This leg is a 13-mile stretch, one of the longer sections, but most of those miles are flat and easier going than the previous two sections.
Head off from Strathblane, following the old Strathkelvin Railway Path, to Clachan of Campsie underneath Cort-ma Law hill and then onto Kirkintilloch’s rich, historic town centre for elevenses. Here you join the Forth and Clyde canal, enjoying flat terrain on the old towpath before encountering your first Roman Fort at Bar Hill (on the walking route). Take some time out to recreate in your imagination the ancient settlement and rest weary legs after that steep pull up to the summit. Auchinstarry Marina hosts a great pub, so why not stop off for food or a floating overnight stop?
This section mainly follows an old railway path on tarmac and a level canal towpath. At Twechar the route splits in two: walkers head up and over Bar Hill up a fairly steep path to the Roman fort. Cycling on the soft surfaces at the protected Bar Hill archaeological site is not permitted, so the waymarked cycling route is the better option for cyclists, staying on the flat canal towpath all the way to the marina at Auchinstarry, just outside Kilsyth.
There are several narrow bridges along the Strathkelvin Railway Path and a couple of busy road crossings in Kirkintilloch. Otherwise, if you keep to the canal towpath through to Kilsyth, this section is fully accessible by most people. The protected status (as well as some narrow kissing gates) restrict most of the route over the Antonine Wall between Twechar and Auchinstarry to pedestrians only.
For detailed information about potential access restrictions along this section, see the Accessibility Storymap.
By rail: the route can be accessed at the Kilsyth end from Croy train station, 1km from the trail.
By bus: Strathblane is covered by the X10 Glasgow-Stirling route. The 88C bus service links Kilsyth, Kirkintilloch and Lennoxtown.
By car: there is a small car park opposite Strathblane Parish Church and at eastern end of this section at Auchinstarry Marina.
Points of interest
Merkland Local Nature Reserve
Merkland is a mosaic of woodland, wetland and grassland with open water and burns developed on a former colliery site.
Loch Ardinning Scottish Wildlife Trust Reserve
Loch Ardinning is a visitor-friendly wildlife haven with 142 hectares of varied habitat, including wetland, woodland, grassland and moorland. The loch itself supports a number of wintering and breeding wildfowl and is rich in invertebrate life.Visit Website
This volcanic plug sits right beside the path near Strathblane and although not as high as the nearby Campsie Fells, is still worth a quick ascent to catch the view of the surrounding area.
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