Outdoor Swim Review – Loch Ard (Iain)

Whenever something bad happens in my town I joke with my wife “I bet whoever did it wasn’t a local!”

I say that because that’s all I ever see when I look at the Facebook page for my town. Load of posts about visitors up to no good. As if we haven’t got any bad ‘uns in our own town..!

Kinlochard is a beautiful wee hamlet but it had been overrun by visitors in the last year. I’ve heard the locals aren’t as welcoming as they once were. I don’t have that much sympathy. If I moved somewhere beautiful and easily accessible by others I’d expect people to turn up all the time. I don’t understand why people move somewhere beautiful and then complain that about other people who also want to come to their beautiful place.

But I do think everyone should respect each other which means Loch Ard is a difficult place to review. Its a beautiful spot for a swim but by going there I’m also contributing to ruining the place for the locals who live there.

My conclusion is to only go when its quieter. Either first thing in the morning or during the week. In the hope that won’t bother others too much.


Ease of Access:

Rating: 2 out of 5.

It used to be easy to park in Kinlochard but a combination of too many visitors, covid restrictions and the closure of the village hall means there is much less tolerance and space for visitors. It can be very busy at the weekend so get there early or park further away and then walk/bike to the start.

Water quality:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

The water is pretty clear for a loch. The west end is pretty sheltered so there aren’t many waves even on a windy day

Swim Quality:

Rating: 3 out of 5.

A good place to swim but it can be very busy so don’t expect to have it to yourself.

Other People:

Rating: 1 out of 5.

It can be very busy.

Would I go back: 

It is good for beginners and it is a great starting point for people who want to try outdoor swimming

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