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Whitelee windfarm

Whitelee latest news

All the latest news, wildlife sightings and event reports from Whitelee Windfarm and the surrounding area.

Woman on a wheeled sled pulled by two huskies


WCRS Event Guide

Our 2017 events programme is almost over with 1 event left to go. We hope everyone has enjoyed the mix of activities and events and please keep a look-out for our 2018 programme coming out early in the new year.

Event table Free Whitelee Ranger Service Events

Crafty Carving

  • Sunday 11th March
  • 10am - 4pm
  • Whitelee visitor centre
  • Booking essential


Try some spoon, and other, carving with our resident spoon carvers, or make some cord from natural fibres. Got carving or bushcraft questions - then bring them with you and we'll do our best to help. Limited spaces so book fast as last years event was popular.

Please note there is an age limit of 15 years or older and all children must be accompanied by an adult.

Check out our Facebook and Twitter feeds for photos, event updates and more.

Lochgoin Mini Array (Turbines 1 - 5 & 7)


Visitors to this area are requested to keep in mind that the entrance to the array where parking generally takes place, and the lay-by's in this area, are not within the windfarm and are private land. Vehicle access to this area is not included in normal access rights and the ability to park here is by landowner permission only.

Recent incidents of inconsiderate parking blocking access to the array and impinging on the use of the road to Lochgoin Farm could result in the loss of vehicle access to this area. Visitors are reminded that vehicle access is not included in rights afforded by the Scottish Outdoor Access Code. If visiting this area and bringing a vehicle - please park sensibly and considerately and do not block access to gates, the array or anywhere else. If on arriving, the area is busy with cars - please consider going somewhere else or parking at the Whitelee visitor centre and walking over. Do not move or ignore access restrictions that can be in the form of road cones, fencing and signage.

Failure to park sensibly and considerately could result in the loss of vehicle access in this area. 

2018 Events Guide Out Now


Our 2018 events guide is out now and full of our usual mix of fun family events, guided walks, nature activities and crafts - and all free to take part in. You can download the guide and printed copies will be available from the Whitelee Visitor Centre and local libraries in East Renfrewshire, South Lanarkshire and East Ayrshire soon.

pdf icon Whitelee country ranger events guide 2018 [468kb]

Fireworks Free Nights


The number of people setting off or attempting to set off fireworks at the windfarm has declined dramatically which is great news but better than that, promoting the nights of the 3rd - 5th November at Whitelee as a place to bring pets who hate fireworks has been hugely popular! 2017 was the first year the rangers were on patrol over the Guy Fawkes nights to stop fireworks at the windfarm and during those nights they noticed a number of dog owners bringing their pets to escape the constant thunder of fireworks within towns and cities - so this year they promoted the site with this idea in mind.

The Friday and Saturday nights were reasonably busy - but Sunday the 5th seen the car parks of the visitor centre absolutely packed with cars bringing pets to the windfarm. There were cars with cats on laps managing to relax, as were their owners over soup or a sandwich brought from home, but outside there were dog owners walking their stressed pets around the visitor centre as well as those armed with torches making use of the windfarm tracks. There was also a real community spirit in the night air as dog owners chatted with the rangers and one another, sadly trading stories of how many sedatives they'd had to feed their dogs, but also saying how happy they and their pets were to get away from the worst of the fireworks by coming to the windfarm...and what a great idea it was to promote the area for this purpose.

There were loads of much happier dogs enjoying a walk and on Guy Fawkes night and the rangers estimate there were between 150 - 200 people with their dogs throughout the night which is fantastic. There was also a dramatic decline in people coming to set off fireworks from previous years and those that did try were quickly approached by the rangers and once it was explained to them about the dogs as well as the fact fireworks are not permitted in the windfarm, they were happy to stop.

All in all the fireworks free nights were a roaring success and the rangers will look to build on this in 2018 by running the nights again and looking to develop them further, maybe with some activities to do. 

Cycle hire extension


Due to popular demand the cycle hire trial has been extended until further notice which is great news! Weather dependent Cyclestation will continue to come to the windfarm at weekends to offer electric and conventional MTBs as well as kids bikes. To find out more, pre book and keep up to date on when they will be at Whitelee, call Cycle Station on 07543 782 541, or visit their Facebook page or email them at

Access Restrictions - Ardochrig/Cleughearn Plantation


There will be localised access restrictions in place for vegetation clearance work at Ardochrig/Cleughearn plantation starting on Tuesday 24th October and lasting 4 days. An alternate route is in place. Please see the 'Access restrictions' page for more information.

Fireworks Not Permitted At Whitelee


Guy Fawkes/Fireworks night can be a great time to get the family out in the evening, around the bonfire and enjoying the fireworks display. Fireworks should not however be brought and set off at Whitelee and we would encourage anyone wishing to enjoy fireworks night to go to an organised event. These are safer - and the fireworks display is generally much better.

Fireworks are not permitted at the windfarm for a number of reasons, the main one being that fireworks have the potential to set alight the 'peatbog' that the windfarm is built on, causing damage not only to the bog and it's wildlife but also potentially the infrastructure built upon it for the windfarm. Peatbog fires can smolder underground, up to 15 meters below ground level, and have been known to burn underground for weeks, months, years and even decades - flaring up when conditions are right and setting the surface alight.

In addition to this the windfarm contains livestock and wildlife that can become distressed by fireworks, with potential to then injure themselves.

For the above reasons the windfarm has a zero tolerance approach to fireworks and members of the public are requested not to bring them to the windfarm. The countryside rangers will be patrolling the site from the 3rd to the 5th of November and anyone found attempting to set off fireworks will be required to leave the site as it is illegal to set off fireworks in a public place or on private land (not owned by the person).

Bike Hire At Whitelee


Bike hire has arrived at Whitelee - every weekend until the end of October 'Cyclestation' will be offering electric mountain bikes, conventional mountain bikes and kids balance bikes, along with safety equipment included in the hire price. The very reasonable hire costs will mean families can hire bikes for a fun day out without breaking the bank, or the car trying to get bikes to the site! Prices start from £10 for an electric mountainbike and £7 for a conventional mountainbike.

Cyclestation will be based just inside the main entrance gate to the operational windfarm each weekend until the end of the month.

Sheep Worrying And Keeping Yourself And Your Dog Safe


A few weeks ago there was an unfortunate sheep worrying incident at Lochgoin Farm that resulted in the death of a lamb. Luckily for the dog involved the owner paid the compensation for the loss of the lamb and the dog was able to leave site but it highlights a serious issue - farmers who find dogs worrying or harming their sheep are legally entitled to shoot the dog and recover any losses from the owner! This would be disastrous not only for the farmer but obviously the dog and its owners and in the case concerned, the owner did not expect their dog to act the way it did.

If you walk your dog at Whitelee or any area where livestock are present - do you know your dogs temperament? If not then do not risk their lives and livestock and keep them on the lead when near livestock and always keep your dog in sight.

Run The Blades 2017


Almost a year in the planning and all over in 2 short days, Run The Blades 2017 was the largest event to take place at Whitelee windfarm and cemented the event in the running calendar with this its third year.

599 runners took to the tracks around the windfarm, pounding the ground with 305 10K runners on Friday 21st and 294 21K and 50K runners on Saturday 22nd. Fridays weather was 'almost' ideal for running with mild temperatures but a freshening wind - as you'd expect on a windfarm. Chris Walsh won the 10k event in a time of 37 minutes 49 seconds but even more impressive is that Chris has now won all 3 race distances, taking first place in the inaugural 50K in 2015 followed by the 21K in 2016 and the 10K this time. The fastest lady was Janine Dickie coming in shortly after in 45 minutes 57 seconds.

Saturday saw lower winds than the previous evening and pleasant temperatures again but this was punctuated with showers and low cloud, adding to the atmosphere. The weather didn't slow the pace however and Kieran Cooper came in with a time of 1 hour 21 minutes 38 seconds for the half marathon followed by Susan MacRitchie as the first lady in 1 hour 32 minutes 16 seconds.

The final runners of the day were the endurance 50K group of 75, with Owain Williams crossing the line in a time of 4 hours 7 minutes 18 seconds. The fastest lady was Emma Roberts in 4 hours 35 minutes and 17 seconds.

Exhilarated runners seemed to love the routes and unique setting amongst the turbines and are already talking about the 2018 event!

For all the results see:

50K - 75 runners

Winner: Owain Williams in 4:07:18

Fastest woman: Emma Roberts in 4:35:17

Half Marathon - 219 runners

Winner: Kieran Cooper 1:21:38

Fastest woman: Susan MacRitchie 1:32:16

10K - 305 runners

Chris Walsh 0:37:49

Fastest woman: Janine Dickie 0:45:57

Turbine 109 Maintenance


Work using heavy lift cranes will be taking place at turbine 109 near Corse Hill this week. The work is expected to take place from Thursday 24th till Sunday 27th August but is weather dependent and may take longer. Local exclusions for health and safety will be in place - please do not enter the restricted area. A diversion is in place.

Quarry Blast


Please note there will be quarry blasting taking place in the windfarm today, Wednesday 16th August, at one of the quarries close to High Alderstocks and that will result in local access restrictions between 8am and 4pm.

The quarry is at: NS607452.

Blasting is scheduled for ~12noon.

B764 Moor Road Closure 31-7-17 to 4-8-17


Please be advised that from Monday 31st July until Friday 4th August there will be a road closure in place on the B764 outside the Windfarm (operational) entrance.

This is to re-surface the portion of road just within the East Ayrshire boundary (towards Kilmarnock), going towards the M77 on-ramp. We have been advised that there will be no through road for local traffic and no traffic control in place... and that no vehicles will be allowed to pass through! ...

The diversion route that will be in place will take you further up the A77 or M77, then along the A726 to the roundabout for Eaglesham, and then the reverse for the end of day route. Anyone coming from Glasgow should leave at the Eaglesham Junction (junction 5) and not junction 6.'

Lochgoin Covenanters Museum


We are pleased to say that the Lochgoin Covenanters Museum is open once again. There has been no official grand opening after the protracted refurbishment period but the good news is it's open, upgraded and still free to visit. The door is generally open during the day but if not then just knock at the farm to be let in. This great little museum is packed full of local history about the Covenanters and is well worth a visit.

Whitelee II Access Restrictions: 6th - 11th June


There will be localised restrictions at two turbine locations in the Whitelee II extension. Please see the details below and look for advisory signage if in the area. The restrictions will only affect the localised area to the turbine and the wider extension area can still be used.

Turbine 141 - the road will be closed at the junction towards T141 and immediately after, but before Turbine 142 from Tuesday 6th- Thursday 8th June.

Turbine 148 - the road will be closed at the junction towards T148 at the spine road and immediately after T148 from Friday 9th - Sunday 11th June.

Summer Is Here!


Summer has well and truly arrived at Whitelee with the return of the sites summer visitors - in the past few weeks Curlews (Numenius arquata), House Martins (Delichon urbica) and Swallows (Hirundo rustica) have all returned from their wintering grounds and bumblebees, hoverflies and butterflies have hatched in numbers. Meadow Pipits (Anthus pratensis) and Skylarks (Alauda arvensis) are filling the air with their sweet songs - a real herald of summer!

The rangers have installed a wildlife noticeboard at their cabin where you will find information on the weeks best wildlife sightings and where to see them so if you're interested in wildlife, remember to have a look at the board before heading out into site.

Hearing Dogs For Deaf People Event


Sunday 7th saw Hearing Dogs for Deaf People run a fabulous charity event from turbine 53 with over 100 participants, and their dogs of course. The sun was shinning and 2 guided walks took place to raise funds for the charity with dogs and owners happily exploring the windfarm during a fun filled day. There was every breed of dog imaginable present and all getting along nicely as well as demonstrations by a hearing dog and hilarity provided via the WCRS dog agility course. All the dogs and visitors left site having raised funds for a worthwhile charity while enjoying the walk in the glorious weather - we hope to see lots of them returning to enjoy the access opportunities the site provides for dog walkers.

Amphibian Amore


What a great night of spying on Whitelee's amphibians! On Sunday evening a group of 11, plus 3 rangers headed out into the evening gloom to check on some of the myriad of ponds in the windfarm for amphibians. It wasn't long before the rangers netted a handsome male Palmate newt (Triturus helveticus) and Common Frog (Rana temporaria). The Palmate Newt was in his full glorious breeding condition - brightly coloured and covered in dark spots, along with it's diagnostic tail filament. The frog was a small individual, possibly returning to the breeding pond for the first time, or having overwintered there. After walking onto the next pond the group were amazed at the number of frog tadpoles and spawn clumps found with literally thousands of very young tadpoles wriggling into life. Shortly after another male Palmate Newt popped up to the surface of the pond repeatedly showing off before descending again - providing a real treat for the group.

On the way back to the visitor centre the group stopped at the first ponds again to hunt some large Great Diving Beetles (Dytiscus marginalis) that the rangers had spotted on a recce a few nights previously and it wasn't long before one showed itself. This voracious predator wasn't the monster seen before but was still around 1 inch in length so no lightweight! All in all a great night was had by all.

Turbine 71 Work Ongoing


Work on replacing the main bearing at turbine 71 is now complete and the access restrictions in the area have been lifted. See the 'Access restrictions' page for more information.

Access Restrictions 24th - 26th March


Please note there will be various access restrictions in place this weekend - please look at the 'Access Restrictions' page for more information.

Spring Has Sprung At Whitelee


Spring has arrived early at Whitelee with signs aplenty - frogs and frog spawn have been seen at ponds, Curlews (Numenius arquata) have returned to breed, Skylarks (Alauda arvensis) and Meadow Pipets (Anthus pratensis) are singing high in the sky and the first wildflowers are coming into bloom.

Colt's-foot (Tussilago farfara), an early spring flowerer is a common sight along tracksides at Whitelee and is easily spotted being one of the first herbs to come out at the windfarm. Spotted by its attractive dandelion type yellow flower head this plant in unusual in that the flowers appear long before the leaves, earning it the early name of 'sons before fathers'.

The plant has a number of uses, not just brightening up tracksides at the windfarm and providing nectar for invertebrates such as hoverflies - fresh flowers can be eaten raw as part of a tasty and aromatic salad (washed first of course!) or dried and added to pancakes or fritters, and for bushcraft enthusiasts, before the introduction of matches, the felt-like covering of the plant was wrapped in a rag and dipped in a solution of saltpetre to create what was considered to be excellent tinder for firelighting. The leaves have even been added to stews and salads but it must be said, they're rather bitter! The plants leaves have also been dried in the past and used as a substitute for tobacco and it even has medicinal properties as it contains chemicals that are anti-inflammatory and antitussive (used for cough prevention and treatment). As if that wasn't enough, the whole plant - leaves and flowers, fresh or dried, can be used to make a tasty herbal tea as well.

Watch out for this lovely little plant appearing all along tracksides in the coming months with its bright yellow flowers - shortly followed by its distinctive hoof shaped leaves, from where it gets its common name.

New Path Creation


The rangers have been working with the Whitelee Access Project Officer (Nick Prower) to prepare for the creation of a new multi-use path leading from the Whitelee II extension area, past Laigh Hapton farm and onto the East Ayrshire paths. Work so far has focused on felling forestry trees before the bird breeding season, using the timber and brash generated to create a mat on top of which the new path will be constructed. Check back here for updates on when the path will be finished. 

MTB Tree Planting


Work began on planting up areas of the Whitelee mountainbike trails with a mixture of native tree species last week, ably assisted by a John Muir Trust Award group from Parkhill Secondary School in Glasgow.

As part of plans to continue developing the mountainbike facility at Whitelee the countryside rangers started planting a mixture of Silver (Betuala pendula) and Downy Birch (Betula pubscens), Rowan (Sorbus aucuparia), Scots Pine (Pinus sylvestris) and Aspen (Populus tremula) last week. Approximately 1100 trees will be planted in total adding character to the trails and making them more challenging to ride, but also adding new habitat to the northern end of the site in the form of mixed native woodland.

The star of the show is the beautiful Aspen; a fast growing but short lived native broadleaf species of tree. The saplings used for the planting come from the genetic stock of Scottish Aspen and their inclusion contributes to the conservation of this lovely tree. The 'tremula' part of its scientific name indicates one of its interesting qualities - its leaves shake, quake, quiver and tremble in the wind thanks to having winged leaf stems that help them flutter, and provide a nice easily seen identification feature.

Aspen can reproduce via seed but this is uncommon in Scotland for unknown reasons so their main method of reproducing is vegetative, with new suckers, or 'ramets' growing off the roots of mature tree. The numbers of new shoots produced in this way can be prolific, especially after major disturbance such as fire, with ~70,000 clones of the parent tree appearing per hectare.

Look out for these growing up in the site in the coming years.

Whitelee Extension Restrictions


The access restrictions within the Whitelee II extension have now been lifted.


Please note the Whitelee extension is currently closed for public access due to on-going site works. Members of the public are requested not to enter the area for health and safety reasons until work is completed. Advisory notices are in place at entry points to the extension area and visitors are requested to follow the access advice.

Work is anticipated to be completed by the end of the week. Please check back here for updates.

Scottish Endurance Riding Club Event


The Scottish Endurance Riding club (Glasgow Branch) were back at Whitelee windfarm for another endurance ride on Sunday 19th February and was another successful day! All horses and riders got round the course without a hitch and got back safe and sound, albeit a little wet and cold. There were four routes organised; a 10km taster, 17km, 21km and a 25km courses. There is a grading system that is used in competitions where the horse and rider must work together to maintain a certain pace, and in doing so they can train and work on different qualifications which will allow the rider to be a part of more difficult and testing events.

The event began at Ardochrig, the most Eastern point in the windfarm, and the location of the grid connection where the electricity from the windfarm feeds onto the national grid. From here the horses rode a taster route to get the rider and horse comfortable with the conditions and to get the correct pace for the race. After this they made their way out past Corse Hill, down into one of the forestry areas and then back up towards Ardochrig. The other route went further into site and around Drumduff hill. The weather on the day was cloudy, suitably windy (for a windfarm) and with some powdery rain... the wet stuff. The event team had a large amount of coffee and hot chocolate to stave off the worst of it, and no one caught pneumonia!

There were double the number of entries since the last event in October with a total of 35 riders and 10 helpers along with 27 vehicles to transport the horses. Ranging from small horse boxes to enormous "lorries", fully equipped with shower, kitchen, toilet and a place to sleep... and space for a horse. The Rangers had a fantastic day watching the horses do what horses do and had a great laugh with the riders and helpers. WCRS are already looking forward to hosting the event again in April and are hoping that the weather this time will be a little brighter. We also want to thank the Riding club for using Whitelee as a place to host their events and hope that it is something that can continue as we continue to work at making Whitelee a popular place to horse ride.

2017 Event Guide


The 2017 WCRS events guide is on its way to the printers and will be available from the windfarm as well as local libraries very soon but in the meantime, if you cannot wait, you can download a copy from this page.

MTB Works - Access Restrictions


Over the next few weeks the mountain bike tracks will be receiving some much needed maintenance that will result in closures of parts of the facility.

The tracks are now 3 years old and have been consistently used throughout the year, which has resulted in some areas becoming eroded and weathered, exposing the stone and areas of geogrid.

Starting from the 13th of February a local contractor will be carrying out resurfacing work over ~80% of the inner track and a few sections of the outer. A new 'berm' will be built in the eastern most section, culverts will be placed in areas where water flows over the surface of the track during times of wet weather, and some additional berm maintenance in the western part of the outer track will also take place. Work will progress over the next few weeks and during this time most sections of the trails will remain open however some localised closures will be necessary so we ask that visitors keep an eye out for restrictions and closure notices showing where tracks may be closed. Work areas will change from week to week so visitors should check on here or our 'access restrictions' page for updates before travelling.

If you have any questions or for more information please to not hesitate to get in touch with the Whitelee Ranger Service.

Run The Blades 2017


Run The Blades returns in 2017 with another opportunity for participants to run in 10K, half marathon and 50K races through the windfarm. The 2016 event was hugely successful with 370 people taking to the windfarm tracks for a spectacular day of running - and thankfully the weather was much kinder! Advance tickets for the 2017 event, which takes place on the 21st and 22nd of July, are on sale now from Breaking Strain Events.

Dunwan Horse Trek Route


The rangers have created a new off-track horse trekking route that loops around the eastern end of Dunwan Hill. The route takes riders out on a ~6km circular route over farmland and moor while circling Dunwan Hill and providing some wonderful views to Dunwan reservoir. For more information and details of this and other routes for horse riders, as well as our free leaflet for horse riders, please see the horse riding page on here or contact the Whitelee Rangers.

2017 Events Programme


Our new 2017 events programme will be out soon and has a mixture of old family favourites as well as some new and exciting activities/events. The booklet will be available in libraries in East Renfrewshire, South Lanarkshire and East Ayrshire as well as via the website here and from the windfarm itself. Also returning will be our popular kids 'Boggy Beasties' summer club.

Book quickly as popular events fill up fast.

Stroller Striders Winter Program 2016 - 16


In a change for the 2016/17 winter months, the group will continue to meet at the Whitelee visitor centre and make use of the windfarm tracks through December. Access to the outside toilets is available at the visitor centre but due to the closure of the centre to the general public at this time, the cafe etc is closed. We will continue to meet at 10am at Whitelee through December up until the 20th December.

Please note there will be no strollers on the 27th December or 3rd January.

From January 10th the group will switch to meeting every Tuesday at 11am at alternate parks. At the winter locations, Rouken Glen Park and Calderglen Country Park, the walk lengths are approximately 4 miles but are on various surfaces. The walks take approximately 1.5 hours with parents pushing their babies all bundled up in their push chairs/strollers. Grandparents, friends and the family dog are welcome to come along as well. The walk is free and there is no need to book in advance - just come along and join the group, enjoy the walk and have a good chat with fellow parents along the way.

The group is informal and members can come and go depending on how busy they are each week.  The countryside rangers accompany the group all the way to provide help if required.

Please contact the countryside rangers for further information or if you have any questions.

Crimbo Crafternoon


We're feeling very festive after our Crimbo Crafternoon event. We had over 80 people through the door to have a go at willow weaving with our expert willow weaver Geoff Forrest. Willow stars were all the rage this year, decorated with holly and ivy, and a dash of gold, silver or snow spray for those final touches. Other crafts included willow Christmas trees and ornate paper snowflakes and 3D trees. A fun family event to kick off the festive season!

Ravens (Corvus corax)


If you're near the visitor centre end of the windfarm at this time of year - keep your eyes open for the Ravens. These impressive big birds are often overlooked as being crows - they are in the same family of course and are the largest of the Corvid or crow family. An old Scottish name for the raven is 'corbie', which is thought to have derived from the Latin 'corvus'. There are lots of old tales about ravens such as one Scottish legend that tells of an evil hag called Cailleach who appeared in the form of a number of birds, including the raven, and feasted on men's bodies! These highly intelligent and playful birds are great to watch however and thankfully the old wives tales haven't been held against them.

Ravens are easy to spot due to their size but they also have a distinctive, short gurgling croak call that they make while flying along. They are regularly seen flying over the visitor looking for tasty treats!



Wicker Man was the theme of this year's Spooktastic Halloween event. The Visitor Centre was filled with some creepy characters taking great delight in scaring visitors young and old. The hub was filled with the usual gruesome games and activities, and our spooky walks were very popular, with our own rendition of 'Ring a Ring o' Roses' in the dark. We love Halloween, and are looking forward to next year's event already!

Witchin' Warm Up


Once again our Witchin' Warm Up event was extremely popular, with around 200 people taking part in our wand and broom making workshops. All of our materials disappeared like magic! Some scary monsters were also created in the crafts corner, and a fun time had by all.

Mucky Hands Garden Action Day


A number of young families descended on the Ranger Cabin at Whitelee to help us spruce it up. We started with some good old-fashioned weeding, getting rid of the encroaching Coltsfoot and grasses next to the decking area, before raking and turning the soil in preparation for planting some lovely heathers and lavender. Amongst the heathers, some bee holes were created by recycling the plant pots that came with the heathers.

A trellis was also put up at the end of the cabin, with some ivy planted to start climbing. Many thanks to all the families who came to help, the area around the cabin is looking a lot tidier and we look forward to the colours produced by the heather throughout the year.

The Rangers finished the day by creating a wildflower area outside the Visitor Centre which will hopefully produce a fantastic colourful display next summer.

Action Medical Research Charity Walk


Action Medical Research are a charity which supports and provides funding for research that focuses on diseases and conditions that effect children. They were founded in 1952 during the time of the polio outbreak in the UK and helped develop the polio vaccine which lead to the eradication of the disease. Since then the charity have spent an incredible £115 million which has went on to support and fund research that is saving the lives of thousands of children in the UK.

On Sunday the 11th of September the charity took to Whitelee windfarm for a walk to raise money and awareness of the charity. The day was a great success with a turnout of 80 walkers and 17 dogs! The dogs came along with their owners and wore costumes in the hope of becoming the best dressed dog on the day; it was very colourful! They raised an incredible £1600 all of which will go to the charity and help fund and support vital research.

The day entailed a short walk from the visitor centre to the Blackwood Hill viewpoint and back again, roughly 4 miles in total. At the top of the hill a photographer and a bag of props waited for each group to make the day even more memorable. In short, the day was a success, the weather was great and everyone had a fantastic time at the windfarm. We hope to see them again with a future event at the windfarm!

Christian Aid Fundraising 'Power Walk'


On Saturday 10th September, Christian Aid Scotland held their first 'Power Walk' fundraising event at Whitelee as part of their 'Another Way' campaign. The walk took in the Lochgoin Circuit with a shortcut across the Lochgoin dam wall cutting out a mile and taking the distance down to 7 miles. A shorter 3-mile route to the Blackwood Hill Viewpoint was also available for those who didn't want to tackle the big one. The sun was shining as the 40 walkers headed out into the windfarm to stride along and to learn about how climate change is affecting people from all over the world. On completion of their route, everyone got a medal and a big pat on the back for their effort! We're already looking forward to seeing them return next year!

Blackwood Hill Viewpoint


The Blackwood Hill viewpoint path is fully open once again after some required repairs and maintenance.

B764 Moor Road Closure


The B764 Moor Road is fully open once again.

Crafty Campfire Cooking


With no den/bivvy building event this year the outdoor enthusiast at Whitelee might have thought they were being ignored by the rangers, but in a move intended to broaden the bushcraft offering, the rangers came up trumps again with a campfire cooking event on Sunday 28th August.

6 families made their way to the Carrot side of the windfarm where they had a great day in the sun gaining some handy campfire firelighting tips, and cooked up a feast of food. Participants were provided some handy recipes to try for the event, or could bring their campfire favourites. Parents and their children worked together to get their fires going, before cooking up everything from sausages to...campfire pizza, that went down a storm!

Run The Blades Festival Of Running


Saturday 23rd July 2016 saw the second incarnation of the 'Run the Blades' event at Whitelee windfarm. Following the successful inaugural event in 2015 the organisers expanded it for 2016 with the addition of 10k and 21k distance courses alongside the 'ultra' 50k race. The number of competitors was also expanded significantly, with 370 participants taking part across the 3 race distances. On this second running of the event weather conditions were far more favourable than in 2015, which had seen near-storm force winds and driving rain and as the runners set off from next to the Whitelee MTB trails, they made quite a sight disappearing off into the windfarm.

The 10K men's race was won by Matthew Leckie in 42 minutes and 17 seconds and the women's race by Julie Stevenson in 47 minutes and 40 seconds. The 21K distance was won by Cris Walsh in 1 hour 17 minutes and 53 seconds and the women's race by Olivia McBride in 1 hour 35 minutes and 18 seconds, while the 50K events were won by Lee Muir in an impressive 3 hours 29 minutes and 39 seconds and Shona Young in 4 hours 24 minutes and 35 seconds, both setting new course records from last year's event.

Congratulations to all the competitors that took part across all race distances and age categories. Feedback from event organisers and participants was extremely positive and plans are already in discussion for what's hoped will be another successful event in 2017, putting the event well and truly on the race calendar. Check out the Countryside Rangers Facebook page for photos from the event.

Dirt Crit 2016


Please note the Dirt Crit series race in the MTB facility has been cancelled.

Run The Blades Festival Of Running


The windfarm will once again play host to the 'Run The Blades' running event, this year expanded to include a 10K, half marathon and 50K race routes, coving most of the windfarm and with up to 500 runners. The event village and race start/finish line will be at turbine 53, next to the mountain bike tracks. The Whitelee visitor centre will be utilised for event registration in the morning but this will not affect general visitors to the centre.

Parking for the event will be off site or within the operational windfarm on the first array road with turbines 9 and 24 on it but public access will be maintained throughout.

At the start of each race it will be necessary to hold general access until all the runners are away. The runners will run from T53 in an anti-clockwise direction around the site but at the start they will use the single track path at the western end of the mountain bike tracks. Access will be restricted on the path at this time but will only be for a short duration before full access is restored.

There will be no access restrictions within site as a result of the races once the runners are away from the start and visitors should not be affected.

Canine Capers


This years canine capers didn't disappoint for fun and hilarity with dogs! It was a rather wet, windy and miserable day for everyone but there was the steady stream of people who'd came to try the dog agility course, try the games and socialise their dogs. As always the 'fetch the sausage' game didn't disappoint with only a couple of dogs making any attempt to bring the sausage to their human companions - the best were those that ran back and almost made it, before defiantly eating it just out of reach! The agility course proved popular as always with everything giving a few goes - with some of the dogs breezing round while others were comic stars of the day.

Our thanks to everyone who came out on what wasn't the best day. We look forward to 2017!

New Ranger


WCRS were happy to welcome a new seasonal ranger, Ryan Ward, into the team at the start of July. Ryan comes with a wealth of experience from working as a ranger at Rothiemurchus Estate in Aviemore and will be a great addition to the team - make sure and say 'hi' if you spot him out exploring the windfarm.

Temporary access restrictions on Whitelee MTB Trails - Monday 4th & Tuesday 5th July 2016


The access restrictions are now lifted and work is complete.



  • Southern sections of Inner and Outer Loops will be closed.
  • Main western entrance track will also be closed.
  • Alternative entrance to MTB tracks at eastern end of trails.
  • Please see map and obey localised access restrictions and warning barriers within the MTB site.
  • Skills loop and pump track should remain accessible.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Bug Out


The weather wasn't exactly bug friendly on Saturday but we still had around 60 parents and children along for our Bug Out event, to look at the insects/invertebrates of the windfarm as part of National Insect Week. As all good rangers are, we were prepared for this with a 'lab' set up in the hub inside the visitor centre with microscopes, identification guides and a selection from our dead insect collection for everyone to look at. On our first foray out to bug hunt the first group found numerous bugs hiding in the undergrowth including bumblebees, spiders, flies, caterpillars and an amazing parasitic wasp. After such a great haul of finds we headed in to identify them and look at them in more detail.

Sadly the weather got extremely wet not long after our first foray out but it didn't dampen the spirits of everyone who visited us in the hub. We looked at the catches from earlier in the day as well as getting up close to dragonflies, beetles, bees, spiders and true bugs using our collection of dead insects! All in all it was a fun day with both parents and kids alike saying how much they enjoyed looking and hearing about our amazing insects in more detail. 

The Day The Sun Stood Still


What can be said about this years summer solstice event other than...fantastic! By 9pm we had over 40 massed and ready to go and with mild weather and breaking cloud, everything was in place for a great evening. The event started with a short recital from 'Walk' by Henry David Thoreau, emphasising the importance of sauntering - as that's what we'd be doing on the way to the Blackwood Hill viewpoint. After this we set off for the Blackwood Hill, now with a few additional late arrivals.

On arriving at the viewpoint the group were provided with a hot tea or coffee by the rangers, as the group continued to swell with more late arrivals, taking us to over 50 for the evening - all out to enjoy not just the solstice but the 'strawberry moon' that was also forecast. During hot refreshments it looked as if the clouds wouldn't part for us to enjoy the best of the evening but thankfully, around10.15pm the clouds parted to reveal a bright, red tinged moon that the rangers quickly got their telescope onto - revealing a beautiful bright, pinky moon. After allowing everyone time to enjoy this the focus was moved to a small 'litha' fire that had been lit by the rangers.

The litha fire is said to be a sacred fire and during the solstice, it is said to be cleansing - anyone who wished to, could cross the fire, leaving their problems in the flames as they did so and emerging on the other side with new focus for the year ahead. Fantastically...everyone decided to have a go! After some further chat and moon gazing everyone started to head back to the visitor centre, but all said how enjoyable to evening had been and how grateful they were that the weather had cleared for us to provide such a great night.

T29 Access Restrictions Lifted


Please note the access restrictions at turbine 29 are now lifted.

Turbine 29 Temporary Access Restriction


There will be a temporary track closure to turbine 29 on the south side of Lochgoin reservoir on Sunday 29th May so that vital maintenance can be carried out on the turbine. Barriers will be erected in the vicinity of the junction near turbines 73/74 and at the opposite end of the track near turbines 14/30. For your health and safety you are advised not to go past the barriers. An alternate route is possible on the track to the north of turbine 29, running along the side of the reservoir, allowing the Lochgoin circuit route to remain open.

Restrictions are anticipated to be in place for 1 day but are weather dependent and may run for longer. Please follow any advisory signage in place during the work.

'Run The Blades' Returns To Whitelee


Endurance runners with a taste for wild, challenging terrain are being invited to participate in the second 'Run the Blades' event at Whitelee Windfarm near Glasgow on Saturday, 23rd July

'Run the Blades', which is organised by Breaking Strain Events, offers three race options - a 50k ultra-marathon, half marathon and 10k - within the unique setting of the UK's largest on-shore windfarm. The iconic site is otherwise used to power some 300,000 homes by way of 215 huge (130 - 140 metre) wind turbines!

Whitelee is located on Eaglesham Moor just 20 minutes from Glasgow, with the wild, windswept environment ideal for power generation. However, the site's 130kms of trails, spanning mixed moorland and forestry, also offer exhilarating conditions for outdoor activities, whether it's running, cycling, or horse-riding.

Despite heavy rain last year, competitors in the inaugural event were invigorated by the elements and enthralled by the scenery and wildlife, which is why so many have signed up again in 2016 and are spreading the word to a growing number of enthusiasts. On a clear day - which we're obviously hoping for in 2016 - you can see down into Glasgow and the Clyde Valley and, if you're really lucky, all the way to Northern Ireland looking west. We're runners ourselves and believe we've found a classic challenge that's going to run and run!

Lee Peyton, Director of Breaking Strain

'Run the Blades' is taking place by kind permission of Scottish Power Renewables, Forestry Commission Scotland and other local landowners with support from Whitelee Access Planning Group and sponsorship from Scot JCB. 

Whitelee Countryside Ranger Service, which is provided jointly by East Renfrewshire, East Ayrshire and South Lanarkshire councils, has worked closely with organisers to help deliver what will be another thrilling event. 

As well as being a great venue for events like 'Run The Blades' there are fantastic facilities at Whitelee including a network of waymarked trails, mountain bike trails and a visitor centre complete with café, offering a great day out for all the family.

To find out more, or to sign up for the 10k, half marathon or 50k at £20, £25 or £31, respectively, visit the the Breaking Strain website.

New Walk, Cycle, Trek Route Through Cleughearn Plantation


The Whitelee Access Project has created a new route through the Cleughearn Plantation, near the Ardochrig entrance to the windfarm. The path takes visitors on a circular journey through the plantation and is partly surfaced and partly off-track and is a great way to go deep into the woods where it's possible to spot birds such as the stunning Bullfinch (Pyrrhula pyrrhula).

Corse Hill Fence Removed


The high security fence that has persisted on top of Corse Hill for some years now after the removal of the radar installation that was previously there, has now been removed. This opens up the hill with fantastic views in all directions. Next up for the site - the Whitelee Access Project are looking to create a viewpoint installation similar to that found at Blackwood Hill.

B764 Moor Road Closure


Please be aware that the B764 is closed to vehicle traffic at the top of Polnoon/Montgomery Street in Eaglesham. Pedestrians and cyclists can still use the route. Work will be ongoing until the 29th May unless completed sooner. A diversion route is in place for the duration of the works but please note this will add time to your journey. Please see the diversion map in the 'related documents' section.

Great Grey Shrike Spotted at Crook Hill


News came through from the Scottish Ornithologists' Club local rarity alert bulletin last week that a Great Grey Shrike (Lanius excubitor), had been spotted at Crook Hill in the windfarm (NS5745). These very scarce and fascinating birds arrive from Scandinavia in the autumn to overwinter in the UK, sometimes staying until April/May before returning to their breeding grounds. Population estimates number the UK overwintering population at around 63 birds! They are a medium sized bird that at a distance can appear like a Magpie (Pica pica), and are often seen sitting on perches from where they hunt. They can also be seen chasing down and flushing prey items and have the curious habit of impaling prey such as small birds, mammals and insects onto thorn bushes to larder them.

Interestingly on visiting the windfarm for the very first time in 2010, the countryside rangers recorded a great grey at Flow Moss (NS563455), which is more or less the same spot indicating that this is likely the same bird holding territory in this area.

Ravens and Short-eared Owls


If visiting the visitor centre end of the windfarm or taking to the Lochgoin circuit route, keep your eyes and ears open for Ravens (Corvus corax), and Short-eared Owls (Assio flammeus), which have been seen regularly in these areas recently.

Short-eared Owls are medium sized day flying owls, making them stand out straight away, but also have a mottled brown body with pale underwings to help identify them. At this time of year the males make dramatic acrobatic flights to attract a mate, flying up high, hovering and then descending quickly with exaggerated wing beats and while singing and making occasional wing claps. They can also be seen 'quartering' or hunting, flying low over the ground, before accelerating down to strike at an unsuspecting prey item - and making quite a sight to see.

Ravens are huge black birds, larger even than Buzzards (Buteo buteo), with stout beaks and are in fact the largest of the corvid or crow family. They are highly intelligent and inquisitive birds and are known to mate for life. At this time of year they are regularly seen, and heard, passing overhead making a distinctive 'korrp' call as they do, helping to distinguish them from crows.

If you spot either of these two species, or any other wildlife, the countryside rangers would love to hear about them.

Whitelee Stroller Striders Back At The Windfarm


Our popular parent and baby walking group, which has been running since 2011 and seen over 300 participants take part, has returned to Whitelee after the winter tour.

The group meets every Tuesday morning at 10am at Whitelee visitor centre between March and December. The walk starts at ~10am, covers ~4 miles, and takes approximately 1.5 hours with parents pushing their babies all bundled up in their push chairs/strollers. Grandparents, friends and the family dog are welcome to come along as well. The walk is free and there is no need to book in advance - just come along and join the group, enjoy the walk and have a good chat with fellow parents along the way.

The group is informal and members can come and go depending on how busy they are each week.  The group meet at the main entrance gate into the operational windfarm (next to the large threshold information sign), before heading out. When the weather is poor the group may decide to take a shorter route and when conditions are good - enjoy stretching their legs over the full distance, taking in some spectacular views along the way. The countryside rangers accompany the group all the way to provide help if required.

New for 2016 - every 3 weeks there will be the option to add an extra couple of miles to the walk, to help progress fitness. Those wishing to do this will continue on with a ranger leading and those that aren't ready for this yet can return to the visitor centre with the second ranger.

At the end of the walk most members head to the visitor centre for a well earned hot drink, and to make use of the baby changing facilities.

During the winter months of December, January and February, due to the closure of the visitor centre, the group go on location at parks around the partner councils of the Whitelee Access Project. At the winter locations, Rouken Glen Park, Dean Castle Country Park and Calderglen Country Park, the walk lengths are approximately 4 miles but are on various surfaces.

Please contact the countryside rangers for further information or if you have any questions.

Whitelee Access Planning Group 2015 Meeting Minutes Available


If you would like to know about the workings of the Whitelee Access Planning Group, the 2015 meeting minutes are now available from here:

Whitelee Stroller Striders Winter Programme

This is our popular parent and baby walking group which meets every Tuesday morning at 10am at Whitelee visitor centre between March and December. During the winter months of December, January and February, due to the closure of the visitor centre, the group go on location at parks around the partner councils of the Whitelee Access Project.

The group is informal and members can come and go depending on how busy they are each week. At the winter locations, Rouken Glen Park, Dean Castle Country Park and Calderglen Country Park, the walk lengths are approximately 4 miles but are on various surfaces. Download of our winter programme, including locations, dates and times:

The walks start at 11am and take approximately 1.5 hours with parents pushing their babies all bundled up in their push chairs/strollers. Grandparents, friends and the family dog are welcome to come along as well. The walk is free and there is no need to book in advance - just come along and join the group, enjoy the walk and have a good chat with fellow parents along the way.

The group meet at the main car parks at each park before heading out. When the weather is poor the group may decide to take a shorter route and when conditions are good - enjoy stretching their legs over the full distance, taking in some spectacular views along the way. The countryside rangers are with the group all the way to provide help if required.

At the end of the walk in each location there is access to a hot drink as well as changing facilities.

Please contact the countryside rangers for further information or if you have any questions.

Visitor Centre To Re-open


The Whitelee visitor centre will re-open for business next week on the 3rd of February. The centre is only open Wednesday to Sunday through February and goes back to 7 day a week opening in March. As part of preparations for reopening the staff were given an extended tour of the windfarm by the countryside rangers, showing them the various entry points as well as a number of areas of interest, popular spots and routes etc so that they can provide the best information possible to visitors.

Road Closure on Ardochrig Road


Please note that there are currently road works on Ardochrig road, north of Skeoch Farm preventing vehicle access up this section of the road to the windfarm entrance at Ardochrig. It is possible to avoid the roadworks and use High Cleughearn road to get to the Ardochrig entrance however. This is the road that is west of Ardochrig road. The roadworks are planned to last approximately 2 weeks and diversion signs should be in place in due course.

2016 Events Programme

The 2016 events program will be available from libraries in the 3 council areas the windfarm covers as well as from the Whitelee visitor centre, ranger cabin and other outlets.

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