This route returns the same way, or use the bus to return to Gatehouse (check timetable).
Start: Centre of Gatehouse DG7 2HS
Duration: 1.5-2.5 hours each way
A long but gentle uphill out of Gatehouse to Gatehouse Station, then a flat and exposed stretch. Followed by a wonderful, long downhill next to Moneypool burn.
0.0 Follow the Route 7 sign into the Mill on the Fleet grounds, cross the pedestrian bridge and follow the path straight through little park. Turn right along the road, following the National Cycle network no 7 sign. Follow this quiet residential road (Riverbank) through the houses.
0.2 Take the second left (following the route 7 sign) along Riverbank
0.3 At the T-junction turn right along Dromore Road (aka Old Military Road/B796). Follow this quiet, winding rural road straight ahead up the scenic Fleet Valley for 6 miles. Catch a glimpse of historic Rusco Tower on the way up the hill.
6.3 At the T-junction turn left (straight ahead is the old railway line and Gatehouse Station, you could take a diversion there to the viaduct). Follow this winding road with Cairnsmore National Nature Reserve on your right, over the river and through Chain Wood.
11.3 Pass the Gem Rock Museum on your right, then the road turns sharply right.
11.5 Make sure your brakes are working for the stop sign at St John Street.
Fleet Valley all the way from Gatehouse to Gatehouse Station (and beyond) more than lives up to its designation as a National Scenic Area, having a full spread of scenic elements from woodland and rivers to hills and moors.
Rusco Tower built around 1500 is a fine example of a Scottish fortified tower house, restored in the 1980’s it is still lived in.
Cairnsmore National Nature Reserve with its visitor centre, walks with fine views and sculptures in the landscape is worth a detour
Chain wood. 74 acres of beautiful native woodland flanks the road into Creetown with the bubbling Moneypool burn.
Gem Rock Museum and Café. The museum contains many fine and rare examples of crystals found in Britain, displayed alongside many other colourful specimens from around the world - with unusual items such as the 4.5 billion year old, three kilogram meteorite, the fossilised egg and dung of a dinosaur!
Click below to download a pdf sheet for the route.