This week we’re taking a pleasant, circular three-mile walk from Killearn, which crosses the River Endrick through the Carbeth Estate.
It is important to mention that the walk also crosses an awkward small tributary, which flows into the Endrick, and can be difficult to negotiate – especially in the rainy season.
The walk starts at the Killearn health centre car park, at the corner of Station Road, and turns left onto the A875 in the direction of Balfron.
After passing the pharmacy the walk turns left opposite Killearn Tennis Club onto the narrow Drumtian Road and heads downhill into the countryside of open fields, farms and estates.
It passes Little Carbeth Estate on the left, Carbeth Estate on the right and at the foot of the hill turns left into the lane, signed “Public Path Drumtian Ford, ¼”.
At the ford there is an arch wooden bridge to walk across the River Endrick (pictured) .
With the substantial depth of water in the river it is quite amazing that vehicles were using this ford to cross at one time.
It is also a popular area for fishing by the Loch Lomond Angling Improvement Association (LLAIA).
Leaving the bridge, the walk turns right along the riverbank and passes by the track on the left as the entry/exit route for the ford.
At the electric fence sign, stiles have been put in place into the field for easier and safer walking, compared to the rough path on the bank.
It is pleasing that one of the stiles has been positioned beside a new seat on the bank in memory of Malcolm ‘Endrick’ Prescott.
This thoughtfulness has, however, not extended to the next stage of the walk and the crossing of the tributary which flows into the Endrick.
Without a bridge some stepping stones are in place at the estuary, but it is awkward and great care is required on crossing.
It is to be hoped that something will be put in place in the future by the relevant authority.
Having crossed the tributory the walk passes by the Wester Ballochruin Woods Project on the wider banking, which is “regenerating the native woodland and wildlife habitats”.
It then climbs up and turns right onto the footpath alongside the road bridge.
Over the bridge the walk enters the second track on the right, which bends downhill, first to the right and then to the left, before continuing ahead to pass by outbuildings, a duck pond and a walled garden within the 100 acre Carbeth Estate.
There is a “No Entry” sign for vehicles, but walkers are allowed on this track which soon passes the mansion on the left of Carbeth House, built in the 17th century and converted into flats in the 1980s.
The walk passes through a gate into the Stables Cottages and turns left to exit through another gate which leads to Drumtian Road.
On the right is the signed path previously taken to Drumtian Ford and continuing up the hill retraces the outward walk back to the health centre car park.