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CARLINGNOSE
(N. Queensferry)

   
DISTANCE 6 Km (or 4 Miles)
   
GRADE EASY
   
UPDATED August 2001

 

 

Starting from the historic ferry port of North Queensferry, this 6 km / 4 mile run travels through the 18th century architecture of North Queensferry to the very modern, though historic scrap yard at Jamestown.
This run is suitable for mountain bikes and other bikes with strong wheels. The initial survey was carried out on my tourer without any problems.
An alternative, though longer route is available for riders who do not like climbing hills, the draw back of this is a return on a busier road. Make the effort if you can as the view from the top of Ferry Hill makes the climb worthwhile, not to mention the descent into North Queensferry!
The starting point is the car park at the base of the Forth Rail Bridge, North Queensferry.
Retrace your tracks back into North Queensferry, just before the Albert Hotel on your left is a small viewpoint with a sign post showing the location of various places of interest in the town.

1: Turn right at the hotel and head for the hill straight in front. Look for a defunct stone well (1816), with an iron drinking fountain farther on to the left. Turn left and go up the cobbled track on the left, a short though not too steep path is interspersed with large rounded stones. The well commemo- rates the Battle of Waterloo and has a iron plaque depicting the legend of Europa and the Bull - it also depicts what seems to be a local woman struggling with a foreign seaman - have a look for yourself. Behind the plaque is the town well.

2: At the top follow the path going straight on to come out at a viewpoint giving good views of the Firth and the Hound Point oil terminal .
Retrace your tracks and turn left, following the stony path down hill. An abandoned former MoD jetty can be seen to the right. Continue along the path, just before the houses on the shore is a junction. (Turning left will lead uphill, through some houses and eventually bring you out at the station, turn left to return back to the car.)
Continuing straight on, pass in front of the houses and onto the grassy bank, the path resumes on the far side of the green.
Shortly after is the first of three gates, the path at this point is narrow. Watch out for pedestrians. After passing through the last gate, go straight on and through a large red gate (usually open) and onto the shore road.

3: A crude breakwater lies at the head of the point, a view- finder, detailing places of interest is at the base of the break- water.
Follow the road around the point and take the right hand fork, follow the yellow sign posted route, failing to do this will take you through the quarry, which may be dangerous.
The path heads towards the quarry jetty then crosses a conveyer belt by a low steel bridge then continues between the scrap yard and the quarry to emerge at a traffic-calming island turn right and continue along the road - watch out for pot holes!

4: You will pass the RM Supplies, this metal reclamation (scrap) yard has had the dubious distinction of breaking up several notable ships, including the Mauretania in July 1935, the keel section of the Olympic, (which was the sister ship to the Titanic) in September 1937, and notable Royal Navy ships, Argus 1946 , Formidable 1953, Glory 1961, Implacable 1955, Pioneer 1954 and Theseus 1962. This yard is the largest purpose built ship breaking facility in the UK.
A glimpse of the ship-breaking basin can be had through a gate in the fence. Otherwise the view is just a massive pile of scrap metal.
A choice of routes is available. Turning left is the shorter and quieter route but it involves climbing up a hill. The alternative, a busier road, is to turn right, go under the railway bridge, turn left, go under the railway viaduct, to the roundabout and follow the Kingdom Cycle route sign post under the A90 and to North Queensferry. Do not go onto the approaches for the Forth Road Bridge. Follow the road, down hill to North Queensferry.

5: My choice is to turn left and climb up the hill, half way up on the left is a fenced tunnel which leads to a viewpoint over the expansive quarry workings. Views to the right as you go up the hill can be had of the Rosyth Dockyard and Grange- mouth beyond. Half way down the 20% hill and straight ahead is the old school house, just beyond that on the right is the Jubilee Memorial Trough commemorating Queen Victoria’s Diamond jubilee, 1837 to 1897.

6: Back in North Queensferry, and if you are in the mood to explore, why not head back towards the starting point but instead of turning left at the Albert Hotel, continue straight on and head for the old slip way. To your left is the lantern tower, used to guide the ferry vessels, from across the river safely into the harbour
Continue straight ahead onto the old pier, on the wall to your left is a stone mile post set into the wall, Just discernible is “Edinburgh 11, Perth 33, and I give up what the last line says.
Looking back at the house on the left, the Signal Tower House, served as a lighthouse and administrative building for the ferry.
Also on the left is the old Railway pier, where before the building of the railway bridge, passengers disembarked ferries to rejoin the railway trains .

 

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