Rothesay to Kerrycroy walk.
This walk, as like the others starts at the Pedestrian Entrance/ Exit from the Main Pier.
It is a circular walk, talking a fairly high twisting climb above Rothesay, and returning along the Easterly coastline.
It is a clean walk, using tarmac at every stage.
Main Walk 7.60miles. 12.23 kilometres.
Lazy Route 6.6 Miles. 10.62 Kilometres
Over the Crossing to Albert Place.( Along to your right is Victoria Street), and as you continue left you come to the The Royal Hotel, so it is no wonder we are called Royal Rothesay.
As you pass this hotel turn right on to Bishop Street . Head upwards, crossing to the left side as soon as possible, as it is not advisable to do so at the top of this road due to traffic coming from Castle Street , which will not be seen until they fly round the blind corner.
Turn left at the top of the road, (ignoring the sign that says “Serpentine, Canada Hill”, pointing you to go through a building across the road) keep to the pavement and pass two bends on the Serpentine, then cross over to the pavement on the right hand side of Mountpleasant Road. Carry on, moving slightly uphill till you come to four- way junction. Cross over and continue uphill on Roslin Road which is steeper.. Once you pass Eden Drive there is no pavements , and indeed you will not be on another one until you get to “Hawkstone”, a private house which is just pass the three milestone from Rothesay, which is on your return journey, so take care as the roads get narrower, ending up as a single lane one with few passing places. If traffic appears ,do what I do, “get on to the verge” and stay there till they pass. This is the shortest route to Rothesay for traffic from the Kerrycroy area with no 30MPH signs until you come to the top of Roslin Road, which is the one that you are on.
As you get to the top, turn right and head along a fairly level narrower road, listening out for the cry of “FORE” as the second fairway of the Rothesay Golf Course is on you left.
As you get to the end of the woods on your right, you move downhill, and you are now on the single-lane road with a five tight bends on it , so, once again , take care.
Down past “Braeside” , and onwards to the Waterworks with lovely views of Loch Ascog .
Uphill once more enjoying the Vista, then it levels off and then downhill , but not too steeply. At this point stop and look across to Largs and The Great and Little Cumbrae's, with the little one having an unmanned Lighthouse, and the Great one has the popular holiday town of Millport, which you get a ferry to from Largs.
Pass Mid Ascog Farm, and you are now approaching the last two tight bends, and on the last one you will see on your right, a hollow on the small cliff on your right.
I was told that it was a well, but it only seems to be fed with seepage from the land above, but I suppose if you were dying of thirst it would do?
Carry on till you arrive at the main road the A844.
Fit ones turn right and head for the Hamlet of Kerrycroy which is only about a half a mile away. And if there are any lazy ones amongst you, they will go left, missing out the best part of the walk. They can head for Ascog Bay where there are plenty of seats.
Now “Fit ones” you are on a fast road with more bends, so take care,then within minutes Kerrycroy is in sight then you will arrive with your camera's at the ready.
This Hamlet was built by one of the Marquises of Bute for his wife as she was homesick. They are long since gone, leaving this wee village for all to enjoy, and every time I pass through, I have my coffee and a banana at my favourite seat, and enjoy this tranquil setting.
Fully refreshed, we now head along the coast, with no more climbs involved.
Keep a look-out for Turnstones, Sandpipers, Ringed Plovers, Oystercatchers at his section,as they nest on these shores, and far out you may well see a pair of Red Throated Divers who frequented this area for years. Cormorants and Shags are plentiful all the way , with Red Breasted Mergansers, close inshore.
It is a great area to photograph Seals that lie on the rocks from Kerrycroy to Ascog, and they are not camera shy.
Arriving at “Hawkstone”, we now have a pavement, so we can relax a bit, and next is an impressive building called “South Park” a name it has had as far back as I can remember, even when it was a holiday home for under privileged children from Glasgow.
Passing Balmory Road, we now come to “Ascog Hall” where you will find “The Fernery and Gardens”. This is well worth a visit, and as you are passing, why not go in. If it was not for Susannah from here, you would not be reading this, as it was her that asked me if I would write about walks on Bute. Well I thought and thought, and as it seemed a very good idea, a friend of mine set me up with a web-site, so here I am writing about walks and also about articles that I have had published in the Buteman ( local paper) over the last ten years, and hope to be writing many more, so thank you.
Next building is "The Railway Home" .
This was built to give railway and ex railway workers a break to recuperate from operations or other ailments. Now Flats.
Another two holiday homes for those under privileged children further along the road were, the “Agnes Patrick” (now “Chandlers”) (see mock tudor image) with another higher up with the name “Mary Stevenson” accessed by foot with what was called “The Gangway”, with traffic having access a bit farther on at Millbank.
As you pass Chandlers , observe the narrow pavement, on the landward side only, with a low wall across the road, with a steep drop down to the shore. It must have been very hard to make a road here many years ago with limited machinery.
You now come to “Montford Terrace” which is the name for these Red Sandstone houses, and you now have two pavements to choose from , so take the seaward one.
Impressive houses all the way in to Rothesay, with really lovely ones after you pass “Bogany Point”, but before that you will come across a round building on the seaward side, which was the “Screening Chamber” so called as it screened the raw sewage . (enough said)
Onwards passing “The Pier at Craigmore”, which I have covered in Rothesay Walk No1. this doe's not mean that you can't stop for a coffee and cake though, so enjoy if you wish.
You will now have noticed that there are plenty of seats on the return journey on this walk, this I intended as by now you may be needing a rest.
Back into Rothesay, and I hope you have enjoyed this walk, and that the Weather has been kind to you.
I thank you .