Southern Upland Way (Abbey St Bathans to Cockburnspath)
About This Route
The Southern Upland Way runs from Portpatrick in Dumfries and Galloway in the west of Scotland to Cockburnspath in Scottish Borders in the east of Scotland. It is a coast to coast route through southern Scotland and one of Scotland’s Great Trails. The Scottish Borders section of the route has had gates installed where none existed before to improve multi-use access. However there are some sections of path which are unsuitable in wet weather or when the ground is soft and there are a small number of locations where access may still be difficult or impossible for horses and these are outlined below
Abbey St Bathans to Cockburnspath
NB. Parts of the Southern Upland Way between the A1 crossing and Cove are inaccessible to horses or cyclists because of narrow precipitous sections of cliff-top coastal path and a succession of steps, boardwalks and kissing gates. Minor roads provide an alternative, but the A1 crossing on the Southern Upland Way is potentially very dangerous. Riders and cyclists may prefer to follow the minor road north from the road junction between Whiteburn and Blackburn Mill (NT765652) to Ecclaw, and continue along the road to the end of the Southern Upland Way at Ecclaw. The track between Blackburn and Ecclaw may be another alternative to reduce the distance on tarmac.
Abbey St Bathans at telephone kiosk next to public road (NT 758622). Turn right onto the minor road and follow for 600 metres, turn left and use ford to cross river to rejoin the route. If river is in spate turn left onto minor road, cross bridge then turn right onto track to Shannobank. Follow track, cross the Whare burn and rejoin route in young forestry plantation.
A1 (NT 794668). A1 trunk road. Crash barrier on west side of road forces horses onto main carriageway or narrow verge of very busy road. Crossing of A1 very restricted visibility for both vehicles and non-motorised users on SUW.
Penmanshiel wood (NT 797675). Narrow gate 3 feet/ 90 cms wide at entrance to woodland.
Pease Dean (NT 792700 to NT 397706). Unusable by horses due to flight of wooden steps. Alternative route, at Pease Bridge turn right onto A1107 and first left onto minor road leading downhill to Pease Bay caravan park.
Old Linhead (NT 789708) to Cove Farm (NT 781712). Cliff top path unusable by horses due to flight of wooden steps and narrow path. Alternative route keeping to minor road.
Melrose, Morebattle, Harestanes
St Mary's Loch