Walks around Buchlyvie
The Old Railway Line to Arnprior
This walk is just under 5 miles long and can be quite muddy in wet weather. In the summer it is a magnificent walk along the Carse of Stirling. A map of the route, which includes photographs taken along the route, can be found at https://www.plotaroute.com/route/1047596.
The track of the old railway line to Stirling is a Core Path and it can be followed to Gartentruach Farm (or, with persistence, all the way to Arnprior). The start is exactly the same as the route to Aberfoyle. Park in the car park at the east end of the village and walk 200 yards up the Main Street to the first turning on the right, called Station Road. Walk down Station Road, over the Ballochneck Burn and turn down the first road on the right (labelled “Woodend”), which goes under a bridge of the old railway line. Immediately after this bridge, turn left to pass through a field gate and go up a muddy ramp to turn left along the old railway track. An alternative start may be made from opposite the old Buchlyvie station (now called “Station House”) which is about 100 yards beyond the turn-off to Woodend, where there is a signpost proclaiming the route to be a public path to Aberfoyle (and an important link to the NCN7 Lands End to John O’Groats cycleway). The route continues straight on to the aforementioned bridge.
After the bridge the track continues straight for a few hundred yards (heading for Stirling) and then curves to the left (heading for Aberfoyle). At this point a signpost points the way straight on to Arnprior. At this point the path can be quite overgrown in summer, but is easy to follow and there are several pedestrian gates across the track. Apart from where it goes through a cutting, the track is normally quite dry. There are open views to the left of Ben Ledi and the Menteith Hills. During the winter flocks of geese can be seen feeding on the grass.
After a mile and a half, the track reaches a public road - not busy, because it's a dead-end road - at Gartentruach Farm. The railway line used to pass through the farm yard, and the Core Path to Arnprior goes round the farm and rejoins the railway track a few hundred yards further on. When the railway line was closed, the bridge over the Mye Burn was demolished, so that, if you want to go to Arnprior, you will have to wade the Mye Burn, which is awkward even in dry weather. If you decide not to ford the burn, you may return to Buchlyvie by the route described in the walk “The Old Railway Line to Gartentruach”.
For those who are prepared to ford the Mye Burn, turn left and go a short distance along the road and then follow the public road to the right. A hundred yards or so along this, look for a gate on the right. Go through the gate and turn left along what was once the railway line. Soon afterwards, you meet the Mye Burn. Once over the burn, the old railway track is so overgrown that it becomes necessary to walk along the edge of the field parallel to the railway line. Soon afterwards it is possible to regain the track and follow it towards the old Port of Menteith Station. This is some distance from the Port of Menteith (in fact most of the stations on this line were not close to the villages they served, which may explain why the line was never profitable – by the time it existed, buses and coaches had become available).
If you follow the track to the station you emerge onto the B8034 road between Arnprior and the Port of Menteith, and the route to Arnprior is a mile or so along the road to the right - not a pleasant prospect! A better alternative is to turn right before reaching the station to go up past Backside of Garden. The public road here goes up and meets the A811 about half a mile from Arnprior. This is a busy road, although some of it may avoided by taking the footpath on the left parallel to the road into the village. Once in Arnprior, the X10 bus from Stirling to Balfron passes through to take you back to Buchlyvie.