B846/B847 via Trinafour or NCN7 via Pitlochry ?

Specific board for this popular undertaking.
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Joined: 10 Jun 2018, 10:44am

B846/B847 via Trinafour or NCN7 via Pitlochry ?

Postby martinjreed » 10 Jun 2018, 11:55am


Just planning my first LEJOG for this summer. I am planning on following NCN 7 for most of the Glasgow to Inverness section. There is one bit where I was thinking of taking a "shortcut." The shorter route I was thinking of means turning left on to the B846 after leaving Loch Tay (ie leaving the NCN 7) and following the B846 North over what looks like 3 highish peaks (East of Schiehallion). The B846 passes just West of Loch Trummel and to one of the three peaks I mentioned at Trinafour with some very steep sections (15% in places) and then following a minor road almost due north from Trinafour to rejoin the NCN 7 a few km before Loch Garry (marked as Dalnacardoch Lodge on OS map). I think this cuts off about 30km of distance but adds about 250m of climbing (over three peaks) compared to following the NCN 7 via Pitlochry.

Just wondered if anyone else has done this route (even better anyone that has done both?) and can give advice. I will be travelling with 700x38c tyres (triple crankset so have a low gear), about 20kg of luggage including camping gear, but not afraid of a bit of climbing.

Also, can anyone else comment on the state of the NCN 7 following the old A9, I have heard various stories that make is sound poor.


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Re: B846/B847 via Trinafour or NCN7 via Pitlochry ?

Postby LollyKat » 11 Jun 2018, 8:24pm

I have done the B846 many years ago and it is a lovely route - you'll enjoy it. The NCN 7 to Pitlochry on the west side of the Tummel is also very hilly and steep in parts so you might as well use the B846. I haven't done the old military road between Trinafour and Dalnacardoch but photos (via cycel.travel) show that it is tarred, and looks an attractive route.

The sections of route 7 which are actually on the old A9 are fine, apart from some traffic. Parts of the cyclepath alongside the "new" road look a bit overgrown or broken up in places but I haven't ridden them recently.

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Re: B846/B847 via Trinafour or NCN7 via Pitlochry ?

Postby keithg » 19 Jun 2018, 5:31pm

Your choice is a good shortcut. The Aberfeldy/Tummel Bridge/Trinafour/Dalnacardoch is a well tarmaced minor scenic road with some decent but manageable hills.
There is nothing much facility wise north of Tummel Bridge where there is a cafe/shop. Its a long stretch to Dalwhinnie where the next coffee stop is.
N7 alongside the A9 north of Dalnacardoch (over the Drumochter Pass) is a mixture of old road in fair condition and bike track in variable, occasionally poor condition but easily passable on bikes, just bumpy with a gravelly surface. Totally doable on your setup. On a nice day its a good ride but it can be a “little” windswept and very desolate on a bad day.
I’m the local Sustrans volunteer there, let me know how it goes, esp signage problems, I wish I had a road surfacing machine available. There are long term plans to improve this route as the A9 dualling progresses but this has been promised for years and I’m not holding my breath.
Have fun, may the wind be favourable for you!

A7 Simon
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Joined: 16 Apr 2018, 10:00pm

Re: B846/B847 via Trinafour or NCN7 via Pitlochry ?

Postby A7 Simon » 20 Jun 2018, 3:16pm

We have just returned from LEJoG, having ridden Route 77 from Perth to Logierait and Route 7 from there to Aviemore, and then from Aviemore into Inverness.

The surfaces vary from excellent to rough, but we were fine on 32 section tyres and a medium load. Lost Route 7 at Balloch but Inverness has another cycle way in from there to the city centre, where we picked up Route 1 easily enough.

Simon & Jan

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Joined: 10 Jun 2018, 10:44am

Re: B846/B847 via Trinafour or NCN7 via Pitlochry ?

Postby martinjreed » 24 Jun 2018, 4:52pm

Hi, thanks to all for the posts. I will try going via Trinafour (looks like nice scenery if the weather is good). Will report back on it and the state of the NCN 7 when I get back (late August).