Deeside Way

We’ve just been out for a cycle ride on Deeside Way. This is the old train line which used to ferry Queen Victoria and entourage out to Balmoral Castle every summer. It was closed in the 60s and has recently been converted into a cycling/walking path.

The pathway goes all the way out to Ballater, about 65km inland and up to an elevation of 200m above sea level. We went just under a quarter of the way and then came back again, making a trip of 30km. I mapped the ride on mapmyride:


One day I’d like to cycle all the way out to Ballater. We’d do it in two days I think, cycling first to Banchory and staying there overnight, then Banchory to Ballater the next day. Cycling on a dedicated path like this is miles better than dodging cars and pedestrians on the streets around Aberdeen. It was a truly wonderful way to spend the afternoon and I loved every minute of it. Although I have come home with a sore bum, it was invigorating and well, there’s really no better way to spend an afternoon. Did I already say that? Cycling is such an accessible sport and you can enjoy it at any age. I just wish town planners gave cyclists a higher priority.

Here are some pics:


Ben says this is the “don’t fuck with me pic”:


Elizabeth fell asleep:


The River Dee:




We stopped at one point to let the kids free-range for a bit and I decided to have a go in Busby. It’s quite cosy in there:



11 responses to “Deeside Way”

  1. Yes, traffic is the main thing that puts me off cycling (that and all the hills and cobbles in Lewes). It’s good that you have such a great unbroken stretch to cycle on. People cycle on the South Downs, but that’s quite hard core too, with people flying over hills and grass, not for me either.

    1. Cobblestones are a pain to cycle on. We have a few streets here like that too and I try to avoid them. Deeside Way is very good for families and people who are not used to cycling.

  2. I think everyone out on bikes today had a good day in the sunshine, well, in the UK anyway as watched a bit of the Giro d’Italia where it poured down today
    That looks like a great path, and as well as the absence of traffic the gentle gradients must be nice to ride too

    1. It’s a lovely path. There are a few places where it’s unsealed and you have to cycle over gravel but it all adds to the fun.

  3. Great post! Glad to see you had an enjoyable outing. However, it doesn’t sen fair that you carry all the load. Good for you for doing 30 km on that bike with 2 kids aboard. No wonder your bum is sore 🙂

    1. Ben does offer to swap bikes whenever I want but I’m not very good at changing from a long bike to a regular bike. It does take a bit of getting used to and I’m now very used to the longer bike so swapping back to a regular bike feels very strange. I also like the extra exercise and I’m sure I’ve got stronger legs now because of it.

  4. […] our terrific bicycle ride on Saturday I was thinking about what it is that’s so good about cycling from one place to another. […]

  5. It took me a while to realize Deeside is the side of river Dee. Great pics!

    1. Yep! It follows the river all the way out to Ballater which is about 40 miles from Aberdeen.

  6. …Deeside is by the side of river Dee….

  7. […] went for another ride this afternoon along the Deeside cycleway. It was raining all morning and so I had to force a somewhat reluctant husband to join me. The kids […]

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