Canoeing and Kayaking on : River Balvaig

The Balvaig is a fairly short river on the eastern edge of the Trossachs. The river is a perfect place for canoeing, as it meanders between Loch Voil and Loch Lubnaig.

In normal conditions, it is a quite straightforward grade I paddle, however it has been said that it has "Grade 5 trees" meaning that there are a lot of hanging branches to avoid, possible fallen trees, and you need to be able to manouevre your canoe competently in a flowing river. As long as you are aware of this, you should have no problems.

The surrounding scenery is fantastic, and you can paddle along gently in your canoe whilst looking at the hills around you. At the end, Loch Lubnaig is a beautiful place, and if you wish to extend your canoe trip you can paddle down the loch.

Paddle Point

Grade I river that can be done on its own as a nice paddle, or combined with a longer couple of days including Lochs Voil and Lubnaig.

In high water levels, the Balvaig is prone to fallen and hanging trees becoming strainers, so care and experience are needed in these conditions.

Included in this blog on Song of the Paddle

Paddle Point

There is a cable type "transporter" bridge strung across the river as you approach a farm.

In some higher water conditions this will be at head or canoe height and can be a hazard. It will also potentially trap debris, trees, etc, so be aware as you approach this section just before the river swings into the narrower valley down to Strathyre.

Paddle Point

Put in from grass on N side of bridge, parking in layby nearby for a few cars.

This is a nice grade 1 river, but strong flow and many low trees mean it needs to be run with care.

Paddle Point


Easy launching into Balvaig from the campsite, but if going downstream to Loch Lubnaig it can be difficult to paddle back against the flow.