The Rothiemurchus Estate, in the Cairngorms National Park, may not be for everyone. Cast an eye over the website, and a plethora of activities cater for the demands of visitors with fat wallets seeking a respite from the city.
I have no problem with the estate’s balance of entrepreneurship and conservation. Although the native pine woodland is scarce in Scotland, accounting for 1% of its former land coverage, the Rothiemurchus Forest always seems able to absorb its visitor toll.
Swathes of Scots Pine are found alongside species such as birch, rowan, willow and alder. Folk with a trained eye (not me!) will enjoy a rich variety of fungi, insects, plants, birds and animals.
But it’s how Rothiemurchus ‘feels’ which I treasure. A walk here is always fresh… cleansing, even.
Wander along a track in the evening, find a clearing and close your eyes. You can almost hear the forest breathing.