Gallus Running
Craigendoran to Balloch

Craigendoran to Balloch

Length
10.3 Kms
Elevation gain
332.9 m
Max elevation
268.4 m
Difficulty
**
Rating
****
Type
Point to point
Route id
590
Main road
0.5 Kms
Country road
1 Kms
Dirt road
2.1 Kms
Dirt path
0 Kms
Trail
6.7 Kms
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Directions to start point
Route summary

The Craigendoran to Balloch route is a trail and dirt road run within Loch Lomond and the Trossachs. The point to point covers a distance of
10.29 Kms ( 6.39 miles )
and has an elevation gain of
333 m ( 1092 feet )
.

Description
So we continue with our station to station run series where we use the railway network for the start and end points of the run. This time we started at Craigendoran station and went over the hill to Balloch station. Both well served stations in terms of the train frequency from the Glasgow and Edinburgh areas.
This route takes in the same hill as the Cardross to Helensburgh route but goes a different path apart from a short section. The views on this route are nicer.
The route starts in Craigendoran which is the east most part of the town of Helensburgh and goes up over the hill to Balloch on the shores of Loch Lomond. Craigendoran station has a wonderful history of being one of the main steamer ports and is well worth reviewing online. However, times have been hard and the twin piers now lie rotting and the station itself is just a shadow of it's former glory. If you arrive early morning or in an evening it's well worth taking the time to have a walk down to the old piers and catch the lovely up and down the Clyde.
The route itself starts off through the pedestrian tunnel at the station and follows the small road up to the main Cardross road, a distance of about
0.4 Kms
. Once you cross the road via the crossing you are away from main roads until reaching Balloch. This starts with a small path then small country road and dirt road before landing you on trail at about
1.9 Kms
. From this point the only way is up and you are on the main climb of the route which lasts about
2 Kms
. Worth noting that on this climb you really need to look back as the views down the Firth Of Clyde get better and better.
The route takes you through the wood at the top of Ben Bouie and then back onto more of a dirt road and the John Muir way leading down the hill towards Balloch. Here the views change from the Clyde to Loch Lomond. Although we describe this as a dirt road the condition of it is rough and it is more of a technical run. One of those areas where running up is easier than running down.
The road takes you over the main A82 by way of a pedestrian bridge and from there small roads until you arrive in Balloch proper. The station is on the right hand side just before you reach the bridge over the river. That said, Balloch is a lovely tourist village so lots of places to eat or just relax ( Try the country park for example ) if you are not in a hurry to catch the train. This is a good route and if the weather is with you one which the views alone make worth while.
Route directions
Kms
1
From the station head through the pedestrian tunnel.

0
2
On reaching Denniston Crescent turn right and follow the road up to the main road.

0.1
3
Use the pedestrian crossing to get across the main Cardross Road

0.4
4
After crossing the main road head for the small footpath marked by bollards at the entrance

0.5
5
Turn right when the footpath meets the small road, Collins Road

0.8
6
Take the dirt road to the left

1.5
7
Past the farm buildings

1.7
8
Take the small path on the right taking you across the small burn. Route is signposted

2.2
9
Cross over the dirt road and follow the path uphill

2.8
10
Keep on the same trail

4.3
11
At the main dirt road tee junction turn right

4.5
12
Onto the small trail going into the forest

5.2
13
Turn left at the signposted John Muir Trail

5.9
14
Follow the trail to the left towards Balloch

6.7
15
At the bottom of the hill take the path leading to the footbridge

9.1
16
After the footbridge follow the Lower Stoneymollan Road

9.1
17
Turn right at the tee meeting Old Luss Road and cross the road

9.5
18
Follow the footpath as it takes you around the roundabout

9.7
19
Take a right then left to head into Balloch on Balloch Road

9.7
20
Just before the bridge turn right and up to Balloch Railway Station

10.2
21
The station is on the left hand side

10.3
Craigendoran station area
Gallus Running : Craigendoran railway station
Craigendoran station from the footbridge
Craigendoran station area
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_016.jpg
The old piers of Craigendoran station
Craigendoran station area
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_017.jpg
From the pier area towards Helensburgh
Approaching the trail section
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_002.jpg
Looking back towards the farm buildings
Approaching the trail section
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_003.jpg
Gate marks the start of the trail
First climb through the woods
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_006.jpg
Cross over the burn, this was a rainy day
First climb through the woods
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_004.jpg
In through the trees and climbing
First climb through the woods
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_018.jpg
Nearing the end of the first wooded area
First climb through the woods
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_005.jpg
First view of the Clyde
Start of the main climb
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_008.jpg
Across the dirt road and the climb really starts
Main climb
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_009.jpg
View down the Firth of Clyde
Main climb
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_010.jpg
Ardmore point with Greenock across the water
Near the top
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_011.jpg
Nearing the top and we start to lose the view
Through the woods
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_007.jpg
A snowy day and we are heading towards the wood
Through the woods
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_015.jpg
Entrance to what is known locally as the Spooky wood
Through the woods
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_020.jpg
Looking back at the wood
First sight of Loch Lomond
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_001.jpg
Towards Loch Lomond
First sight of Loch Lomond
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_019.jpg
First sight of Loch Lomond
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_012.jpg
The long downhill
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_013.jpg
Views of the Loch Lomond islands and highland boundary fault
The long downhill
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_014.jpg
This part is easy running but soon becomes a lot more rocky and difficult
Into Balloch
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_021.jpg
Looking back up the road from the pedestrian bridge
Into Balloch
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_022.jpg
The road to Balloch
Balloch station
Gallus Running : Craigendoran to Balloch : 590_sm_023.jpg
Not much of a station :-)
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