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Arran Circular (clockwise) Cycle Route

Scotland > Arran > Brodick
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Cycle Route Details
Route NameArran Circular (clockwise)
Distance : miles (km)54.87  (88.30)
Posted ByJordan
Calories Burned2222.23 kcal
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Cycle Route Location
Start LocationBrodick
End LocationBrodick
Cycle Steps
Fairly taxing route around Arran but great for a day out. Best to park your car in Ardrossan and catch the Ferry over to Brodick.
Travelling clockwise involves plenty of steep climbs but an easy last 10 miles of downhill and flat. Keep in mind the last Ferry to Ardrossan in summer leaves at 7pm.
Your comments?
posted by:michael mowbrayRating : difficult :
At 60 years old I found it quite hard going but it is a great day out. Done it twice this year , my time for complete circuit is six and a half hours, like to hear from anyone
how long it takes to compare my time.

posted by:GrahamRating : difficult :
Cycled Arran circular on day 1 of a 4 day islands cycle and it took a friend and I about 6 hours to complete.

Going clockwise from Brodick, the first 20 miles or so is pretty tough with some steep climbs, then it flattens out for almost 20 miles up to Lochranza which is a fantastic cycling route.

Just after Lochranza there's another real climb and it comes when you've probably had enough, but stick with it as it's followed by the remainder of the route through scenic villages and downhill or flat sections.

It's a route that will test you at times, but once complete gives a great sense of achievement.

I'd recommend it to any touring cyclist or person who enjoys a tough challenge.

posted by:SolwebRating : difficult :
I just completed the route last week and agree it's pretty hard going.
Came off the ferry and went clockwise as the first 20 miles or so are fairly hilly but it's best to get that out of the way first as the next 20 to Lochranza are excellent and pretty flat, so you'll make good timing on this section.

After Lochranza there is a very steep hill that seems to go on for ages, but then the last 10 miles back to Brodick are all flat and you cycle through some charming villages.

Overall, very testing but very rewarding and highly recommended.

posted by:Sc0TTyRating : difficult :
First 0-2 miles = flat/easy. Then comes the biggin. You have to go up a huge mountain, when you see it, you literally want to go back.

There's three different tiers to it so don't go up and think its done! However, after this, you go back down which is AMAZING.

The next 15-20 miles is pretty much flat and downhill... going through the edges. Beautiful scenery. The last 25-30 miles are quite intense.

Never think the hills are over. You go over 1, theres another one waiting for you round the corner... if not right next to it. The last 30 miles are quite challenging and you need to be in the state for it.

Don't expect to conquer it if you arent used to cycling.

Although, you feel really good after doing it. The weather helps for sure

posted by:Douglas BeattieRating : difficult :
Cycled around Arran today, really good fun, worth the hard work!!

I got the train from Glasgow Central to Ardrossan Harbour. (Took my bike on train) Then Hoped over on the Ferry with my bike. Bikes are free to go on and it cost me £9.50 5 day open return.

Went clockwise from Brodick towards Lamlash and Whiting Bay. This first 20 miles is very much up and down, a bit of a switchback style. It is quite hilly this first bit all the way to Blackwaterfoot, where i made my first good stop (1/2hr) for some lunch.

Then on going on from Blackwater Foot to Lochranza is almost all flat, relatively easy and a really nice part of the route!! (on the west side). Eventually came into Lochranza after Pirnmill, which is smaller than I thought.

Then came a hard bit....a longish climb up hill out of Lochranza that goes on for a bit. (maybe 3 or 4 miles just up hill!!). Keep plugging away, take a break or two, use really low gears!! Then eventually its all down hill to Sannox and back to Brodick!!

It would be nicer to take several days to do the route and explore Arran a bit more. I hear there is some good MTB routes inland just pass Lamlash!! Nice to do more at lesuire or maybe even take the Ferry ove to Clonaig.

It took me about 5 and half hours to do with a good half hour break for lunch and a few couple of minute stops here and there for some photos

posted by:AdamRating : difficult :
Great day out. Having done the North circular (43 odd miles) by turning right off the ferry and coming back over the link road on a previous occasion, this time I did the full circular turning left which I'd recommend especially if there is some south in the wind which will be behind you on the more exposed western side of the island.

My time in the saddle was 4hr 15 mins with about 20 minute breaks at Blackwaterfoot (17 odd miles in) and Lochranza (40 odd miles in). Thoroughly recommend this ride. Caught the 0945 ferry from Ardrossan and was back at Brodick for the 1640 return. I hid an old pair of trainers behind the tourist info to avoid wearing my road shoes on the ferry and carrying them.

posted by:geraldineRating : difficult :
I cycled round Arran clockwise last Saturday by myself. I really enjoyed it but found it extremely challenging-I nearly gave up at the hills round Lochranza . It took me 8 hours but I wasnt rushing round and the wind was really strong and against me most of the way.

posted by:Alan NicholsonRating : difficult :
My father and I do this route annually, I usually do a few solo trips as well. Its a great day and agree with other comments its challenging. We manage to complete it in around 5hrs.

Majority of hills are to the south so hit them first. We normally stop for lunch at Lochranza hotel to recharge before hitting the big hill in the North.

Top tips - Watch your descent into Lagg, its easy to pick up good speed before a sudden and steep drop immediately followed by a tight turn.

If there is a strong wind your always better to cycle clockwise - the most exposed section is the west coast and you don’t want to be caught with the wind in your face here.

Keep your eyes on the road. Arran has wonderful scenery and very little traffic but in some sections the state of the road is awful. If your on a road bike there are pot holes all over the place.

Most reasonable cyclists will be able to exceed 40mph on the decent off the hill from Lochranza but the road surface changes at the bottom, from smooth tarmac to an old asphalt that is loose and worn. Requires 100% concentration to navigate at speed !!


posted by:Neil TRating : difficult :
Done this for a charity event in June as part of the Anual Bike 'n' Hike which involves the 55 mile cycle around the Island then climb Goat Fell right after..

The Cycle is great but put a bit of training in first as is is quite challenging on the legs. I managed the Cycle in 3hrs 22mins which I was more than chuffed with beating last years time by 38mins..

Goat Fell took 2hrs 35mins and after doing both I was ready for a Pint ;-)

I try and do the cycle a couple of times a year now..

posted by:Alex HamiltonRating : difficult :
whats best way to do this route.? clockwisw or anti clock- wise?

doing end feb for vanessa riddle appeal

posted by:lexjahRating : difficult :
Done this on sunday 26/2/12- Clockwise from harbour at brodick... Im not a very experienced, only took it up again last year, and at 37, aint the fittest either but my time was 6hrs, and the weather was on my side.
First 20 miles pretty flat, with a few hills, after Blackwaterfoot, a pleasant flat run for about 18 miles, then yes after Lochranza, a steep and sore hill that will test you. Worse if you go anti clockwise as the run down the otherside was the highlight for me.. lol.
last 10-12 miles, yes flat with a run through some nice villages.

posted by:John WharrieRating : difficult :
Done this route on 31/3/12 with my mate, the road around to Blackwaterfoot has many testing hills, after this you have a couple of climbs then a long stretch at sea level with one climb before you reach Lochranza, then comes the big one 650 feet climb over the next 2 and a half miles, after this you get a long run down towards Sannox, which was really good as the road surface has been renewed and you can get a really good speed without worrying about potholes, after Sannox you get an easy run mainly at sea level back to Brodick. Our time on the road was 4 1/2 hours which we were really happy with as this was our first time doing this course.

posted by:Charles MacQueenRating : difficult :
Took part in a cycle organised by wifes work. Unfortunately did not complete the route due to time constraints (last ferry off island) and more likely due to having a mountain bike. However I did manage to get to Pirnmill which is more than halfway.
I thoroughly enjoyed the route and it was challenging in places but I intend to return and complete later on this year.

posted by:jim reidRating : difficult :
done this on 15/9/12 took train to Ardrossan ( 08.45) and ferry to Brodick. arrived 10.40........started in clockwise direction at 11.00am . first 20 miles up and down hills , first time ever doing this mileage and with mountain bike ....don"t be put off with some of comments doing it with mountain bike but a lot lot tougher.....first break at Blackwaterfoot....15 minutes and next stop at Lochranza ....15 minutes were I discovered how to us my gears properly ( had been cycling in low gears from start). ....left lochranza at 15.30 and next 2 miles uphill.....hard going.....but once over the top it was downhill all the way,,,great road surface and picked up speeds of about 30/40 mph ,,,,,,last 7 miles back to Brodick... bad road surface but made it back to get the 16.40 ferry by seconds yes seconds ....last person on boat.....all in all great days cycling and if used gears properly from start would have done it approx 30 minutes quicker. will go back and try it again next year with road bike......age 55.....good fitness level.......tough in stages and not a lot of traffic on road..which was good. ......

posted by:gerald davidsonRating : difficult :
went clockwise from blackwaterfoot Oct 2012 returning to same. 5hrs 34min cycle time, around 6hrs to do trip. a lovely ride in good weather. Steepish and long out of lochranza but the run down the other side one of those unforgettable moments. 57 year old with a cheapish trek road bike, if I can do it so can you! a beautiful island and a great way to see it.

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