Intrepid hillwalkers in Pitlochry were treated to a spectacular sight on Monday 28 August as path repair work began on Ben Vrackie hillside path with the aid of a project-funded helicopter.


Following storm damage in the summer of 2021 the hillside path at Ben Vrackie was left in desperate need of repair. Now thanks to a campaign led by Perth and Kinross Countryside Trust (PKCT), work has finally begun on returning the path to its former glory.


Taking flight throughout Monday, the helicopter was put to work moving approximately 55 tons of scree material across the moorland to the repair site below where it will be used to reinforce the existing path and improve its surface for decades to come.


Scree material being transported by helicopter (c) Morrocco Media

Work on the path over the next few months will include clearing loose material, resurfacing the existing path, and adding drainage and pitching on steeper sections to make sure the newly repaired trail can withstand both the elements and heavy use for as long as possible. While every effort will be made to ensure that the path remains passable users are advised to take extra care in the area.


Speaking on the project, Bid Strachan (Communities Officer – PKCT) said:

“It’s not every day that we see helicopters skimming across our hillsides. While I’m sure some path users were surprised to see the normally peaceful trail buzzing with activity, these flights mark a significant step in our efforts to create a more robust hill path, whilst also restoring the adjoining habitat.


Phase one of the repair work is now completed with the hand selection and delivery of the scree material, but we are still fundraising for the construction. So far, thanks to the generosity of the local community and visitors, we have raised over £1260 but we’re still only halfway towards our target.


If you would like to donate towards the repair project and help us repair even more metres of path, please visit our JustGiving page” 


Helicopter flying high above Ben Vrackie (c) Morrocco Media

With the Pitlochry community being asked to get involved in the project, the Friends of Ben Vrackie (FoBV) group have been volunteering their time as well as their money. In addition to supporting and promoting the campaign through social media, the FoBV have been putting up posters and have committed to carrying out regular maintenance and repair tasks on the improved path once it’s completed.

Up to 5 days training in path building techniques are planned, to give volunteers additional skills for their future maintenance programs and anyone interested, including young people from the community who want a taster of rural skills, can contact PKCT. 


Richard Davison (Trustee – PKCT) and a near neighbour of Ben Vrackie said:

“It’s a real boost to the community to see work starting on the path. Ben Vrackie is a fantastic asset for Pitlochry and the views across highland Perthshire are loved by both locals and tourists.


It’s great to see the local community supporting this project, especially the involvement and support of the Friends of Ben Vrackie in spreading the word and committing to maintaining the improved path in the future.


We’re extremely grateful for their time and effort and hope this encourages others to get involved in helping to protect and celebrate the great outdoors in the Pitlochry area.”


The repair project is due for completion by the end of December and you can make a donation to the project by clicking Here