Tour de Galloway day 7 (final stage): Newton Stewart Loop

Route – Newton Stewart to Minnigaff to Creebridge to Newton Stewart. For route map click here.

See route on Strava.

  • Weather – mainly cloudy but warm and dry with very little wind.
  • Bike type – road bike
  • Distance travelled – 9.35 miles
  • Riding time – 39 minutes
  • Maximum speed – 26.2 mph
  • Average speed – 14.4 mph
  • Height climbed – 476 feet

On the final day of our summer holiday in Galloway, Dad and I just had time for a short cycle around the Newton Stewart area. Since I had been the quickest over the first 6 days of the “tour”, the final stage was more or less a procession to celebrate my amazing victory over Dad… Anyway, the route may have been short but it turned out to be one of the most pleasant of the entire week.

We started off by following the river Cree northwards on the cycle path of Cycle Route no.73 for the mile or so into Newton Stewart. The path ends when you reach Aldi and Sainsburys and we then had to cycle through a car park and along a back street until it ran out and rejoined the main road through town. There we turned right and then right again over the old bridge across the River Cree. Just over the bridge we then turned left and followed the minor road out of town. We cycled gradually uphill along the narrow, fern-lined road, through the trees for a mile or before the trees parted to give us a magnificent view northwards across the valley to Glen Trool away in the distance. It was

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one of the best views we’d had all week and the highest mountain in the region The Merrick was clearly visible. The road was completely deserted and was so peaceful to cycle on. After a few miles we reached the high point on the road and turned a corner to the right and one of the most impressive hills in the area – Cairnsmore of Fleet – came into view. After seeing this hill from a distance and from other angles earlier in the week, the close up “side view” was an unexpected surprise. After that we sped down the slight hill to the junction with the A712 road.

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The A712 road is commonly known as the Queens Way and is a stunning road to travel on through the heart of the Galloway Forest from New Galloway to Newton Stewart. Despite being an “A” road it is quite quiet and looks like it would be a fantastic road to cycle on. Today though, we only had time to ride on the few miles back to Newton Stewart and that was so much fun. It was a lovely road surface, all slightly downhill and very fast with nice views and it was so quiet that we didn’t see any traffic whatsoever. The perfect cycling road you might say… Soon, we turned right and cycled through Creebridge on the outskirts of Newton Stewart and back across the bridge into Newton Stewart again. This time we avoided the cycle path and rode up the main street through town and back to Nether Barr via the fairly quiet A714 road.

It was a very short but rather nice way to end our Tour de Galloway. Galloway is an amazing area of Scotland to go on holiday. If you like peace and quiet, beautiful beaches, walking in the hills and forests and most importantly, cycling, you would love it there. I’ll definitely be returning there soon!

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