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LOCH LOMOND BIRD RESERVE, the shores of Loch Lomond below Gartocharn.

ACCESS : Take Ross and Aber Road or San Makesson Road which come off the Old Military Road (A811) and skirt Gartocharn in the direction of Loch Lomond. From this there is a branch road, actually a continuation of San Makesson Road to the shore. This point has a small grassed traffic island and signs to the reserve. Unfortunately parking here is almost non-existent. You will need to park further up the road. An alternative is to park at the community centre in the village and take a path from behind the centre through farmland - itself pleasant, but sometimes muddy. Once at the shore the path is well set out and pleasant. 

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A short pleasant walk takes you to this part of the southernmost shores of Loch Lomond and this is where you will find the Bird Reserve. The path takes you through mature trees alongside the shore. As you get towards the end of the path it loops back on itself. You are by now very close to Endrick Water and farmland with Conic Hill in the distance. 

At the point at which you reach the reserve there is a small beach. The water here is shallow and a nice place for a dip. 

To quote the RSPB who manage it : 

The Nature Hub opens seven days 10.00am-4.00pm (11.00am-3.00pm in winter)

RSPB Scotland Loch Lomond is a special place for wildlife. Located on the south-east shores of the loch, the site has a variety of habitats from ancient woodlands to wildflower meadows and swampy grasslands. RSPB Scotland has been managing the site in partnership with Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park and Scottish Natural Heritage since 2012 to make it an even better home for nature.

The Airey woodland trail winds through the woodlands, past a small pond and out into a field nicknamed 'Orchid Field' because of the amount of orchids found here in the summer. The Viewpoint Path is fully accessible and leads to views of Ben Lomond and Surrounding Hills while overlooking the fen and woodlands of the reserve. The Nature Hub is open 10.00am – 4.00pm (11.00am – 3.00pm in Winter) seven days a week. [RSPB].

The distant hills and Inchmurrin ahead and Inchcailloch to the right  from the water's edge.

The small beach. 

Conic Hill beyond.

The wetlands of Endrick Water where it enters the Loch with some happy cattle. The path stops short of this, but you should be able to see various wading birds there. 

GAROCHARN.ORG website which has further RSPB information :  https://gartocharn.org/rspb-loch-lomond

RSPB website : https://www.rspb.org.uk/reserves-and-events/reserves-a-z/loch-lomond/

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