Cycling in Helensburgh & Lomond

Helensburgh and Lomond has lots of great bike trails including both on-road and off-road routes.

Roads and Cycle Paths

There are lots of routes in this area. 2 short on-road trails have been developed by the John Muir Way – the Glen Fruin Loop and the Helensburgh to Balloch Loop.

For a signposted trail with sites of interest along the way there is the Clyde Sea Lochs Trail, a 65 miles / 104 km self-guided sightseeing tour linking coastal communities along the Clyde Coast between Dumbarton and Arrochar.

The West Loch Lomond Cycle Path is a 17 mile cycleway and footpath that runs from Balloch at the southern tip of Loch Lomond to Tarbet. The path is traffic-free for most of the way, with two short stretches on minor roads, and is suitable for cyclists, walkers, wheelchair users and horse riders.

Photo of road cyclist, taken looking up against the sky. Image souce: https://pixabay.com/photos/cycling-cyclist-bicycle-rider-664753/

There are also lots of other routes and loops through the local glens and round the Rosneath Peninsula – check out resources like BikeMap and Komoot for routes uploaded by users.

Photo of two people bikepacking along a trail through woods. Image source: https://pixabay.com/photos/cycling-leisure-recovery-forest-2520007/

Bikepacking

Helensburgh and Lomond is also lucky to feature in a number of bikepacking trails. The John Muir Way and Three Lochs Way are both part of Scotland’s Great Trails, and multi-use notes are available, with alternative sections for cyclists also suggested. These 2 routes meet up in Helensburgh, and you can also link on to other routes such as the Loch Lomond and Cowal Way. 

There is also the 407 miles / 655 km Wild About Argyll Trail, a circular route which can be done from Helensburgh – full details are at the Bikepacking Scotland website.

Wild About Argyll Bikepacking Trail

Jenny Graham, Scottish adventurer and round the world cyclist, took Global Cycling Network presenter Manon Lloyd, a former racer and Team GB track competitor, on a 2 day adventure on the WAA Trail, starting in Helensburgh. Watch their video to see their amazing adventure (whatever the weather!), all only a short journey from the centre of Glasgow on the ScotRail Highland Explorer Train.

The Wild About Argyll Trail and John Muir Way have both recently been featured in the Top 10 bikepacking routes in Scotland.

For some more inspiration, check out this film by Markus Stitz of Backpacking Scotland about bikepacking in Argyll, and you can also find a new film about the John Muir Way on YouTube – Unhurried.

Mountain Biking

There are three main local areas with mapped mountain bike trails – Highlandman’s Woods in Helensburgh, Ben Bowie, and around Arrochar. Visit our Mountain Biking page for overviews of these areas.

Getting here

Helensburgh and Lomond is well served by transport connections, and it is possible to do one way routes and day routes linking up with these. There are also local suppliers offering bike hire, sales and servicing who will also be able to recommend routes – see our list of useful links at the bottom of this page.

Scotrail has introduced new designated carriages for up to 26 bikes and large sporting equipment on the West Highland Line allowing riders to bring their own equipment.

Helensburgh Central has direct trains to Glasgow (half hourly service, approx. 45 minutes) and Edinburgh (approx 2 hours). Cardross is also on this line. Timetables can be found at the ScotRail website. Helensburgh Upper, as well as Garelochhead, Arrochar & Tarbet and Ardlui are on the world famous West Highland Line, one of the world’s great scenic railway lines. These are also stops on the Caledonian Sleeper Highlander Route, meaning travellers can get between London and Helensburgh and Lomond overnight. See our page on Getting to Helensburgh and Lomond for more info.

Local Suppliers

Other Useful Links

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