This is a fine route that travels into, and out of, quiet valleys. The off-road section of the route forms part of the John Buchan Way which runs between Peebles and Broughton.
Start at Stobo and there's a small parking area near Stobo Kirk. The kirk itself is well worth a few moments of your time. It's one of the oldest kirks in the area and was built in the 12th century to replace the previous one built 500 years or more before that. Th eoutside may not seem too impressive, but take a peek inside if you can...
Many of the gravestones feature interesting carved figures; a soldier with musket, for example. Don't miss the 'jougs' just by the porch!
If you're looking for an easier option then go along the main road and take the track past Sobo Castle hotel and on up the valley. Our route though goes along the main road to the left, but just for a short way before turning off to the left following the signed John Buchan Way route.
The trail will take you up to a shoulder on the lower slopes of Penvalla. It's here that you'll get your first views across to Trahenna Hill and down into the Hopeshead valley. The trail contours along and then easily downhill before rising slightly to join the main track up the valley.
From Stobo Hopehead, th path climbs gently up to the saddle between Hammer Head and Broomy Side. Pause to take in the views before starting down the long grassy trail to emerge in Broughton on the A701.
There is a John Buchan Centre at the south end of the village but our route turns off left heading on the minor road towards Dreva Muirburn. Climb up over a small shoulder and roll easily along to join the B712 from where it's about 2.5km back along to the start.
john b, galashiels
Download GPS data in GPX format.