The Great Forest of Loch Ard offers fantastic walks of different lengths. You can top up your supplies from the shops in Aberfoyle village and collect a very elaborate map from the Aberfoyle Tourist information centre which has detailed walking directions.
It is very easy to come across walking posts along the paths which lead to extraordinarily beautiful spots such as the view point on the Garbeg Hill and Sculptures in the Lochan Spling lake.
Throughout the forest of Loch Ard, there are plenty of lakes such as Loch Chon, Loch Ard and tiny Clashmore Loch. Two of the important rivers – the Duchray Water and the Kelty Water start here and flow through the beautiful forest to join the River Forth.
Loch Ard Forest is so much more than just a forest, there are so many native woodlands including the remnants of ancient oak woods that once covered this area. These are all under the protection of the Forestry Commission which ensures maximum preservation and beauty.
Wildlife in Loch Ard Forest
The forest is home to a wide range of species; ponds and large lochs, broad leafed conifer woodland, open ground and mountain tops.
From Red and Roe Deer to Red Squirrels and the elusive Pine Marten to insects such as butterflies, dragon flies and moths – all have benefited from the Forestry Commission Scotland’s habitat preservation and improvements as well as many reptiles and amphibian species.
You are likely to come across raptors too, from the smallest, the Merlins to the largest – the Golden Eagle. These famous ospreys can often be seen hunting for fish over many of the Lochs. The forest also offers home to many other brid species such as the rare Capercaillie, black grouse and Crossbill along with the smallest British bird, the Goldcrest!