Last week I wrote about Shinrin-yoku, or the art of forest bathing. I hope you found it interesting! I am sure many of you have made the New Year’s resolution to be more active in 2016 and one of the best way to achieve your resolutions is to make them specific. For example, rather than saying I want to be more active, you could say, I want to visit a different Scottish Wildlife Trust reserve each month this year!
To give you a helping hand I thought I would speak to our Head of Reserves, Alan Anderson and find out his top 5 woodland reserves close(ish) to the central belt (and not including Falls of Clyde because we already know what an amazing place it is). His suggestions (in no particular order) are:
1. Carron Glen near Denny
A beautiful native oak and ash woodland along a steep-sided gorge carved by the River Carron (Glasgow 30mins, Edinburgh 1hr).
2. Loch Ardinning near Strathblane
A picturesque, visitor-friendly wildlife haven with areas of wetland, woodland, grassland and moorland (Glasgow 30mins, Edinburgh 1hr 30mins).
3. Pease Dean near Dunbar
A beautiful, ancient semi-natural woodland, in spring the woodland floor is cloaked with a bluebell, primrose and wood anemone blanket (Glasgow 1hr 30mins, Edinburgh 50mins).
4. Ayr Gorge Woodlands near Mauchline
A steep ravine of sandstone cliffs covered mainly with oak, ash and some very old majestic beeches. It is one of the most important ancient woodlands in Ayrshire for invertebrates, plants, fungi and bats (Glasgow 45mins, Edinburgh 1hr 45mins).
5. Glen Moss near Kilmacolm
Has areas of marshland, woodland and wet heath with open water and sheltered, shallow pools. It is a natural haven for songbirds, waterfowl, amphibians and insects (Glasgow 30mins, Edinburgh 1hr 30mins).
Of course as Falls of Clyde Ranger my top woodland reserve would be the Falls of Clyde but it is always a treat to visit other places! To find out more about these woodland reserves and other reserves managed by the Scottish Wildlife Trust, visit our website www.scottishwildlifetrust.org.uk.
Laura Preston – Scottish Wildlife Trust, Falls of Clyde Ranger
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