Torr Alvie and the Duke of Gordon Monument

You may have seen the Duke of Gordon monument from the A9 or B9152, rising above Torr Alvie. It’s been on my wishlist for a while, and today was the day! This is a lovely wee walk, and we really enjoyed the views and the interesting memorials.

Distance: 3.5 miles / 5.5km

Parking: We parked in the front (quad bike) area of the carpark at the Dalraddy Holiday Park, and asked permission. We used the campsite shop here after our walk. There are ‘no parking’ signs in the layby at the entrance, and the B9152 is a fairly fast and busy road, so I wouldn’t have wanted to park further down.

Loch Alvie viewed from the Duke of Gordon Monument

Amenities: There is a shop with ice-creams, drinks and snacks at Dalraddy Holiday Park, and the Alvie Forest Food van is also here. It was closed on the day we visited, but do check their opening hours – the food looks amazing! I was glad to make use of the shop as a wee thank you for parking here.

Buggy/bike-friendly? We took an off-road pushchair with us on this walk and a balance bike. I wouldn’t particularly recommend the route for pushchairs as it was pretty hard work getting it up the steeper/rougher sections, but if you are up for the challenge, it didn’t feel unsafe. Our balance biker walked uphill, and greatly enjoyed the down, except for a tumble on a steeper section.

The Duke of Gordon monument comes into view.

Torr Alvie: the route

1. From the Dalraddy Holiday Park, with your back to the road, go left through the quad-bike zone and immediately under the railway line. Turn left here to join the Speyside Way.

2. Quite soon after this, the path reaches a tarmac lane. Turn right along this lane. After a little while, take the lesser track forking left and uphill.

3. The path goes through a little woodland, and then into a field. Cross the field, sticking to the left hand boundary, and go out through another gate. Looking over your shoulder, you will start to see some lovely views of the Spey Valley.

4. The path divides again. Turn left to climb up on to the ridge of the hill.

5. When the gradient levels out and the trees get thicker, look out for a wee path through the undergrowth to the right. The photograph is to show you what to look for! This leads to the Waterloo Cairn, a memorial to soldiers who fell at Waterloo. It was erected in August 1815, only two months after the battle, which I thought was quite impressive given the terrain.

6. Continue along the main path, which dips slightly before climbing again towards the memorial. There are some beautiful views up here.

7. Finally you come to the end of the ridge and the monument itself, with more glorious views over Loch Alvie and the Spey Valley. A great spot for a picnic!

8. When you are ready, retrace your steps back down to the holiday park.

Torr Alvie: the terrain

Most of the route was on good quality, broad paths. I have highlighted some more difficult areas in the photographs below.

Things to look for

Look out for blueberries in season, lichen, beautiful Scots Pines, and lots of juniper. On the ridge you will see the Waterloo Cairn and the Duke of Gordon monument.

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