Top 10 Mountain Bike Trails in Scotland

Majestic mountains, glorious glens and fantastic forests await in the off-road pedalling paradise that is Scotland. The country is home to some of the UK’s most incredible off-road adventures, and we’ve chosen 10 of our favourites in this guide.

If you’re planning a trip to Scotland or are simply interested in what this amazing country can offer mountain bike riders, then read on.

Mountain biking in Scotland

Scotland is an incredible place, with thousands of square miles of countryside filled with wild rivers, ruins and relics. You can stand back and enjoy the view, or jump straight in and watch it whiz by from the cockpit of your mountain bike.

Arguably, Scotland has fewer trails centres than Wales or England, and they can be a challenge to get too, but make the effort, and you’ll be rewarded by some of the most remarkable rides in the world. If you’re an advanced rider or newbie, there’s a trail for you in Scotland.

When planning your trip up north, check out Visit Scotland. As well as a useful list of trails centres, you’ll find essential travel information and advice on accommodation. You can also find things to fill your time when you’re off the bike too.

Many of the trails we feature are owned and managed by Forestry Commission Scotland, so their website is well worth visiting. When riding in Scotland, particularly off the beaten track, you should abide by the ‘Do the Ride Thing’ code. Read up before you ride and ensure you leave the trails as you found them.

Like the rest of the country (and the world) trails in Scotland are graded by colour according to their difficulty, so choosing the most suitable one should be simple enough.


Travelling to Scotland by car is a doddle, with the M6 motorway depositing you in the centre of the country, near its two main cities, Edinburgh and Glasgow. If you’re planning on hitting the highlands, you’ll find the road network well maintained and an absolute pleasure to drive. The ever-changing scenery in Scotland is stunning and offers a feast for the eyes at any time of the year.

The trails centres in this guide are typically in rural areas where road conditions can vary, so drive cautiously. The weather in Scotland can be changeable, so plan your trip and be prepared. Drive carefully on country roads, and be ready for trees, branches, fords and floods.

Before you travel, it’s worth giving your car a check over (or even better, let us do it for you) to ensure it’s in tip-top mechanical condition. It’s especially important if you’re travelling to some of the more remote areas of Scotland that you ensure your tyres, wipers and battery are all in excellent condition before you set off.


Riding in Scotland is wild and wonderful, but you’ll need to be prepared for anything and everything. Ensure you have all you need for your journey, including all the tools, tubes, food and drink for your time away. Always pack a fully-charged mobile phone as well.

The weather in Scotland is best described as changeable, with temperatures likely to drop considerably, particularly in the mountains. Pack suitable clothing and always wear a well-fitted bike helmet and gloves. We recommend layering up while you ride.

The trails and tracks in this guide are popular with riders and should be well-marked, but always pack a map or a GPS, in case you run into trouble. If you’re going deep off-road, be sure to tell somewhere where you’re going and when you’ll be back.

The trails in this guide are suitable for hardtails, full-suspension bikes and electric mountain bikes. You should ensure your bike is serviced and in perfect running order before setting off. Some of the routes featured are in remote areas where support may be a challenge, so be prepared – even if it means riding with more equipment than you’re used to.

If you’re handy with a spanner, you’ll find everything you need to service and maintain your bike at Halfords. Or alternatively, book your bike in for a mountain bike service and let us take care of it for you.

Finally, if you’re riding routes for the first time, be cautious and considerate. Some of the trails are tough, even for the most advanced mountain bike riders. Check out our guide to safe mountain bike riding if you need a refresher on how to maximise enjoyment and minimise injuries.

Top 10 Mountain Bike Trails in Scotland

Here, in no particular order, are our top 10 mountain bike trails in Scotland.

Tweed Valley

The home of mountain biking in Scotland, Tweed Valley is internationally recognised for its purpose-built mountain bike trails. There are trails at Glentress for novices and newbies, as well as more challenging singletrack routes at Innerleithen. If you’re truly brave of heart, you can head to the Golf Course trails, which were used for the 2015 Enduro World Series.

The centre has all the facilities you’ll need, as well as offering bike hire, guided rides and bike coaching.


Making up one of the famous 7Stanes, Newcastleton is based in the Kielder Forest just over the border in Scotland, making it one of the most accessible trails for southerners. Families can take their time tackling the picturesque blue route, while adrenaline junkies can head for the more challenging 14-mile red route. Parking is free, but there’s little else here apart from mile after mile of incomparable countryside, so pack what you need.


It’s hard to pick our favourites from the 7Stanes, but Dalbeattie with its granite rocks and coastal views is one. Choose from the green-graded Ironhash Trail, blue-graded Moyle Hill Trail and red-graded Hardrock Trail, and you’ll enjoy riding among wonderful woodland and glorious granite. Start at the 7Stanes Dalbeattie car park and bring everything you need.

Aberfoyle Bike Park

Fast becoming one of Scotland’s worst-kept mountain biking secrets, Aberfoyle Bike Park contains 700 metres of technical track, as well as blue, orange (extreme downhill) and brutal black-graded trails. You won’t read much about this online, but it’s worth the effort to find.

Cathkin Braes Country Park

Located a short drive from the centre of glorious Glasgow, the Cathkin Braes Country Park has a 5.5km long, purpose-built mountain bike track that was used for the 2014 Commonwealth Games. Designed by Phil Saxena, the world-renowned mountain bike course designer, it’s fast, furious and fun.

Fort William

If you’re serious about mountain biking, you’ll want to pay a visit to Fort William’s Nevis Range once in your life. A World Cup venue, you’ll find three pro race courses ready and waiting to ride, as well as a huge variety of trails and tracks suitable for riders of all ages and abilities. Serious about downhill? Then don’t miss The Red Giant, 543m of downhill that dreams are made of.


Waterfalls? Check. Mountains? Check. Incredible experiences? Check. Torridon’s Loch Clair will provide the perfect Instagram image, but why bother when the riding is this good? Torridon is suitable for experienced riders capable of dealing with extreme conditions. Riding here is tough, but you’re rewarded with some of the most incredible views the highlands offer. Be prepared here and be careful. It’s not just the scenery that could take your breath away.

Comrie Croft Trails

If you’re searching for red and black graded singletrack, you’ll find miles and miles at Comrie Croft Trails. A little over an hour’s drive from both Edinburgh and Glasgow, our favourite is the black-graded Hairy Coo Black. There are 11 routes to choose from (three blue, five red and three black) which is more than enough for a full day’s riding.

Learning Red Rocks

If you’re a beginner or intermediate rider, you’ll be able to perfect your pedalling and pumping at Learnie Red Rocks. The purpose-built mountain bike tracks provide a gentle introduction to off-road riding. They’re short enough that you can ride them multiple times in a morning, improving as you go. More advanced mountain bikers should head to the black-graded Learnie Hill Trail. Described as one of Scotland’s trickiest blacks, it’s sure to get the heart pumping and the blood flowing.

Moray Monster Trails

Unleash the beast within on the Moray Monster trails. Whether you’re looking for a basic blue track or a beast of a black trail, you’ll find it here. The Gully Monster is short at 1.5 miles but is a tricky and testing black-graded run that will push you to your limits. Advanced riders and adrenaline junkies should check out the Fochabers Freeride, which is packed full of scary features that will amaze and inspire you.

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