Mountain biking at Whitelee
The windfarm tracks and trails are un-graded but the majority of them would be graded as green to blue grade levels by the International Mountain Biking Association. Some steeper sections of old forest road may be more challenging.
For a site map and popular route guides for all pursuits please see our Route Maps page.
The map of whitelee [4Mb] shows the variety of the paths around the windfarm, if you want to choose your own route around the site. Every turbine is numbered both onsite and on the map, making navigation easier and it is recommended to always take a copy of the map with you if exploring Whitelee off the main routes.
There is no booking required for bringing groups to the MTB facilities but we would ask that you check the 'Access restrictions' page to make sure there are no closures for MTB events, maintenance work etc. Group leaders are also encouraged to contact the countryside rangers and let them know if you are planning to bring a group so that they can let you know of any restrictions or if another group will also be on the trails at the same time.
Whitelee MTB trails
The construction of purpose-built mountain bike (MTB), trails was started in late January 2014 and completed when the official launch took place on the 25th of June the same year.
The project, led by East Renfrewshire Council on behalf of the Whitelee Access Project, provides ~4km of bespoke mountain bike trails that have been designed by the expert trail designers who delivered the Beijing Olympic and Glasgow Commonwealth games courses. The dedicated MTB facilities include main trails, a skills loop and pump track and are located within Brown Hill, just 500m from Whitelee Visitor Centre, within a 12 hectare former borrow pit site that East Renfrewshire Council leased from the land owner Scottish Water.
The trails and facilities are provided free of charge to use at any time of the day, 365 days a a year, weather permitting of course, and all that's required to use them is a suitable off-road bike such as a mountain bike. For your safety it is recommend to wear a cycle helmet, cycling gloves and if just starting out on MTB riding, additional safety equipment as deemed appropriate. The facility has something to appeal to all ages and abilities of rider and will promote rider progression through their use.
A map of the MTB trails is given on the reverse of the Whitelee Multi-map [4Mb].
Picnic & Shelter Area
A large picnic / viewing area complete with wet weather shelters and picnic benches is included at the start / finish of the trails so that parents can easily watch their children riding the trails and groups of riders can meet to chat about their days riding. The benches and shelters are also ideal for use by outdoor education establishments, riding clubs, groups etc as a place to discuss and develop mountain bike riding before then heading onto the trails themselves.
Blue & Red Grade Trails
The main trails bring a new and exciting dimension to cycling at Whitelee after strong public demand for them was identified and they add to the existing network of windfarm tracks that are already popular with cyclists.
The facility includes a ~4km long network of intermediate blue graded trails arranged as inner and outer loops around a bowl feature left after quarrying of the site. These are interconnected by 2 roundabout features at each end allowing riders to flow from the inner and outer trails without ever having to leave the tracks.
Interspersed along the main blue grade trails are red graded technical trail features (TTFs), that riders can either bypass or opt into and include recognised MTB features such as rock gardens, drop-offs, log ride and boardwalk etc. These are intended to provide more challenging riding features and conditions that will help riders progress and develop their bike skills.
A skills loop is located at the western end of the facility incorporating a number of technical trail features (TTFs), such as those found on the red grade sections of the main track but within a short, condensed trail aimed at promoting bike handling skills and rider technique.
The facility also includes a pump track at the eastern end of the site, intended to develop skills in 'pumping speed' from the track. This highly condensed track is composed of numerous rollers and berms that riders attempt to progress along without the need to pedal - instead generating the speed required to complete the course by pumping the bike on the features. Not only does this promote bike handling technique but is an excellent workout.
For a copy of the trail plan please see the Related documents section of this page.
Please be aware that track conditions vary through the site. Monitoring of the track quality and a maintenance program is continually carried out by Scottish Power Renewables but there will always be sections on some tracks that are better suited to certain activities. Some smaller paths are maintained by the countryside rangers. For further information on track conditions please contact the rangers.