“A tour of some of the best riding at Glentress featuring a number of switchbacks and contoured turns... and great views.”
— Lost Justpastnowhere
Glentress is one of the 7 Stanes of Scotland which are well-developed mountain biking trail systems with facilities including bike rental, a small cafe, both bike and people showers, and a ropes course. There is a nominal fee for use of the facilities, including parking, so bring some coins.
The route is well marked so it isn't really necessary to have a GPS file and there will likely be plenty of people around in case of emergency. The trail format is a number of fun singletrack sections interspersed with short forest road sections. There are plenty of rock gardens, skinnies, and small jumps throughout to keep you busy.
The Red Route starts at the main carpark but alternate parking is available at the Buzzard's Nest (which would save about 3-4 miles and 500 ft of climbing).
The trail starts climbing a short section on forest road but this quickly changes to singletrack through the forest. After about 2.5 miles, you'll come to the Buzzard's Nest carpark and the freeride park. From Buzzard's Nest, you'll climb roughly another three miles to the "Spooky Wood." Much of the climb is on forest roads, but there are several singletrack sections to break this up, including the section through the Spooky Wood near the top which features a number of switchbacks.
Shortly after the top, you'll reach the Caresman Hill overlook where you can look across the Tweed Valley. From here, it is almost all downhill.
The next section of singletrack features bermed turns and a few tabletops. Once you cross the forest road at the bottom of this section, you'll have a short climb before entering a particularly steep 0.5-mile singletrack descent. This segment of the Red Trail is nicknamed "Super G". At the end of Super G, you'll follow a forest road again before entering two additional singletrack sections: "Matrix" and "Lombard Street".
At the exit of Lombard Street, another short forest road segment takes you to next singletrack segment: "Magic Mushroom". The Magic Mushroom segment is shared with the advanced Black Route, so this segment is a little bit more technical than the previous ones. Magic Mushroom ends at another short forest road section.
This takes you back towards Buzzard's Nest. You'll intersect the outbound segment of the Red Trail. At this intersection, you can return either to the main carpark, to the Buzzard's Nest carpark, or go for a second round as appropriate.