Thornhill to Townhead Loop

Cycling Route

Thornhill to Townhead Loop


Just outside of Thornhill is Cample and it’s interesting art centre Cample Line. From there you start climbing gently up to the edge of Ae Forest and the beautiful Loch Ettrick.

The route then takes you across the high plateaux with views of the Lowther Hills. These were so important for the mining of lead, silver and gold over many centuries. At the top of the climb, you will have stunning views back across the Nith Valley. Your loop closes with an exhilarating descent down to Thornhill. On your way down you have the option to do a little detour to the picturesque castle ruin - Morton Castle.

16.5mi / 27km
Total climb:
1,443ft / 440m
Total descent:
1,443ft / 440m
Towns along route:
Our best efforts have been made to ensure the accuracy of data, however the data and geographic information contained along route lines and on maps should be used for informational purposes only.

What you'll see


Towns & Villages

The town of Thornhill sits south of Sanquhar and north of Dumfries on the main A76 road.

Ae Forest - Ae Village

Forests, Parks & Gardens

The scenic Forest of Ae is located between Nithsdale and Annandale, with the first trees being planted in the 1920s.

Loch Ettrick - Thornhill

Animals & Wildlife, Scenic Views

Loch Ettrick sits within the heart of the Forest of Ae, 7km east southeast of Thornhill. The loch is stocked with rainbow and blue trout.

Morton Castle - Morton Loch


Due to access restrictions, there is currently no visitor access to the castle