#Discover Our Walking and Cycling Routes
Clackmannanshire offers lots of opportunity for exploring outdoors which is suitable for all ages and abilities. There are many established walks within the glens of the Ochil Hills. Alva Glen, Tillicoultry Glen and Dollar Glen are easily accessible and for the more intrepid, excellent views are your reward for ascending Ben Cleuch one of the highest and most popular hill walks in Central Scotland at 2363 feet.
This pleasant and popular circuit around Scotland’s oldest reservoir offers much for the serious bird watcher or family outings to see the ducks.
The reservoir is based on a natural loch that occurred here before the damming took place and as such was always home to water-loving wildlife, from very small as insects to larger like otters.
Gartmorn Dam was recognised as a nationally important site of special scientific interest in 1971 with a variety of rare pondweeds and part of it is also designated as a Local Nature Reserve as it is an important site for migratory wildfowl in the winter months. Many birds also live at Gartmorn all year round and breed here in the summer time, like the Great Crested Grebe.
Wild brown trout are at home in the water body and often shoals of young perch can be seen. They live in high densities as it helps them to avoid being eaten by larger fish, such as local pike.
In 1982 it became Clackmannanshire’s first and only Country Park.
Alva Glen is a spectacular gorge situated above the village of Alva at the foot of the Ochil Hills. It is a diverse and attractive glen. The forest floor is carpeted with many wild flowers and there’s a variety of wildlife to spot, such as the kestrel and the long tailed wagtail.
The glen is managed by the Alva Glen Heritage Trust which is run entirely by volunteers. They regularly plant new tree and shrubs in the area as well as removing non-native species of plant.
Each year the formal garden and waterfalls are illuminated by coloured lights. These stunning Alva Glen illuminations have been attracting people from all over central Scotland for many years.
As you follow the path from the car park you reach the first of five waterfalls, the highlights of the glen, including the 23m Craighorn Fall and the Big Fall, a hidden waterfall which cascades magically into the Smugglers Cave. You can also see a number of ancient hill-terraces, known locally as ‘The Delvins’, on the slopes of the glen.
The glen was once the centre of a busy textile industry and the remnants of an old dam and numerous workshops can be spotted. There are a number information signs to tell you about the history of the area.
An exciting short walk exploring the dramatic Mill Glen, one of the gorges that scour the southern wall of the Ochils. There are many bridges and small waterfalls as well as the fabulous glen itself. Clear and popular path; however there are many steps, it is rough in places and there are unprotected drops.
Jubilee Walk / Hillfoots Way
The Hillfoots Diamond Jubilee Way is 21km long and passes through the Hillfoots villages of Blairlogie, Menstrie, Alva, Tillicoultry, Dollar and Muckhart. It is designed so that it can be enjoyed end-to-end or section at a time. From the Hillfoots Diamond Jubilee Way you can divert into the various glens (Menstrie, Alva, Silver, Tillicoultry and Dollar) or link up with other paths to create your own circular routes.
The route is based on the old King’s Highway – the via regia in Latin – which is mentioned in charters for Cambuskenneth Abbey that date to the 1300s.
It is thought that the route was used for royal progresses between Stirling Castle and Falkland Palace in the 16th century.
Dumyat is the rocky little cub of the Ochils, far lower than the main range but packed with character. It has a superb position on the fringe of the range overlooking Stirling and the Central Belt; the views are superb.
Did you know that Dumyat was the capital of a lost Iron Age people, the Maetae, who challenged the Roman Empire? In addition, there’s a deserted farm at Fossakie, a 6000-year old quarry and much, much more!
By the Hill Path
A perfect first hillwalk on a fine day, this route avoids the very steep slopes on the southern flank of the hill.
A rougher approach to the lovely summit of Dumyat than the more popular route, however it has good views and although steep and indistinct in places makes a rewarding climb.
Rough and steep hill path, some indistinct sections where navigation skills essential. Short boggy areas.
Ochils Woodland Park
Formerly a grand 17th century house, the former lordly estate now acts as an attractive woodland park that cuts through some of Clackmannanshire’s finest scenery. The park is now all that remains of Alva House’s grounds.
Alva House was once home to the Erskine family and it dates back to 1636. Eventually sold to the Johnstone family in the late 18th century, it was rebuilt as a mansion by Robert Adam in 1789. It was further extended in 1820, but when the last of the Johnstones died in the 1920s no new buyer could be found. The house collapsed during World War II.
The estate offers many woodland walking routes, while display boards provide information on Alva House.
The exploration of the gorges of the Dollar Glen have been popular since Victorian times. The walk crosses many bridges, viewpoints and the impressive Castle Campbell and is a good walk to interest children although care should be taken in many places.
Black Devon Wetlands
Black Devon Wetlands is a mosaic of untouched wet grassland and wetland habitat including freshwater pools, brackish pools and reedbeds. The reserve is set back from the Inner Forth and forms an important area for large flocks of wintering wading birds and wildfowl.
Facilities on the reserve include a stunning and innovative viewing screen, perfectly placed for viewing wildlife on the freshwater pools, as well as paths, boardwalks and benches to enhance your visit to this hidden gem.