things get interesting as you pick your line over rock slabs to progress up the hill.

There is one particularly tricky technical climb (tag 3) just before you join the fireroad which leads you to the mast... and the start of the descent (tag 4). This descent, although black-graded, is surprisingly flowing and has no particularly daunting features.

After a short uphill section and a stretch of fireroad, you have the option of rejoining the the outward route by taking a way-marked left-hand turn (tag 5). Alternatively, you can keep going for another section of singletrack descent and a bit of fire road and turn off where you did at the beginning of the trail to reach the blue descent (tag 6). Again, this will be way-marked.

The final section of descent is an easy, but fun section of blue-graded trail which twists down through the trees leading you back to the carpark.

Add comment and/or rate trail: Balblair black


Average rating for the trails at Balblair

4 Stars

5 votes for this rating
This venue has been viewed 8513 times

Overall comments about Balblair

Perhaps not enough to warrant being the sole destination on a trip, but defintely worth taking a detour to Balblair if you're going to Golspie (and vice-versa!).
cat89 commented about 8 years ago

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