Stonehaven to Aberdeen (15 miles)

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The route from Stonehaven to Aberdeen heads west, north and then east – we at Ride the North thought it wasn’t the best odea to ask you to cycle on the A90! The route is 15.6 miles in length with 938 feet of climbing and a high point of 492 feet above sea-level. Whilst there is a tough climb early on the route, the remainder is rolling so has been given a difficulty rating of 5.

Stonehaven lies in a nature harbour, and fishing was the chief commerce of the town into the early 20th century, with marine services and tourism being the dominant industries today. The most notable building in the town is the Tolbooth Museum, which was historically used as both a courthouse and a jail. Two miles to the south are the medieval ruins of Dunnotter Castle. The castle, which is open to the public, has a bloody history and played a prominent role in a number of important historical events, including the Jacobite uprisings of 1715 and 1745. Stonehaven is renowned for its Hogmanay fireball ceremony, and you can find an RSPB reserve (and 130,000 breeding birds) just to the south. The fish ‘n chips are some of the best in the country, though a pre-cycle portion isn’t necessarily recommended!

Starting in Stonehaven Market Square, you immediately head uphill and into the toughest section of the whole route. The first 5 miles are all uphill, with the first 1.7 miles being the steepest. You will be cycling on the Netherley Road (the B979) which is quite busy so please use caution. The top of the climb is also the highest point, and it is worth taking some time to look at the stunning panoramic views – south to the Mearns; west to Aberdeenshire and the foothills of the Cairngorms; and east to Stonehaven, beautifully framed by the North Sea.

You come off the main road at mile 6.4 and join quiet, narrow roads through farmland and woodland. The cycling is lovely, the surroundings are tranquil, and the views are tremendous. The road is mainly downhill from here, but still undulates a fair amount – a westerly wind is your friend! You twice cross the Aberdeen ring-road at 8.6 and 9.5 miles, before continuing on rolling roads to Banchory Devenick where you will get to enjoy a steep 1.7 mile descent – its great fun, but the road gets busier and is quite narrow. You then turn right and cycle for half a mile before having to negotiate two very busy roundabouts. The final stretch takes you along the River Dee and you finish to the Duthie Park, where you can enjoy an ice-cream and a visit to the renowned winter gardens (and cactus house!) The park is only 1.5 miles from Aberdeen city centre where food and drink options are aplenty.

By clicking on the ‘play’ symbol on the graphic below you can see route map. The elevation profile of the ride can be seen via the Hills tab with files for use with a GPS a device also available for download. If you take any photos of the route that you’d like to share, please submit to neil@velodays.com
Onward rides from Aberdeen can be found here

Route map for Stonehaven To Aberdeen by Neil Innes on plotaroute.com