Let's Walk To Aberlour - Pt 2 by Heidi M Sands
Make your way through the trees. Before you reach Aberlour you’ll pass Aberlour House on your left just above the road. It’s not possible to see the house from this point which is a shame because it’s worth seeing. It is now owned by Walkers, the biscuit company, but was, until relatively recently, the home of Gordonstoun’s preparatory school where children once played and took their lessons.
As you near Aberlour itself you’ll pass the rear of the houses and cottages on the High Street. Many have the most beautiful gardens with gates that give access onto the path along which you are walking. You’ll also be in close proximity to the river and able to appreciate its beauty and watch the many fishermen that frequent the pools and stretches here.
Walk on into the Alice Litter Park, where the path now skirts the grassy area and gives good views of the visitor centre that once was the railway station. If you’ve time and it’s open avail yourself of the information and tearoom on offer here. The locals are always keen to talk and you can learn more about the whisky industry that is all around.
Carry on along the path in the park until you reach the Victoria Bridge. It’s a real find and if you’ve never been over it, take a walk across now; it swings. The movement of the bridge is either calming or alarming depending on your point of view, but it gives a fantastic vista from the central point in both directions along the river. If you’ve a mind and the time you can continue on over the bridge and take the path behind the stone house in front of you. Keep on this path, ignoring the turning, ever upward through the trees. Follow the directional signs and keep going right, still proceeding uphill. As you reach the top by the bench, turn round and look back at Aberlour, it’s well worth the pull uphill. There is a sign just above this point that will take you to Archiestown, but for our purpose we are going to retrace our footsteps, back downhill, over the Victoria Bridge and into the Alice Litter Park.
Once over the bridge and into the park, turn right and continue on towards the new metal bridge. Don’t cross this bridge, turn left alongside the Lour Burn; it’s pretty here, especially in the spring when the flowers make it very attractive. Keep on and you’ll reach the old Packhorse Bridge, thought to be one of the oldest structures in the village. It’s not advisable to try and access the bridge, but you can marvel at the narrowness and imagine the horses that once walked by this way carrying their wares.
Peep over the wall on your left into the cemetery. It’s rumoured that Hare, one half of the infamous pair Burke and Hare may be buried here.
Cross the road in front of the Aberlour distillery; they have a shop here for those who appreciate the finer things in life. Follow the sign for the Linn Falls and walk on, ever upward passing the distillery on your right and the sound of running water. If you keep your eyes open you may even see a dipper or two at the water’s edge. Passing ancient trees the path has several steep and stony sections, take care and slow down where needed. It’s worth the toil to reach the Falls; they are most unexpected and quite beautiful. Take some time to appreciate the waterfall here and the peace and quiet that is all around.
If you’ve time continue up the steps at the side of the waterfall, taking care as you do so. There are more steep sections with smaller falls of water at which to marvel.
You’ve two choices now, you can either return the way that you came or you can turn left, keep to the central footpath, passing onto a wider path and into the top part of Aberlour. From here you may proceed downhill on a route of your own choosing until you reach the High Street. There you can access the Alice Litter Park and return to Craigellachie. You can also walk along the High Street to the end of the village and pick up the path there. Whichever way you choose to return to Craigellache, this is a walk of unfolding beauty.