Start location: A82, access to Upper Stoneymollan Farm (NS 381 816)
End location: Kirkton, Cardross (NS 342 806)
Geographical area: Strathclyde and Lanarkshire, Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park
Path Type: Coffin Road
Path distance: 6.75km
Accessibility info: Suitable for pedestrians
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Newsflash: 23rd April 2022 will see the welcome re-start of the Walks programme arranged by ScotWays for its members; first up is this route, the Stoneymollan Road. Other historic routes featured this year include the Old Road by Macduff's Cross, Glen Tilt, the Cauldstane Slap, the Herring Road and the Spout of Ballochleam. If you're not yet a ScotWays member, please consider joining up as membership helps support the Heritage Paths project, and the walks are a very fitting way to celebrate the history of these old routes!
Starts at footbridge over A82 - wooden signpost "Cardross 7.5km" - and follows the access road to Upper Stoneymollan Farm to a gate at NS373817 where there is another wooden signpost "FP to Cardross 6.5km". A pleasant green/stony path leads uphill to a plantation (Darleith Muir). The track continues through the plantation and on down through rough pasture to Blackthird Farm. (Parts of this section of the track are very muddy after wet weather due to cattle (including feeding stations) and farm vehicles. Bulls with cattle have been encountered on the track either side of Darleith Muir.) From here a metalled road is followed to Auchensail, Kirkton and thence on to Cardross
The Stoneymollan Road is used in part by the John Muir Way which as of 2014 runs from Helensburgh to Dunbar. Weaving its way through lowland Scotland, this 215km trail also takes in parts of the Gowk Stane Road, the Strathkelvin Railway Path, the Forth & Clyde Canal, the Antonine Wall and the Union Canal.
OS Landranger 63 (Firth of Clyde area)
This is an old coffin road that people would have used to carry their dead to be buried in the consecrated ground of the church at Cardross. At nearly 7km long it is quite a distance to carry a heavy load. Often coffin rests are found along these routes, which were flat or raised stones of flattened cairns for resting the coffin on. At these points the carriers could also take a rest, but there are no reports of any of these surviving on this route.
The first edition of the Ordnance Survey 6 inch to the mile mapping shows this route as being called the Cross Stone Road, and indeed there was supposedly a cross stone en route. Now all that remains is the base of the cross at NS362817 as the cross itself is thought to have gone missing around 1880. It is perhaps at this point that the coffin bearers would have taken a break.