Category: Around the Club

Local Services

Local Services

Although St Mary’s Loch can be considered slightly remote – it is a beautiful location which is very rewarding to visit.

Below are links to help you plan your visit.

The Gordon Arms

The Gordon Arms is an old coaching Inn nestling in the Yarrow Valley. It was a favourite haunt of James Hogg, Sir Walter Scott and even Robert Burns was said to have stopped here.

The Glen Cafe

The Glen cafe offers beautiful views over the loch whilst you relaxing in comfortable surroundings. Fresh food individually prepared to order. Open for all day breakfast, a varied lunch menu and home cooking and baking a speciality. Hot and cold drinks and ice cream. Popular with cyclists and bikers.

Outdoor Activities

Whilst we love sailing – we are the first to admit that the wonderful countryside around St Mary’s offers other great outdoor activities. Below are some links giving you ideas on what you can do when there is no wind:

Nearest Towns

There are three major towns located within 15-30 mins drive from the club:

  • Peebles – a Royal Burgh since 1152
  • Selkirk – your closet town at the head of the Ettrick and Yarrow Valleys
  • Moffat – 3 mins from the A74(M)


Ian Malcolm is the club’s resident wildlife expert who has identified almost a 1,000 species in the club grounds. Photographs of some of the species can be seen are in folders in the clubhouse. 

If you would like to become involved in recording what’s on the site or would like more information on what’s there or if you’d simply like to identify something you’ve seen (preferably with a photograph!), please feel free to ask Ian.

Getting involved

The Club’s field is a remarkably wildlife-rich area. Much of it is fairly undisturbed and we make a reasonable effort to maintain the species diversity in those areas that we do actively manage: for example, we try to delay grass-cutting of the main area of the field until the wild flowers have set their seeds. It would be great if we could keep it like this, or even improve it, for those who come after us.

With the advent of digital cameras and the internet, especially sites like iSpot, it has become relatively easy for non-experts to get expert help to identify the species they see around them. Ian has taken advantage of this to begin to compile a list of all the species that we can find in – or above – the club’s land. So far Ian has identified, at least tentatively, almost 1000 species and he knows there are many more to come. Is there just one species of midge biting us? What about all the spiders scuttling about in the grass? And how many different species of bats are flying around at dusk and dawn?

Ian sends all the records to the local biological recording organisation, The Wildlife Information Centre, at Vogrie Country Park. From there it goes to various other recording organisations; some of it has already reached the latest release of the National Biodiversity Network Atlas. All of this will help to monitor the on-going biological health of both the Club’s site and the wider area as well as helping to map the distribution of species across the country.

You can view a gallery of wildlife observed at the Loch here.

Grey Mare’s Tail Nature Reserve

If you want to explore more wildlife then the Grey Mare’s Tail Nature Reserve is a paradise for wildlife enthusiasts who wish to observe the rich collection of some of southern Scotland’s most rare upland plants as well as peregrines, ring ouzels and feral goats. The reserve is a short drive or cycle from the clubhouse.

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