Monday 25th March 2024

Fochabers to Boat o’ Brig (11.8 miles).

Once more Anne and I are on holiday at Portknockie. We are staying in a lovely cottage on Park Street. The forecast for today was poor, for showers, but as it was not raining here we decided to have a go at walking another section of the Speyside Way. We had reached Fochabers last October so we wanted to walk from Fochabers to Boat o’ Brig. We drove to Fochabers and parked just off Ordiquish Road.

I was very unprepared for the walk and we parked at the wrong place, though it worked out better for our return walk. We walked back and fore a bit before arriving at the signpost we had reached the last time here.

We followed the signs till we reached this one. The GPS track on my Garmin Etrex 20, from Walk Highlands, said go straight on. The signpost said go left. We asked a girl walking a dog. She said straight on was correct but the track disappeared where it was supposed to bear left near the Spey. We followed another track further on to the left which reached a dead end at what was called “The Intake”. You can see that from the strange GPX plot on the map.

So we retraced our steps back to the sign we should have followed.

We then reached the road to Ordiequish. It seems to be an area and can be spelled with or without the ‘e’.

This was one of the few glimpses of the Spey we had all day.

We stopped for our lunch at a place called “Earth Pillars”! We sat on a log. Just as we left it started to rain, very lightly. It stayed like this for the rest of the walk but didn’t really wet us.

Just beyond “Earth Pillars” was this ‘Z’ bend. It was very steep and a hard walk.

I love the ruined houses that you see in the north.

Eventually we came out of forest and could see the Spey Valley.

We came to a road that branched left but we went straight on. A little beyond the junction was Cairnty House.

It was a steep decent to Boat o’ Brig. Therefore a steep ascent on the way back!

This is the railway bridge over the Spey at Boat o’ Brig.

The road bridge.

We then retraced our steps back the way we had come. We stopped to eat near the “Earth Pillars”. This is supposed to show the sea coming into view.

We just followed Ordiquish Road back to the car so that was easier than the way out. But that is another section of the Speydside Way completed. If we get the weather we will try and do the section from Boat o’ Brig to Craigellachie later in the week.

I ‘borrowed’ the map from Maximum Adventure’s website.

So now we have done

1. Buckie to PortgordonSunday 17th April 2022
2. Portgordon to SpeybayWednesday 20th April 2022
3. Speybay to FochabersSaturday 16th April 2022
4. Fochabers to Boat o’ Brigtoday

Sections 1 & 2 were done as part of the ‘Moray Coastal Trail’. The two walks overlap.