Black Craigs

Black Craigs Stats

Grade: Black - Severe
Distance: 14Km - 31Km including The Twister (red-graded)
Singletrack: 75%
Estimated Time To Ride The Route: 2.5 - 4 hrs

Black Craigs combines fast flowing singletrack and rocky technical features to test your skills. A highlight is McMoab with its huge slabs and ridges of exposed granite linked by boulder causeways


To reach the start of Black Craigs, follow the red-graded Twister trail to its half-way point.

Stairway to Heaven

After leaving the red route a section of easy forest road leads to the first black-graded singletrack. This particular Stairway to Heaven climbs steeply up by way of a series of switchbacks and rocky steps, but the challenge focuses the mind on the trail and as the name suggests it’s worth the effort – eventually!

The Judgment

A few metres on, the forest road feeds straight into The Judgement. A couple of rocky step-ups set the scene for a fast rocky plunge to the crux slab climb that requires both poise and power to clear. The hard bit is now over so it’s time to enjoy the flowing decent through Oak and Scots Pine woodland back to the valley floor.

The Troglodyte

Another short spin on the forest road leads to this easy section of singletrack through an area of ancient mining activity, climbing though open conifer woodland and back on to the forest road and the first crossing of the turbulent Palnure Burn.


A picturesque and remote forest road brings you to the centrepiece of the Kirroughtree trails: McMoab. This giant monolith of granite is reached by traversing rocky ridges and slabs linked by boulder causeways. Painted arrows show the way but a confident approach and considerable skill are required to link it all together without a dab. It is possible to bypass McMoab by continuing up the forest road if you don't feel up to it on this visit.


Whet your appetite - watch our video of McMoab (.wmv 4.1Mb).

Heartbreak Hill

Re-cross the Palnure Burn then cross over the A712 and start into this tough climb, the steepest and longest of the lot on a shared path. The climb can be leg-breaking as well as heartbreaking.

Black Craig

After topping out there's just time to recover on the forest road before the final spiralling climb to Black Craig summit. Stop and catch the view (and your breath), then enjoy payback time with an entertaining and varied descent leading seamlessly into Talnotry Hill.

Talnotry Hill

For many this section is the highlight at Kirroughtree: a great singletrack trail that drops a considerable height in its 2.5km with stunning views on the way down. However we recommend caution: the trail is fast and flowing but there are some serious drop offs that could catch you unawares if you are riding there for the first time. It’s best to approach this trail with caution initially then return once you know where the tricky bits are.


At the Talnotry Hill exit cross back over the A712 and join a short singletrack link running between posts 65 and 66. It packs in several natural rock features and a raised timber section before reaching the top of the Dallash access at post 66.

Hansel and Gretel

Relax for a short while, and then as the road starts to climb again cut on to more singletrack at Hansel and Gretel. It ducks and dives around the hill before spitting you across the forest road and straight into Hissing Sid.

Hissing Sid

Time to concentrate again as several rocky sections come as a warm up for Hissing Sid himself. The direct line down the rock face is most straightforward, while the spiralling line going to the right is harder to ride but easier to walk. Either way drops you on to more fast descending singletrack. There's a final short rocky climb to challenge you before swooping further down the hill to within sight of the start of the Jabberwocky.


This final black grade section of singletrack has teeth too. A series of steps leads to a rocky traverse via a tricky step down to a final big rolling drop, before joining back into the Twister trail for the return to the visitor centre.

The Trails view grading charts

Visitor Comments

Mark Proudlock
My second time round Kirroughtree but first on the black, didn't know what I had been missing. Awesome adrenalin packed fun not for the faint hearted. Was out in horrendous weather but the cold wind and rain of January didn't spoil my day and the trails were still first class. I ride Ae and Mabie every week, the challenges here are second to none. Even the climbs at Kirroughtree are enjoyable (if that's possible) will be back far more often.
Andy Dalgleish
Kirroughtree eh!
What a great ride. Just done the full red/black for the first time. Excellent with testing features all the way around and hardly any let up.
McMoad is nuts.
I rode the trail in good dry conditions but would advise caution if you are going out on the black solo for the first time and its wet.
Cant wait to come back.
Kirk holroyd
Red/black routes are fab, some really testing routes that keep you on your toes but advise caution the first time round lots that make you grin but also could hurt if not careful. Heartbreak hill is just that it's a killer on the legs but black Craig and tallnotry hill were a joy after the gruesome climb. Looking forward to my next visit.
Smile inducing, toe curling, adrenalin fuelled perfection.
Outstanding trail very diverse and you finish with a great buzz . The facilities were very good and the people in the shop very helpfull
Richard Austin Caven
Thank you Kirroughtree ...what a gem! Fantastic single track with loads to keep you interested, particularly the rock gardens...certainly adds an edge! McMoab really makes it: so unique, a great challenge....just unbelievable. had a great ride, I think everyone whose chose Glentress that weekend missed out! Special thanks to Phil at the Breakpad for the warm welcome and his enthusiastic, unpretentious and friendly advice. Top notch, will be back! Rick
Oh...and if you leave it late like us...this is a great light...
Amazing stuff...all the 7stanes have got something to offer but the black route here is up there with the best! Special mention to the guys at the Brake Pad for their warm welcome.
Armold fre norn irn
Done red and black - what a blast! Vast majority is do-able. The climbs are worth the crackin downs. Best part black Craigs into talnotry hill but the hole run is pure class. Will def be back - worth the ferry trip anytime!
Rhett Etherington
Without doubt the best man made trail in the uk
4 of us headed over in September. We are all in our 30s and have been mountain biking for a couple of years. This was the perfect course (red and black). This was my first time on a full suspension bike, which I hired on site. The terrain is fantastic and having the confidence of the full sus allowed me to be much more adventurous. I tried many things that I would ordinarily parp my pants at if I was to try on my hardtail. Very glad I went, and will definitely be back again.
I was only mountian biking a year and I done this when I was 15, unbelieveable fun.
Geebs fae Markinch
If you can do this trail, and you're fit enough, it's a no brainer that you must add on the black route. It completes a fantastic ride.
Geebs fae Markinch
Quite simply the best singletrack you will ride in this country. I'm a red grade rider so some bits were too tough, but 95% is do-able if you're fit enough (big up to anyone who gets round here without getting off for a push) An absolute must do!!!!!
Chris W
To give this trail centre anything less than the highest rating would be churlish:
Well maintained & thought out with appropriate grading. This is an excellent riding experience & well worth a visit; even the bike shop/hire is well above average for it's location.
Superb play area & pleasant cafe, which it looks like they're about to upgrade.
All in all a superb day out with lots to offer all abilities & the family.
First time at Kirroughtree and I did the red/black route. Got to disagree that the red is 'dull'. Perhaps not as fast as the likes of Glentress but far more technical and interesting. The black route was a real challenge - tiring and difficult but really great. Beautiful scenery and nice and quiet too - can't wait to do it again.
James E
Best trail centre in the UK bar none. Black Craigs has to be ridden by every mountain biker.
The Vonster
The red trail is proper dull - more like a blue with teensy bits of red/black :(
Voted best trail centre in the UK-I have to agree. A superb day out.
On my last visit to Kirroughtree I just rode the red and came away slightly underwhelmed as the Black is excellent and ridden as an addition to the red just makes it feel complete and so much more enjoyable for me.
Great trail and pretty demanding Black, will be back. Beautiful scenery and you will either love or hate McMoab.
Enjoyed the red better-mcmoab is all about strength and fitness. By the time you get there you are wacked.
Much better than the red with good fast flowing track. McMoab was scary biscuits!!
As much fun as ever, loads of grip, even in the wet. Feel like a pin cushion after all those midge bites though
Great trail, be fit! I was knackered by the time I got to black craig, thankfully I had done alot of the good techy stuff by the time I had got there, I got fatigue in my arms and steering was poor, I had an off which holed my elbow taking some souvenere stones home with me, 16 miles with out a bad hit, can't complain it was a great day :)
Trails for all and a kids play area - loved the blue - best one of the Stanes!
Paul & Adam
Rode the Black and Red trails yesterday - awesome fun especially under blue skies with a dusting of snow around! No body else there; I'd say a perfect excuse for a snow day off work :-)
Well worth a visit you need to be fit and brave to get the best out of it ! ace

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Kirroughtree Visitor Centre - Opening Hours



1st November 2015 - 31st March 2016 11am-2.30pm


Half term October 10-4pm


Contact : 01671 402165







Ample parking is at the trail head by the visitor centre. Parking costs £1 per hour, £2 for up to 3 hours and £3 for all day.

 More than 7 people would be classed as a minibus, which costs £12 for a day.


There are toilet and shower facilities on site at the visitor centre. The toilets are open all year.

Bike Hire

The Breakpad Bike and Outdoor Shop

Open daily -
10am - 4pm

They offer a wide range of demo and hire bikes, bike sales, with a fully equipped workshop for service and repairs on site.  Bike wash facilities are available. 

Call 01671 401303  for more information


Kirkcowan Cycles is in Newton Stewart and offers bike sales, repairs, servicing, parts, accessories and cycle hire.

Opening Times

Mon - Sat 8.30am - 5.30pm (Year Round)
Wed late night opening 8.30am - 8.30pm

Tel 01671 401529


Kirroughtree Mountain Bike Trail Centre,, 14,

Trail Conditions

Current at Thursday 4th February 2016

Trails: All open.

Kirroughtree Hillbilly Duathlon
Kirroughtree Hillbilly Duathlon
Kirroughtree Hillbilly Duathlon

Conditions: Please take extra care when high winds are forecast as this could lead to windblown trees across the trail.

Diversions: None.






Today's Weather

40°F / 4°C

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