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The Formartine & Buchan Way, Aberdeenshire

The Formartine & Buchan Way, Aberdeenshire


Postby andrewl7642 » Tue Apr 15, 2014 12:42 am

Route description: Formartine & Buchan Way

Date walked: 12/04/2014

Time taken: 4 days

Distance: 85 km

Ascent: 122m

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Opened in the early 1990s, the Formartine and Buchan Way runs along the former route of the railway that extended from Dyce on the fringes of Aberdeen north to Maud, where it split with branches heading to both Fraserburgh and Peterhead.

The line was a victim of the 1960s Beeching cuts, though it continued to carry freight to Peterhead until 1970 and to Fraserburgh until 1979. The Buchan Countryside Group began the work of reopening the route as a cycleway and footpath in 1987. Today the route offers a peaceful walking route through pleasant, lowland countryside and rich farmland.



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Saturday 9th March 2014 - Dyce to Udny Station, Udny Station to Ellon - 13 miles
Alighting at Dyce, my friend and I head off on the old railway line towards Ellon.

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Dyce Station, very busy in the mornings as people commute from Aberdeen and the surrounding area.

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The route begins on a cycle path North of the station

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Horsey came over to say Hello

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Plenty of bridges left behind as evidence of the railway that once passed underneath

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and many old workers huts still erected along the route

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Another workers hut, many of these on route.

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Must have been real cosy

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Arriving at Udny Station

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Udny Station, now a house

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A quick cup of Coffee at Udny and we continue on our way to Ellon.

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Not long before we arrive on the outskirts of Ellon, where we descend from the old railway bridge into Ellon and catch the bus back to Aberdeen. The pub awaits.

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The old railway bridge crossing the river into Ellon.

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Ellon Centre


Saturday 15th March 2014 - Ellon to Auchnagatt, Auchnagatt to Maud, Maud to Strichen - 17 miles

All on my lonesome this time, I caught the bus from Aberdeen to Ellon bright and early to continue the walk.
It was a long but peaceful day in the country with the occasional walker or cyclist passing in the opposite direction.

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Leaving Ellon

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chooo chooooo I'm a train!

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another workers hut, this time a little run down

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and another...

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Nice to see they are kept clean!

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more evidence of a railway being in place, not sure what these numbers were for, I suppose the most obvious answer would be mileage?

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looks like another workers hut, now being used as a garden shed.

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Old Platform

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Cyclist - one of many that day

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yet another hut and bridge

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678?

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Arriving at Auchnagatt, heading for Maud

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Auchnagatt Station

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Spotted a cool wee Treehouse

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Lets play... Spot the hut!

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Windfarm in the distance, one of many eyesores

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I spot a Hut!!

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One for the collection

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it would appear a young team has already claimed this one

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stone hut, a rare specimen

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Finally arriving at Maud Station and the biggest and coolest of them all!

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Two platforms here, as the track splits, North towards Fraserburgh or East to Peterhead.

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Maud Station

Once arriving at Maud, I decided 12 miles would be enough and I was going to jump on the next bus home, the problem was... I had already missed the last bus from Maud :? So this was no time to be lazy, I was heading for Strichen whether I liked it or not! Luckily Maud has a village shop where I was able to re-fuel on Transform-a-snacks and Chocolate for my next 5.5 miles, arriving in Strichen around 7pm.

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Onwards to Strichen it is then...

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somebody has a staring problem

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we're still playing Spot the Hut!

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and collecting numbers

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Some graffiti under the bridge, although I don't condone this behaviour, it's pretty damn good :clap:

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...more behaviour I don't condone! One Hut burned to the ground probably by mindless idiots. It does have quite a surrealness to it though, could be a work of art.

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One random chimney... one random can of Oil!! Coincidence? I think not!

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Good to see this one is still intact

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as you can now see there are plenty of small bothies en route

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approaching Strichen

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last photo of the day


Saturday 5th April 2014 - Strichen to Maud, Maud to Longside, Longside to Peterhead - 18 miles

Gave the route a break for a while before returning in April to do the Peterhead stretch, once again on my todd.

The earliest bus from Aberdeen to Maud on a saturday is 10:45am, this was no good for me as I wouldn't arrive in Maud until noon, bit late to be starting a 13 miler. So I went with plan B and caught the bus back to Strichen bright and early, then walked 5.5 miles back to Maud to continue on to Peterhead via Old Deer, Mintlaw and Longside.

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first hut of the day

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abandoned cottage up the hill

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Came across 2 abandoned houses in the distance so couldn't resist going up the hill for a closer look and a quick explore.

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Honey... I'm home!

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Old Deer Abbey

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Aberdeen Angus for Tea

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getting there...

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Mintlaw Station, all bricked up. Would like to get inside for a look.

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departing Mintlaw station

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this way>>

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Longside Golf course

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6 miles to Peterheed

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The Sun finally decided to make an appearance

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Uh Oh looks like somebody left their cooker on!

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Getting closer to Peterhead and the dog walkers start to appear

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Cyclist

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Approaching Peterheed

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Peterhead

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Peterhead Harbour where Hector Brocklebank is waiting with my fash

The day passed pretty quick and never felt like I'd walked a whole 18 miles, then it was straight to the bus station and back to Aberdeen, nothing for me in Peterheed.


Saturday 12th April 2014 - Strichen to Fraserburgh - 11 miles

The last day of the Formartine & Buchan Way, 11 small miles left to completion. This time my mate was back on board so I wasn't crying from loneliness. :lol:

We caught the bus from Aberdeen to Strichen at 9:05am and arrived there for 10:15, went into the Co-Op for supplies before heading for Fraserburgh.

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Strichen Copey

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Heading off on the trail

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Strichen Station

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Strichen Station, once a station, now a house

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brave froggy, posed for the camera

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another random station

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followed by another random bridge across the railway

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Wild Deer

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almost there... light at the end of the tunnel as they say!

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Hut!!

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This is a posh one

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When nature takes over

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full steam ahead

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Yippeee another hut!

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but this one has shut up shop :(

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abandoned buildings, fun time :D

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TAXXXI!

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On this occasion I think I'll be keeping out of there if I want to make it to Fraserburgh

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Worth a look around though

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Yoohoo anyone in?

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looks like nobody is home... but we had our little explore :wink:

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onwards and upwards

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ruins

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bonny old hoose

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and another abandoned house, nobody's liking this area

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Could make a good wee bothy

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me posing

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another wee station

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Sheep really are anti-social creatures

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Finally, Fraserburgh in the distance

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The sand dunes of Fraserburgh Beach

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We made it!

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Pretty views from the top of the Dunes

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me posing on the dunes

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Just so we know where we are

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The fishing town of Fraserburgh

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Fraserburgh Harbour

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Fraserburgh Town

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Once arriving in the town we found our way to the Bus Station with the help of a local, in excellent timing as we only had 9 minutes to wait for the next bus, then it was back to Aberdeen for a pint ... or 6.

The Formartine & Buchan Way is basically a peaceful stroll in the countryside, if that is what you enjoy then I recommend it. It is probably more suited to cyclists.

There are no campsites or wild camping areas along the route. I didn't consider camping along this one due to the time of year and the location, being close to home, but if you were wild camping you could probably find somewhere to throw up a hammock or pitch a tent. Certainly would have no problem finding accommodation on the towns and villages throughout.

Hope you enjoyed the report as much as I enjoyed burning the calories. :)
Last edited by andrewl7642 on Wed Apr 16, 2014 10:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
andrewl7642
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Re: The Formartine & Buchan Way, Aberdeenshire

Postby Gordie12 » Wed Apr 16, 2014 8:47 pm

You seem to have a bad case of ruinitis there :lol: :lol:

Didn't really know much about this walk so I found this report really interesting. With the cycle tracks (seemed to be mainly early on) it looked like a fair bit of tarmac bashing but still good fun.

Thanks for sharing.
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Gordie12
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Re: The Formartine & Buchan Way, Aberdeenshire

Postby andrewl7642 » Wed Apr 16, 2014 10:05 pm

Yeah, tarmac paths at the start and end but inbetween is mostly tracks and trails, what I prefer.
The huts en-route make great shelter from the rain :) Not that I encountered much rain thanks to studying the weather before venturing out. Bit muddy in places though where there has been rain. Good wee walk when it stays dry. Heading back to the Deeside line next :lol:
andrewl7642
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Posts: 213
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Re: The Formartine & Buchan Way, Aberdeenshire

Postby Tomsmum » Sat May 10, 2014 3:15 pm

Thanks a useful and informative report. Looking forward to walking or cycling some of this this spring
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Re: The Formartine & Buchan Way, Aberdeenshire

Postby steviez » Sun Dec 04, 2016 12:19 pm

A great set of photo's and walk guide, the walk seems a little linear in terms of straightness though with nothing particularly spectacular en route to break it up ?
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Re: The Formartine & Buchan Way, Aberdeenshire

Postby Jamboman » Mon Mar 13, 2017 11:55 am

Have been looking at doing the Deeside Line walk and this one, thanks for sharing your thoughts and pictures, looks a good walk.
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Re: The Formartine & Buchan Way, Aberdeenshire

Postby FriedOnions » Mon Nov 19, 2018 4:20 am

Thanks for the pics, going to do this one myself. I've only done Ellon to Udny Station and back again but going to start at Dyce next time and walk to Ellon.

One thing about your pics: the station you've tagged as Udny Station (now a house) is actually the old Logiereive Staton. Udny Station's station was where the flowerbed pic was taken. None of the old buildings remain there, unfortunately.
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