Walls - Burrastow and Watsness

Heading south west of out Walls this route first visits Burrastow before making a loop around through Watsness and Dale of Walls.

Distance: 26km / 16.2 miles  (Circular route)

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Just over 0.5 miles (1km) out of Walls there is a signposted turning to the left for Burrastow. The route presented here takes the looping road around Lera Voe in order to enjoy wonderful views at Burrastow over Vaila Sound. On the south shore of Lera Voe is the private jetty and restored shore lodge for Vaila Hall on the island of Vaila.

From the end of the road at Burrastow House return to the head of Lera Voe and turn left to take the road through Vesquoy for 1 mile (2km) where route climbs up onto the moors, and then turn left at the next junction. Follow this reasonably straight road with not too many climbs west for almost 2 miles (3km) to where the road forks. Here take the left fork to for a short distance towards Watsness. This is a great viewpoint across the lochs to the cliffs beyond and across the sea to an imposing Foula just 15 miles (25km) away.

Return to the road fork for the short climb up Simili Field and then the descent to Dale of Walls. There is a rough track to the left that leads to a hidden shingle beach and this a good spot to enjoy a picnic and watch for marine life and sea birds. The Dale of Walls is also where the route links with the walk around the magnificent cliffs of Deep Dale and Sandness Hill. Details of this walk is on Walk Shetland website: Deepdale and Sandness Hill Circular

From Dale of Walls the route is mostly flat and straight for 2.5 miles (4km) along the road that follows the burn north-east to join the A971 at Stanevatstoe Loch. This road through the Dale was built as recently as about 1980, but too late to stop the depopulation of this scenic valley.

A right turn on to the A971 is the start of a route back to Walls with very many bends and short climbs that makes for a great ride but the road is a fairly quiet one with a good suface. This 3 mile (5km) section to the junction with the side road leading to Walls is through some of most outstanding heather covered peat-land in Shetland; you will see many traditional peat cuttings by the roadside. In late summer the hills in this area turn a deep purple when the heather blooms.

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