3Ls Walking Group
Our Walking Group is open to all members and offers a chance to take part in a range of group walks. We share ideas of interesting routes and since the group was opened, we have explored a variety of urban and countryside settings and typically our walks last between 4 and 8 miles. If you'd like to register an interest in joining us, just send an email to LLLAssoc@strath.ac.uk and we'll let you know more about our ideas for future walks.
Kilmarnock Parks & Castles
Our 8-mile walk took us through Kay Park, Dean Country Park and Craufurdland Castle Grounds via the Burns Monument in Kay Park and the Laird's Table cafe and nearby fishery. We admired the recently restored Dean Castle, once the stronghold of the Boyd family and built on land granted in the 14th century by King Robert the Bruce.
Blantyre to Bothwell Castle
Starting at the David Livingstone Museum in Blantyre, we followed a 3-mile route across the nearby suspension bridge built by the landowner in 1852, along the Clyde Walkway to and from Bothwell Castle. The museum is in the building where Livingstone grew up and holds an exhibition which follows his life and legacy.
Dams to Darnley Country Park
Highlights on this walk included Darnley sycamore, Darnley Mills, Victorian water supply architecture, old mining activity, a variety of geological features including the plug site at Duncarnock, various dams and the splendid railway viaduct. Gorbals Gravitation Water Company was set up in 1846 to supply water to areas south of the Clyde. The works drew on water from the Brock Burn to feed the Balgray, Ryat Linn, Waulkmill Glen and Littleton Reservoirs
Another sunny walk at Catrine where the group enjoyed an interesting route of 8.5 miles. We followed the River Ayr Way visiting the Catrine Voes – a substantial weir and pondage system which powered the cotton mills via the largest water wheel in use at that time. Other sites of interest were the spectacular sandstone geology in the Mauchline gorge, the best group of ‘Neolithic ‘cup and ring’ marks in Scotland, the Fisherman’s Tryst and the Mauchline viaduct with the longest stone arch on the rail network.
Bishopton & Formakin
This walk took our group to Renfrewshire. Starting at Bishopton, our 6-mile route along country roads took us via the Formakin estate, passing Formakin House, known locally as the Monkey House, which was built in the early twentieth century by John Augustus Holms.
A repeat of an old favourite - our 5 mile walk took us around the Green Bridge loop in Chatelherault Country Park.
Another interesting route around the countryside to the south of Glasgow from Clarkston, skirting the borders of Thorntonhall and Waterfoot villages, with lovely views of the surrounding fields and farmland.
Dumbarton to Balloch
On this walk we followed the River Leven Heritage Trail, learning about the world-famous
vibrant Turkey Red colours and patterns
which characterised the former textile, dyeing and printing industry in the area. Our 7.5 mile route along the towpath
between Dumbarton and Balloch took in several
places of interest – Dumbarton Rock (Alt Clut), the ancient Brythonic capital of Strathclyde and the site of Denny’s shipyard (where the Cutty Sark was built).
White Cart Way
Our walk followed the White Cart Way from Paisley Town Centre to Pollok Country Park, a distance of around seven miles - all on good footpaths with no steep ascents! There were many places of interest along the route - Paisley Abbey, Anchor Mills, Blackhall, Jenny's Well Nature Reserve, a stylish Art Deco housing development, Leverndale Hospital, Ross Hall before we arrived at the re-opened Burrell Collection via Pollok House.
A sunny day saw an intrepid band of walkers enjoy a gentle walk of around 3 miles in the woodland park at Cuningar Loop in Dalmarnock on the banks of the River Clyde.
Our group enjoyed a sunny trip "doon the watter" via the ferry from the beautifully restored station at Wemyss Bay to Rothesay, where we took a 7-mile route along the West Island Way to Mount Stuart House. Sights enjoyed on our walk included the Victorian seaside architecture in Rothesay, Rothesay’s Royal Castle, site of early cotton mills and lades, Loch Fad & trout fishery and Loch Ascog, ending at Mount Stuart House and Gardens.
Cathkin Braes & Marsh
We revisited the rural walk at Cathkin Braes which was the location for the very first outing for our group in November 2021. The 5 mile route initially offered great views of the skyline over Glasgow and beyond towards the Campsies and we enjoyed a tour of Cathkin Braes, the Cathkin Marsh Wildlife Reserve and Coulter's Wood via local farmland before topping off our day with fantastic fare at Laura's Cafe in Carmunnock.
Hamilton to Chatelherault
Another fun outing to Chatelherault. Starting from the Hamilton Museum, our group walked via the Hamilton Mausoleum, along the banks of the River Clyde and the River Avon. Before heading into the country park where we admired views of the Avon Gorge before enjoying well-earned refreshments after a 9-mile circuit.
A small group of walkers left from the Visitors’ centre and embarked on a seven and a half mile walk at Whitelee Windfarm, the UK’s largest onshore windfarm.
Our route on forestry roads followed the Lochgoin circuit, passing by just a few of the 215 turbines on the site, and gave us some lovely views. We finished off with an enjoyable lunch at the Visitors’ centre.
Irvine to Troon
Members enjoyed a lovely, flat 6-mile walk along Irvine beach to Troon, on Monday 17 April. The group started at Irvine Station and followed a route along the beach all the way to Troon, with beautiful views over to Arran and Ailsa Craig.
Polmont to Linlithgow
A convivial 7-mile stroll along the Union Canal from Polmont to Linlithgow. Our group had an unexpected encounter with a quad bike on the Avon Aqueduct which added to the fun of the day before we "arrived in style" at Linlithgow Loch behind the Palace.
We enjoyed a 5-mile circuit of the Baron’s Haugh Nature Reserve in Motherwell on this outing. The route offered a grand riverside and woodland stroll and a couple of gradual hill ascents, up from the River Clyde and into the Dalzell Estate. Sights of interest along the way included Dalzell House & grounds, The Hamilton family mausoleum, Lord Gavin's Temple and the Covenanters Oak.
Another popular walk for our group, taking in the three southside villages of Giffnock, Clarkston and Whitecraigs via a right of way through Cathcart Castle Golf club and hidden corners of Rouken Glen and Eastwood parks.
Helensburgh & Rhu
From Helensburgh Central our walk passed by the Hill House and along a section of the John Muir way. Views opened our over Rhu towards Arran in one direction and the Arrochar Alps behind us. After a walk to the Point at Rhu looking towards Garelochhead, we headed back along the esplanade to complete our lovely 8-mile route.
Dunlop Community Woodlands
Another walk with lots of interesting sights along the way, including Dunlop Church and the Hans Hamilton Tomb, Clandeboyes School (1641), Dunlop Hill and Royal Observer Corps post, Carlin’s Stone and Dunlop House. After a hearty lunch at the Village Hall walkers were also delighted to see some magnificent stained glass windows in Dunlop Church.
9 January 2023
The first outing for 2023 was a circuit of Linn Park and paths alongside the banks of the River Cart when walkers enjoyed visiting some of the sights along the Cathcart Heritage Trail.
Rainy weather descended as the group approached the Halfpenny Bridge so a retreat to nearby Derby Cafe was very welcome!
Spectacle E'e Falls, Strathaven
5 December 2022
Our final short walk for 2022 took us to Strathaven to hear the tale of the old mill and the doomed romance which gave the name to the waterfall on the Kype Water.
Bridge of Weir & Quarrier's Village
16 November 2022
Our group headed to Renfrewshire for a 7 mile walk featuring the weirs and rapids on River Gryffe, following the old railway path and into the ‘model village’ for orphans founded by philanthropist and social reformer William Quarrier. Along the way we encountered some unusual metal sculptures and other public art installations!
Old Drove Roads
8 November 2022
Our intrepid band of walkers enjoyed a lovely 5.5 mile walk on quiet roads and rural footpaths through countryside to the south of Newton Mearns. The walk offered scenic views as far away as the Campsies and country views beyond, to the north and west. The route followed several sections of old Drovers Roads passing local farms and stables and our walk ended at the Broom Cafe with another hearty lunch and chat about options for future walks.
Croy Hill & the Antonine Wall
26 October 2022
Another fine walk where the 7 mile route included Croy Hill, Barr Hill, the Antonine Wall and a section of the Forth & Clyde Canal. This outing marked almost one year since our first Group Walk and the location was where the idea of setting up the Group originated – something to celebrate!
Places of interest along the walk included the Roman Wall built by Antoninus Pius, Barr Hill Fort (one of the best on the wall) and Croy Fortlet, various old mine and quarry workings, a stretch along the Forth and Clyde Canal and narrowboats at Auchinstarry Marina. Lunch at the Boathouse rounded off another enjoyable outing.
19 October 2022
Our walk started at the Harelaw Trout Fisheries and was in two parts, first heading south to visit Long Loch then continuing in a northerly direction along forestry tracks till we reached the hill known as the Neilston Pad which offered extensive views in all directions.
Finishing at the cosy Fishery Cafe, we enjoyed hearty fare after our 7.5 mile walk, with great views overlooking Harelaw Loch. Another excellent walk in our programme.
Bowling & Erskine Bridge
7 September 2022
A circular 8 mile walk starting at Bowling, along the Forth & Clyde Canal and up and over the Erskine Bridge, then around the Boden Boo Nature Reserve before returning to Bowling via another nature reserve.
Points of interest included Bowling Basin, the Clyde foreshore and old Erskine harbour and great views towards the city.
Castle Semple Loch
26 August 2022
Our 5 mile route took us along the side of Castle Semple Loch, through Parkhill Wood and returned via Lochwinnoch village, on a mixture of woodland paths and tarmac pavements. Historic Features along the way included Temple Hill, Grotto and the remains of Castle Semple and the Collegiate Church.
9 August 2022
A 6 mile route around Burncrooks Reservoir in the Kilpatrick hills, with extensive views to the north of Glasgow. The walk started outside the Edenmill Farm Shop, Stockiemuir Road, Blanefield north of Bearsden. The Edenmill Cafe provided welcome refreshment after our walk at the Reservoir.
25 July 2022
A chance to explore some hidden corners in and around Biggar. Our walk started from the Corn Exchange and covered about 4 miles, around the periphery of Biggar with lovely views of the Southern Uplands and Tinto Hill from Bizzy Berry hill. We finished with lunch at the newly refurbished Gillespie Community Centre cafe. After lunch, a walk up and down Biggar High Street revealed a variety of independent shops including the excellent ice cream shop!