The Famous Campsie Glen, Clachan of Campsie near Appletree Cottage
The famous Campsie Glen is accesses from the hamlet of Clachan of Campsie - about half an hour drive from Appletree Cottage. (Clachan is a Scots word for village or hamlet)
We drove to Strathblane and then took the turning at the roundabout in the village signposted Lenzie and Kirkintilloch. About another ten minutes took us to a turn off to the left signposted Clachan of Campsie, immediately after the village of Haughhead. About five hundred yards up this road we parked and walked into the main square.
The three main businesses in Clachan of Campsie are Sonas Cafe Bistro, the excellent bike shop Wheelcraft and an art gallery. There is also the remains of the very ancient Church of St. Machan dating back to the twelve hundreds when it was reputedly founded adjacent to the grave of the saint.
The bell from the church was mounted in a stone surround in the village but unfortunately disappeared. Although tiny, Clachan of Campsie is the terminus of the X85 bus from Buchanan Bus Station in Glasgow.
After a quick snack in Sonas Cafe we set of to explore Campsie Glen. The path starts from the corner of the building low on the right just after the Art Gallery.
As we enter the glen, we see many mountain cyclists descending the rough path on the hillside. With many leaps and jumps they make their hazardous way to the bottom
As we walk up the glen a wide burn (river) flows gently southwards. This is the Endrick Water which makes its way past Strathblane, Croftamie and Drymen to end its journey on the south eastern shore of Loch Lomond.
Soon we come to the first big waterfall. This is popular with swimmers in summer although in early April when we visited the water is a tad cold. Campsie Glen is close to Lennoxtown which was very industrial in the nineteenth century with mining, chemical works and textile printing. A visit to the glen was a relief day out in the country and very popular not just with the local inhabitants but with visitors from Glasgow who would travel there by rail to Campsie Glen railway station on the Aberfoyle line.
In former years a path followed the burn right up to the view point on the B822 high up above. However, rockfalls and fallen trees have blocked the river side path and an alternative route now clings to the hillside higher above.
The Glen is still popular. Here and there is evidence of camp fires and there are many fallen trees. It wouldn't take much to bring this special beauty spot back to its former splendour.