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66. Fala Moor

start: Heriot
distance: 26 miles
OS map: 66

Fala Moor route mapThis is mostly on road, other than the section across Fala Moor which is a farm track. The status of this part of the route is not clear; there doesn't appear to be an access problem but there are grouse butts on the moor so it would be probably best avoided in the shooting season.

Start from Heriot and head N on the A7 for a few hundred yards, then turn R up an unsigned road to Nettlingflat and, further on, Brothershiels farm. As you reach the farm, turn L to follow a track heading N towards Fala Moor. Crossing the moor, you'll see the remains of a tower over to your L.

The track goes downhill now through some trees to emerge on the A68. Turn L then almost immediately R into Fala village by the play area. You need to take the minor road which starts off running parallel to the main road towards Fala Dam. At the bottom of the hill turn R up a narrow lane. You're heading towards Whitburgh House with a white dovecot as you approach it.

Pass the entrance to the house, heading uphill, to a sharp L bend. The map shows a trig point here and your challenge is to find it. Let me know if you do but, in any event, there are fine views over the Forth.

Aim for Whitburgh Mains now, then turn L to meet the A68. Turn R onto the main road but only for a few yards to turn L for Crichton. You might want to take a slight diversion and cycle along to see Crichton Castle.

Like many Scottish castles, the history of Crichton is convoluted. It began life in the 14th century as a tower and has been adapted and enlarged by its various owners. An interesting feature is the impressive Italian decorative stonework in the dining room.

From the village, fork R to go steeply down into a glen then steeply up the other side. There are more views of the castle over to your L. At the crossroads (364 607) turn L for North Middleton and the Middleton Inn.

Go straight over the A7 then turn L past the lime works. You're heading uphill to join the B7007 going through the Moorfoot Hills. Just before you reach the high point of the road, there's a bend from which you should get views of North Berwick Law, Fife, Arthur's Seat, the Pentlands and Gladhouse Reservoir.

You have a fine run now down to the valley. Cross the bridge then turn L to follow Heriot Water back to the start of the route.

jb, galashiels

Download GPS data in GPX format.

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