Loch Long Tree Clearance

Yet more stunning scenic views from the train have been recovered on the WHL at Morelaggan, above Loch Long, after removal of lineside vegetation. The Network Rail/ScotRail Alliance completed the work, having committed to continue tree removal following previous successful clearances led by the Friends at other locations on the railway.

The cleared section is around 350 metres in length where the Glasgow-Fort William line runs high over the hillside above Loch Long, between Garelochhead and Arrochar & Tarbet stations. The views above show the scenery which has now been opened up to train travellers; looking north (left) and south (right) as ScotRail ‘Sprinter’ units are seen passing. Like many locations along the West Highland Lines, vegetation had gradually grown through the decades and obscured the views. Contractors TRAC completed the work on behalf of Network Rail and the Friends’ Norman McNab is helping out as a consultant for the current programme of tree clearance work.

Morelaggan was just one location on the society’s ‘wish list’ for view recovery and we are pleased to hear that work is about to commence at another spot, on the Oban line. This is on the approach to Glencruitten Summit, where the line climbs uphill looking out towards Oban bay. Previous tree clearance – completed by the Friends in coordination with other local organisations – revealed beautiful scenic views at locations such as Loch Awe, Glen Falloch and Glenfinnan Viaduct. It is pleasing to see Network Rail and ScotRail continuing the work, with the West Highland Line being marketed as one of Scotland’s ‘Great Scenic Rail Journeys’.

Published 23/09/16