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Dunkeld - Dalnacardoch - Ruthven - Aviemore - Inverness Military Road

Military Road (18th Century)

Site Name Dunkeld - Dalnacardoch - Ruthven - Aviemore - Inverness Military Road

Classification Military Road (18th Century)

Alternative Name(s) General Wade's Military Road

Canmore ID 112238

Site Number NH73SE 28

NGR NH 7829 3287

NGR Description NH 7973 3000 to NH 7500 3432

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number AC0000807262. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2023.

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Administrative Areas

  • Council Highland
  • Parish Moy And Dalarossie
  • Former Region Highland
  • Former District Inverness
  • Former County Inverness-shire

Archaeology Notes

NH73SE 28.00 7973 3000 to 7500 3432 MR 2 (Formerly Lin 501 [part of]).

NH73SE 28.01 NH 7942 3164 Excavation

NH73SE 28.02 NH 797 300 Bridge

NH73SE 28.03 NH 7534 3416 Culvert

NH73SE 28.04 NH 787 322 Inn

The military road initially takes a course beside the river and there are traces of a bridge at NH 797 300 (NH73SE 28.02). It ascends to a location where it crosses the A9 at the milestone at NH 794 317. It then crosses the railway and loops down to link again with the A9 at Dalmagarry, where a kingshouse existed at NH 787 322 (NH73SE 28.04). It then crosses the modern road a number of times, there being signs of the Wade road on either side of the modern road as far N as the old school at Moy. At NH 775 337, opposite the school, the route heads off to the left on what becomes a walkable track heading over the hills into Strath Nairn. However, at the start, all traces have been destroyed by the railway and the A9 for about a mile. It traverses some forestry, becomes a gravelled road and then an easily distinguished and typical Wade road, a bit wet in stretches. For approximately a mile it passes through heather.

J B Salmond 1938; W Taylor 1976; J and A Baker 1982.

NH 7973 3000 to NH 7972 3006 Wade's road visible as slight hollow way and causeway easing gradient.

NH 7972 3006 to NH 7969 3029 Wade's road destroyed by river erosion.

NH 7969 3029 to NH 7960 3065 Wade's road well preserved disused grass track c. 4m wide between flanking banks.

NH 7960 3065 to NH 7964 3107 no trace, probable course.

NH 7964 3107 to NH 7963 3131 road descends steep slope obliquely, thereby easing gradient.

NH 7963 3131 to NH 7960 3145 Wade's road well preserved through wood.

NH 7960 3145 to NH 7934 3173 forestry road on line.

NH 7934 3173 to NH 7927 3177 Wade's road well preserved disused grass track c. 4m wide between flanking banks.

NH 7927 3177 to NH 7918 3180 road destroyed by railway.

NH 7918 3180 to NH 7886 3203 Wade's road well preserved disused grass track c. 4m wide between flanking banks.

NH 7886 3203 to NH 7883 3207 Wade's road destroyed by railway.

NH 7881 3209 vague trace of Wade's road below embankment.

NH 7881 3210 to NH 7870 3224 no trace, probable course of road.

NH 7870 3224 to NH 7835 3280 modern road on line.

NH 7835 3280 to NH 7784 3349 Wade's road well preserved disused grass track c. 4m wide between flanking banks.

NH 7784 3349 to NH 7780 3355 modern track on line.

NH 7780 3355 to NH 7774 3358 no trace.

NH 7774 3358 to NH 7768 3360 Wade's road well preserved disused grass track between flanking banks.

NH 7768 3360 to NH 7739 3372 no trace.

NH 7739 3372 to NH 7691 3390 forestry track on line.

NH 7691 3390 to NH 7629 3396 modern road on line.

NH 7629 3396 to NH 7500 3432 Wade's road well preserved disused track. Carriageway c.4m wide. Flanking banks c.0.3m high, c.2m thick.

NH 7534 3416 Wade's single span culvert 4.4m wide falling into disrepair (NH73SE 28.03).

Visited by OS November 1966.

To the S of the A9 and railway line at Dalmagarry the fabric of the military road could be well preserved beneath the dense overgrowth of a short section of heather covered track with banks on either side. A further feature which may well be on the route of Wade?s road is a lay-by on the N side of the railway track.

The military road is now under tarmac in the section between Dalmagarry farm (NH7870 3225) and Moy school (NH 7780 3350).

The route is then obliterated by the A9 until a short section of rough track, subsequently tarmac road E of Lynemore, follows the Wade road. Between NH 7626 3394 and NH 7505 3432 dense overgrowth affects a heather and grass covered track traversing open moorland. The military route follows this line and original road fabric may well be preserved under the overgrowth of this approximately 3m wide track with flanking banks. Some water and weather erosion is discernible, particularly in the vicinity of the culvert at NH 7534 3416 (NH73SE 28.03).

M Logie (Highland Council) 1997; NMRS, MS/1007/2.


Watching Brief (13 July 2016 - 25 August 2016)

Soil Engineering Ltd commissioned Alder Archaeology to undertake an archaeological watching brief on engineering test pits in advance of dualling the A9 Perth – Inverness road. The present works were located along the A9 corridor between Tomatin and Moy.

No new archaeological remains were discovered. However, two test-pits were relocated to avoid a known surviving stretch of the 18th-century military road laid out by General Wade, and a known cairn commemorating the ‘Rout of Moy’, an episode in the second Jacobite rising (1745 – 6).

Information from Alder Archaeology Ltd.


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