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Thread: Backwater Reservoir

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Blairgowrie, east Perthshire

    Default Backwater Reservoir

    The Backwater reservoir nestles in the eastern Angus hills 22 km (14 miles) NW of Forfar, at an altitude of 300 m. Opened in 1969, it is nearly 4 km long (N-S) and about 0.5 km wide. It serves the main towns in Angus as well as Coupar Angus and Blairgowrie, and provides additional supplies to Dundee should the demand on nearby Lintrathen Reservoir become too great. The dam is 500 m long and the reservoir contains some 25 million cubic metres of water. Fishing for wild brown trout is from the bank only.
    A minor road continues north from the B954 at Dykend across the dam and up the east side to Glenhead farm. At the W end of the dam (251590) is a large car park with toilets. The road up the west side of the reservoir is private. The best launch point is about 200m up the west side, easily trolleyable. There is another car park and picnic area, with summer-only toilets, on the east side at 256614. It is also possible to launch from here (carry over fence and down a grassy slope). Despite conifer forestry along the whole west side, the Backwater can be quite a windy exposed spot and you really feel youíre up in the hills. Itís possible to paddle a little way up the Backwater river at the north end.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    NE Scotland


    The Backwater is my 'local' water, it's a pretty nice spot, even when the water level is low it still tends to look scenic. It can be popular on sunny weekends for families walking and cycling and it's common for more serious walkers to use it as a starting point - but you'll not likely see anyone else on the water but the occasional fisherman on the bank (might be me!). Apart from the parking mentioned above there's also a large layby about 1/3rd way up on the North shore that would allow access over a field. The easiest access is from the end of the private road on the south shore - this is owned by Scottish water and has actually left open for several years as the barrier has been broken so you could use it at your own risk! (or use the main carpark and trolley up to an easier access point).
    There's enough water to keep you occupied for most of a day with plenty of spots where you could stop for a brew. It feels more remote than it really is and is particularly nice in winter. It's also very rich in wildlife (osprey, owl, mountain hare, roe deer, common lizard, newts etc. etc.) Only downside is there is occasionally a more neddy element likely on a Friday or Saturday night that leave the usual rubbish behind there backsides...

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