Degree of Difficulty: Easy
Parking/Access: Park at nearby Kelpies Car Park and walk to the Kelpies to start the route.
Length of activity: 1 ½ miles
Duration of activity: 30-45mins (not including time for activities)
Map: Download the map here
Start the walk at the Kelpies, the park and paths are popular so cyclists please look out for pedestrians and walkers listen out for a bell warning you someone is cycling up behind you.
Cross the bridge by the motorway and head round the back of the Horsebox Catering where you’ll see these (see photo 1) brightly colour canal boat storage huts.
Head behind the huts and follow the fingerpost waymarkers which direct you to Love and Kisses. You will have the canal on your LHS and the river on your RHS. Cross over a small bridge.
Continue on the path with the water treatment works on your LHS. The path is flat and wide enough for pushchairs.
There are lovely views of the river to your RHS and you may see ducks, swans and even coots. Coots are smaller than a duck, have very dark feathers and have a white flash down their foreheads (see photo 2). You may enjoy playing Bird Bingo, another Fit For Life activity while you enjoy this walk.
Continue to follow the path over several more small bridges until you come to a cross roads. On a bright day why not try the Human sunclock? (see photo 3) Stand on the slab in the location indicated by whatever month it is when you take the walk. Your shadow will fall on one of the metal plaques coming out of the ground, estimating the time. To continue your walk carry on with the sun clock on your RHS following there is a fingerpost directing you to the Love and kisses sculpture.
After a short walk through the trees you will come across Love and kisses. It’s massive so don’t worry that you’ll miss it. ( see photo 4) There is a small metal plaque on the LHS of the path telling you about the sculpture and Love and Kisses is on the RHS of the path.
The sculpture is also sometimes called the Abbotshaugh Sentinel and was created by artist Jephson Robb. The inspiration was the shape of a laurel leaf which references the rich Roman heritage of the Falkirk Area. From certain angles it also looks like a heart and a pair of lips. It is made out of Corten Steel
Once you’ve taken an arty selfie or two you can either head back to the Kelpies, or enjoy some of the other well signposted routes in the community woodland.
The woodland provides a year-round home for many species including Roe deer, foxes, buzzards and kestrels. How many can you spot?
At the sunclock you could have turned right and this would have taken you to the new, impressive green painted bridge across the River Carron which connects the Bainsford, Langlees, Carron and Carronshore communities. (see photo 5) It spans 48m - the same length as seven double decker buses - and is held together by 1500 bolts.
It’s suitable for both cyclists and walkers so why not check it out.
For more local walks in the woods check out this brilliant booklet by Falkirk Council Ranger Service.