Lochearnhead sits at the north-east corner of the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park. It is a beautiful location and well known for it’s watersports facilities, fishing and all things water based. We went through there as a family recently to try out one of the other attractions – National Cycle Route 7.
Lochearnhead sits at the bottom of Glenogle – a steep, narrow and incredibly beautiful glen. In days gone by Glenogle had a railway running along it’s western flank. That railway, long since closed is now part of the National Cycle Network Route 7.
For anyone looking for an easy, safe, family ride this presents a great downhill opportunity. It’s about 7.5 miles from the top of Glenogle to Balquhidder station (no station obviously, since we’re riding on the old track), most of it gentle downhill. For us, we had the opportunity of using two cars so we left one at the lower end by Mhor 84 (formerly the Kingshouse) and drove the bikes and family to the car park at the very top of Glenogle. The alternative would be for one of the adults to ride back up and get the car at the end of the route while the rest of the family get a drink and some food at the hotel at the end.
You do have to cross the busy main road once from the car park onto the cycle path but after that it is excellent, mostly ash track all the way to Balquhidder station. The track goes on all the way to Callander but this distance was perfect for the kids without turning it into a slog.
As you pass Lochearnhead, the views along the length of the seven mile loch are simply stunning. The path does get fairly steep, still downhill, for a couple of turns just past Lochearnhead, but brakes or 2 minutes pushing gets less confident riders past this easily.
From Lochearnhead to Balquhidder the trail runs through natural forest of birch and rowan and bluebell woods (in May/June) before getting to the Mhor 84 where the family can get a fine refreshment.