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Durris Forest
Durris Forest is one of two popular forests offering mountain biking (the other being Fetteresso Forest) accessible from the A957 Slug Road which joins Banchory and Stonehaven. In fact, the Slug Road separates Fetteresso from Durris.
 
On offer is an 9 mile cycle trail round the 3 peaks of Cairn-mon-earn, Strathgyle and Mundernal with an optional spur to the top of Cairn-mon-earn. There is also a complex network of other forest roads and off-road MTB trails that provide some fine mountain biking for all tastes. The ancient drovers route of Elsick Mounth passes through the forest.
 
The Durris Forest is a chiefly coniferous forest made of the Durris Forest itself and several smaller outlying woods. The forest is co-managed by Friends of Durris Forests, and Forestry Commission Scotland. Click the Durris forest logo for more information about the Friends of Durris Wood.
 

 
Cycle Routes
The small car park signed posted from the Slug Road is a good start point for both cycle routes. A notice board provides a last minute reminder of the route before you head away on a fire break road.
 
Circular Route
This is waymarked with white circles. The route uses forest road, and has some steep sections at the start, although the second part of the route has more gentle gradients. There are great views to the north near the end of the route, and recent felling and thining has opened out views within the forest. The forest route finishes at the Inchloan carpark leaving just over a mile to be completed on a quiet stretch of tarmac.
 
Cairn-mon-earn Spur
The yellow waymarked Cairn Spur leads off the circular route after about a mile. This is a real lung opener belying the fact that the spur is only a mile in length. The summit, at 378 metres high offers superb panoramic views. If you still have the energy then explore the Bronze Age burial cairn which now shares the summit with a more modern friend - a radio mast.

 
Getting to Durris Forest
Stonehaven and Banchory Durris Forest car park (grid reference 781909 - see OS map 45) is situated on the A957, known locally as the slug Road, between Stonehaven and Crathes. Don't expect any facilities at the car park, because there are none.
 
Stonehaven is just off the A90 some 15 miles south of Aberdeen. Once in the town follow the signs for the A957 Banchory. Although the road winds through Stonehaven a bit just keep going and eventually you'll leave the town and start climbing. Durris Wood is on your right about 7 miles from the town centre.
 
Banchory is on the A93 about 18 miles west of Aberdeen. From Banchory follow the signs for Aberdeen. After 3 miles, at Crathes, turn right to follow the A957 marked Stonehaven. The car park is on the left about half a mile after you reach the summit of the climb, about 5 miles from the Crathes junction.
 
You can cycle from Aberdeen in about 45 minutes mainly on minor roads via Netherley Smiddy; see OS map.

 
Alternative Start
The Durris Forest car park is small and is often full. A good alternative start point is the Inchloan carpark, about a mile away. From the Slug road entrance head towards Banchory taking the first turn on your right, about half a mile from the Slug entrance. Follow this road downhill where you will find the car park on the right after another half mile.
There are five small car parks at different corners of Durris Forest so getting parked shouldn't be a problem.

 
Facilities
Parking - Free, choice of five. See above.
Toilets - None
Showers - None
Bike Wash - No
Cafe - No. However both Banchory and Stonehaven offer cafes, shops, supermarkets, pubs, and restaurants.
Bike Hire - No
Bike Repairs - Banchory Cycles, in Banchory

 
Nearby Trails
Other mountain bike trails to explore in the area include:
Drumtochty Forest south west of Stonehaven
Kirkhill Forest between Aberdeen and Blackburn
Pitfichie Forest near Alford
Scolty Hill near Banchory
Bennachie Turnpike Trail near Inverurie

 

 
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