Among the fantastic attractions in Dumfries and Galloway are the mountain biking trails across the region. Enthusiasts come from all over the country to enjoy the challenging terrain and breath-taking scenery.
The 7Stanes centres offer world class facilities in Dumfries and Galloway and the Scottish Borders with routes to suit beginners, families and experts. You really can take it as easy or difficult as you like.
There are five centres in D&G – Kirroughtree, Forest of Ae, Mabie, Dalbeattie and Glentrool – each with its own particular demands. There are also skills areas at each location; so that you can practise the range of techniques you’ll need before you hit the trails.
The closest to our South West Scotland Holiday Cottages at High Kirkland are Dalbeattie (14 miles east) and Kirroughtree (24 miles west). You can reach both easily while you’re staying at your Galloway Holiday Cottage. It’ll take 30-40 minutes to reach them from Kirkcudbright.
Trail conditions are updated every Friday on Facebook and Twitter so that you know what to expect for the weekend. Even if it is a bit wet and muddy, all of our Kirkcudbright Holiday Cottages have washing machines to throw your gear into when you get back. There’s also secure bike lock-up to keep everything secure while you’re enjoying your break with us.
What links all of the centres is stone sculptures that represent a local myth or legend. At Dalbeattie you’ll find the Heart Cleft Stane. A local quarry donated a huge piece of granite for the sculpture which symbolises the area’s history as heart of the granite industry. Granite from Dalbeattie was exported and used all over the world, including the Thames embankment, Liverpool Docks and a lighthouse at the tip of Sri Lanka.
The ‘stane’ at Kirroughtree is a 1.75 tonne piece of Scottish pink quartz. It takes its inspiration from the nearby Creetown Gem Rock Museum. The museum’s diverse collection includes a 4.5 billion-year-old 3kg meteorite, rare crystals and the fossilised dung of a dinosaur.
All of the stone sculptures are accessible so can be reached on foot or horse, as well as by bike. Even if you don’t fancy mountain biking yourself, you can still visit all of the stones carved by sculptor Gordon Young. Mabie has a ghost sculpture (30 miles), Glentrool (36 miles) has a giant axe head and Forest of Ae (38 miles) has a head.
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Images are from the Forestry Commission Scotland website.