Ardentinny to Carrick Castle Walk

Distance: 7 miles | Time: 4 hours | Ascent: 145m
“It used to be a hard slog as you approached Carrick Castle, but in January 2010 the final 4 mile section of the path was upgraded by the National Park and the Lochgoil Community Trust & Council. I prefer to do the walk Ardentinny to Carrick Castle because when you get to the highest part you come on the most fantastic vista of the entrance of Loch Goil from Loch Long with the view north heading up to Lochgoilhead. Truly a picture moment to remember” Recommended by: Leonard Gow, Lochgoilhead Holidays.
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This is a linear path so you either have to arrange to be dropped off at the start and picked up at the end – or you return via the same route. The most scenic section is the new 4 mile path from Carrick Castle so you can start and finish there for a shorter walk.

  • Start at the end of the Ardentinny Forestry Commission car park. The red route almost immediately heads up a flight of steps and takes a steep path up through the forest to a higher level forestry road.
  • There is a few miles of good forestry road with occasional views over to the vast Coulport development on Loch Long; Coulport is the servicing and storage area for Trident, the UK’s nuclear missile deterrent.  Follow the road up under a large electricity pylon and you will eventually come to a signposted route leading off on the new track marker for Carrick Castle.
  • This is the best part of the walk. The new path twists and turns over the hills with increasingly better views until you reach the highest part as Lochs Long and Goil meet. As I said in my introduction, this is a view to remember. There is often yacht and boat traffic to be seen. It is a perfect picture postcard of the sea lochs of Argyll.
  • The track through the woods descends to the shoreline at the Bay of the Pig where you are likely to see gulls, cormorants, eider ducks and oystercatchers. It carries on to Ardnahein Farm where you join a single track road leading into Carrick Castle village.

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Climb up through the forest at the start

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Follow the good forestry road

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Head up underneath the pylon

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Take the signposted path to Carrick Castle

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The views north up Loch Goil

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Loch Goil

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Carrick Castle

Transport

Bus service from Dunoon to Ardentinny as well as to/from Dunoon to Carrick Castle so it is possible to do this walk without a car.

Disclaimer

The route description and comments provided here are intended to complement and not replace the descriptions found in official guidebooks. You should equip yourself with a map, dress accordingly and have suitable footwear and a level of fitness to undertake this hill climb. There are walking guides and leaflets available from the Tourist Information Centres and you can find further information online.

Winter Safety

If you are hill walking in winter conditions please make sure you are equipped and experienced for the route you are walking.