- Creag Bheag – joins the old with the newThis week the new path joined with the old path that leads up to the summit cairn. This prompted a wee celebration with some Prosseco – kindly supplied by Kenny… Read more: Creag Bheag – joins the old with the new
- Creag Bheag path worksSince the helicopter lift of 100 tons of quarry dust up Creag Bheag on 19 May 2023 volunteers have completed the first two phases of path work across the summit… Read more: Creag Bheag path works
- Helicopter bag drop on Creag BheagFurther to our post on 13 May 2023 regarding the helicopter lift of materials for the path on Creag Bheag, we have a gallery of videos and pictures to give… Read more: Helicopter bag drop on Creag Bheag
- Unexpected item in the bagging area!Well, not quite… but that’s 99 bags of gravel filled and ready to go for Friday. Many thanks to Pitmain Estate for providing the digger and resources to fill the… Read more: Unexpected item in the bagging area!
- October paths updateThe Thursday paths group of volunteers have had a busy summer working on three areas around Kingussie. Ardbriolach Road path In mid-May we started on the new path alongside Ardbriolach… Read more: October paths update
- KCDC’s Path Group awardI’m delighted to report that Scotland’s national walking charity, Paths for All, has recognised KCDC’s Path Group as Community Path Group of the Year at the Volunteer Awards 2022! Check… Read more: KCDC’s Path Group award
For many years volunteers have been carrying out the maintenance on the paths network around Kingussie. The work of individuals and groups improves existing paths as well as those created and improved in recent years by both contractors and local estates. The work carried out by individuals includes maintaining the signposts around the network and clearing encroaching vegetation.
The initial elements of the footpaths update saw contractor works, funded by the Cairngorm Trust, at the end of August 2019 which resulted in key upgrades to three sections of the local path network. A lengthy muddy section on the core path from Kingussie to Newtonmore was resurfaced; a damaged bridge at Allt Gorton on the same route was repaired; and a steep section of steps and handrail on the Golf Course Circular path was made safe.
The new bridge at Allt Gorton and the new steps and railings on a steep section of the Golf Course Circular path.
During the latter stages of 2020, the concentration of work has been through volunteers working on the lower section of the path leading to ‘Kingussie’s Hill’, Creag Bheag. This route is a very popular one, with numerous local residents climbing it on a regular basis, and many visitors enjoying the energetic climb to the top, and then the wonderful views over the Spey valley, Kingussie golf course and the Monadhliath mountains.
The upper section of the 487m hill benefited from work carried out ten years ago as part of a mountain path training exercise by the Cairngorm Outdoor Access Trust. With resources brought in by helicopter, and a willing group of trainees, the pre-existing path was brought up to a very high standard. However, time ran out and the lower section leading to West Terrace received no such upgrade… until the arrival on the Kingussie scene of Sandy Maxwell.
Sandy had previously worked on upland footpaths for the John Muir Trust. Under his guidance, and with his expertise, the volunteer group of (mainly) retirees was established, and now 6-10 enthusiasts meet on a weekly basis for some hard work and good craic.
Since the summer of 2020, around 500 man hours have resulted in the transformation of what had previously been a rocky/muddy and awkward 120 metre section through the installation of drainage ditches, cross drains, regular rock steps and solid sub surfaces.
There is still a long way to go on this project, but plans are already taking shape for the future, with an indicative survey of the path from Tom Baraidh woods through to the Raitts settlement having been completed.
In addition to the funding from the Cairngorm Trust, the KCDC footpaths group has also been able to apply to the Co-op Communities scheme, which, thanks to local members raised over £5000 towards the project. This funding has enabled the purchase of a power wheelbarrow, some tools for the volunteer group, and 30 tonnes of surfacing material for present and future works.
The first outing for the power barrow, was on the Golf Course Circular route, on a particularly muddy section above the 6th fairway. Over two volunteer days, this path has now been transformed, and is now a far more accessible route for all.
The path maintenance volunteers have been gathering every Thursday (weather permitting). The work parties usually last from around 9.30am to 3.30pm but many volunteers only come for part of the day.
Tools, training and supervision are supplied so volunteers with no or lots of experience are welcome.
If you are interested in coming along (or have any questions) please contact email@example.com or telephone 07766 380 663.
Alternatively, click on the button below to join our email mailing list to receive weekly updates:
These updates will tell you where the work party will be meeting, what’s planned and any changes to dates due to weather forecasts.