Visiting the ‘Survivor Rowan’

Directions to Carrifran Wildwood

Carrifran Wildwood car park is at NT 159115. The postcode for the nearby Carrifran cottage is DG10 9LH. This is on the A708 Selkirk to Moffat road, about eight miles from Moffat and about two and a half miles on the Moffat (west) side of the National Trust for Scotland Grey Mare’s Tail Nature Reserve (which has a different and conspicuous car park).

From the M74. Leave the M74 at the Moffat exit and take A701 eastwards into the town. At the nearest (south) end of Moffat High Street turn sharp right (east) on the A708, signed to Selkirk. After nearly 6 miles pass Capplegill Farm. Stay on main road, crossing a bridge and passing cottages on left, and keep on through open country for nearly two more miles, finally crossing a bridge over the Carrifran Burn on a sharp right hand bend. Carrifran valley is on your left, and our gated and well signed car park is 50 metres uphill on your left. A coach or overflow cars can pull off on the left just before reaching the bridge, about 100 m west of the car park.

From Selkirk or Innerleithen or Eskdalemuir.  Go to intersection of A708 and B709 at the Gordon Hotel (NT 307249). Take A708 (west) towards Moffat. Pass St Mary’s Loch and Tibbie Shiels Inn and the Glen Cafe, and after 11 miles from Gordon Arms pass the Grey Mare’s Tail waterfall (NTS). Continue for 2.5 miles with forestry on your right, emerging from this suddenly at the top of a rise with a cattle grid on the summit. Carrifran valley is on your right, and our gated and well signed car park is about 250m down on your right at NT 159115. 

From Edinburgh. Two options:

a) Go south on A702 to the M74 at Abington, then south to Moffat, exit 15. Then follow directions from the M74 as above.

b) Go to Peebles and turn east on A72 (the Innerleithen and Galashiels road). Go three miles, then turn right to Cardrona at a well signed junction off a straight stretch of road. Cross the river, ignore the left turn at the roundabout into the new village and turn left on the old road, then continue for three miles to a T-junction with the B709 at Traquair. Turn right and continue for six miles to its intersection with the A708 at the Gordon Hotel (NT 307249). Then turn right on the A708 and continue as from Selkirk.

Directions to the tree

The Survivor Rowan is about 1.5 km of almost level walking from the small Carrifran car park (there’s overflow space just over the bridge 200 metres down the road). From the car park, go either way on the circular trail until you get to the old farm track that runs up the centre of the valley. Follow this through young woodland, across a wet unplanted area and continue in the woods until you gradually reach unplanted ground. You will soon see the tree on your left, on a small crag on the far side (west) of the burn. There’s a narrow foot bridge beyond it, but it’s unsafe and it’s best to view the tree from high above it on the east side. There are no leaves in winter, but you may be able to make out the cluster of suckers at its base (grown up around the scars on its trunk since the sheep and feral goats were removed) and the saplings that have sprung up from its widely scattered berries; planted trees are all further away.