Aberdeen City Rides: Primefour, Leuchars Moss and Cullerlie Stone Circle.
Updated: Jun 8
This route takes advantage of the short drive allowed in Phase 1. It starts, fittingly, at the Kingswells Park and Ride and follows a rolling route into typical, ancient Aberdeenshire countryside. Back in town, I'm running mountain bike skills coaching next week. Sign-up on my website.
If you do drive to the start of the route, park in the Aberdeen Park and Ride by Primefour in Kingswells. Please remember, if you have your bikes on the roof, to take them off for the 2m height restriction barrier. Ride out of the carpark exit, turn left, on to the main A944 cyclepath, and head out of town. Take a track on the other side of the road after the farm, over locked gates, and into Kingshill Woods. There is some great biking in these woods so choose your own route to the southwestern corner. The conventional route is to turn sharp right at the first junction, and follow tracks along the western edge of the woods until you reach the road bridge under the AWPR.
Go under the AWPR, and take the second a farm track to the left, just at a righthand bend in the road. Follow the track uphill, to a t-junction and take a right, then on down, to the left of the farm, to a road.
This route crosses working farm land. Its worth having a read of the Do The Ride Thing guide from Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland. The guide outlines how to exercise responsibly your land access rights: by taking responsibility for your own actions; respecting the interests of other people and caring for the environment. This route has road sections, that I would normally avoid, to be sensitive to landowner's workplace during the current restrictions.
Turn right on the road, then left on to a farm track to cross Leuchar Burn. The route takes a straight line to the west. Follow the track, path (press on along the field margin at the manure heap), past the Helipad, and forest edge all the way to a road at the other end.
From the path, there is a view across Leuchars Moss. A moss is a bog or swampy ground in a depression. This moss has been drained and its area reduced for agriculture but the different colours of vegitation in the satellite image of the area still shows signs of the ancient channels and pools. The moss would have been good hunting and fishing grounds long before Improvement in the 1700s, which may be why the Cullerlie Stone circle is located nearby (and worth a stop on the route).
Turn right on the road, and follow it all the way to a t-junction at farm building. Turn right, passing the stone circle, and right again to reach the main road junction. Turn right at this junction towards Aberdeen, then almost immediately, left in behind the post box and bus shelter. The buildings here are a mill, with steam and hydroelectric engines, but more of that on later rides. Follow the track past the end of the row of cottages and a dam, and on to a road. The Garlogie Woods, opposite, have some great little beginners trails in, follow these to the northern edge of the wood. Its your own adventure in the woods, but if the navigation gets too frustrating come back out on to a road and head north.
Follow the roadsigns to Kirton of Skene (there is an excellent view behind you over the Loch of Skene from the Skene School). Take the main road through the village, and join the cyclepath for Westhill. Follow the Old Skene Road and West Hill Road straight on through the village (about 2km). When the road makes a right bend at a farmhouse, take the farm track straight ahead. Then left on a road, and a track on the right after the house towards the AWPR. Cross the bridge over the AWPR, and take a small track beside a wall, towards Primefour Business Park, just before the main road. The boundary of the business park is a Consumption Dyke. Consumption Dykes are unique to northeast Scotland, and there are type examples in Kingswells. Consumption dykes, were built in 1850, with stone cleared from the adjacent fields to define land boundaries. Riding along it is a mini-adventure but you have an awkward carry to get up and down. A top tip is to stand your bike on end and push or pull it on its back wheel on the steps. At the half way point in the dyke (or the grass track beside it), turn up hill into the business park through the buildings (look for A2+B, then Home Farm)and back to the Park and Ride.
Please remember that height barrier on the car park exit!
I will be running introduction to Mountain Biking course next week, using some of the rides in these blogs. If you would like to improve your mountain biking skills and confidence, or just fancy a ride, please sign up on my website.
Strava Route Profile
ViewRanger Route Profile https://my.viewranger.com/route/details/MzA4NzQ0OQ%3D%3D
28km suitable for gravel bikes for care on the field boundary section.