The Circuit of St Mary's Loch

You need to log in as a member of Walkingworld to access the details for this walk. Join or log in above if you are already a member. Access is available to Walkingworld subscribers or you can buy the walk individually for £1.95 once you are logged in.


At around three miles long and forty metres deep, St Mary's Loch is the largest natural loch in the Borders area.

Arguably the best feature of this walk is its capacity for ever-changing and beautiful views across St Mary's Loch. Beginning at the southern end of the loch, the walk follows an anti-clockwise circuit with no real gradients other than the (optional) steep climb up to the old St Mary's graveyard on the return leg. This climb is well worth the effort though, as the views up and down the loch from here are quite stunning.

As for wildlife, small brown meadow pipits are the most common bird to be seen, but occasionally buzzard, short-eared Owl and black grouse may also be spotted. On the loch itself, a few duck such as mallard, pochard and goosander may be seen and during the winter months, goldenye and whooper swans also visit.

Scotland - South Scotland - Scottish Borders - Broughton and Culter Hills


Birds, Great Views, Hills or Fells, Lake/Loch, Mostly Flat, Wildlife
19/03/2011 - Jonathan Marshall

I would agree with the previous commentator. The first half of the walk is lovely, peaceful, scenic, quiet - but the second half of the walk on the road is a nightmare! My partner, dog and I had an awful time walking on the road on the way back, with many blind corners to negotiate. Even if you don't have a dog, the walk back via the road is at times dangerous. I would recommend simply walking back the way you came BEFORE the road. One further comment: the graveyard is well worth a visit, doesn't require much road walking and is so atmospheric. You can then simply return back the way you came.

19/11/2010 - AK Bryce

Let me just start by saying I have absolutely NO sense of direction - I always get lost, even on routes I've been before! The directions/photos from the guide were spot on - accurate & easy to follow. I walked this in November with my Border Collie, Joey. It was very quiet & I didn't pass any other walkers. The route that runs parallel to the loch is beautiful & the way the hills reflect in the water is lovely. The only downside is that for the 2nd half of the route, you have to come back via the road - which was no fun for me or for Joey! It is not very picturesque & a bit of a pain having to stop everytime a car passed. If walking this route again, I would simply go back the way I came as it is much prettier & better for dogs as they stay off the road. Saw some ducks, rabbits & swans but that was about all on the wildlife front. There were a few sheepies/cows in fields etc but as long as you can control your dog, there shouldn't be a problem. I didn't have time to go up to the graveyard as daylight was fading fast so the route took me 2hrs 20min's but I was walking quite briskly. Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this walk - really easy, nice worn path. Beautiful views & my dog Joey seemed to really enjoy himself. Will walk again soon!