Northern Scotland, ScotlandArea:
142.00 Hectares / 350.88 Acres
Offers over £485,000Status:
- A mixed commercial forest with a significant volume of maturing timber.
- Located within an area of outstanding beauty, surrounded by unique upland habitat.
- Challenging deer stalking with some excellent fishing nearby.
Raphan Forest is located in a stunningly beautiful part of Caithness in the north of Scotland and situated east of the small settlement of Forsinard. The area is best known for its wild scenery, important Peatland habitat and its challenging deer stalking and fishing.
The nearest railway station is conveniently located at Altnabreac, just 1 mile from the forest and the A897 Forsinard to Melvich public road is reached via a 9 mile section of shared private road.
The forest was established in stages between 1985 – 1987 on moorland as part of a much larger and extensive commercial forest complex, now known as Strathmore Forest.
Raphan was planted with a self-thinning intimate mix of Sitka spruce and Lodgepole pine which has established well on the underlying mix of peaty podzol, gleys and Peatland, resulting in an average Yield Class of 14 in the Sitka spruce and Yield Class 8 in the Lodgepole pine.
Timber harvesting can be anticipated to commence from 2030 onwards with harvesting of the most mature compartments followed by gradual removal of the entire crop as it reaches financial maturity. A good forest access road formation extends along part of the top edge of the forest which will facilitate timber extraction in future.
Due to the presence of the Forsinard Flows National Nature Reserve and the Special Protection Area that surrounds the forest, Scottish Forestry and their consultees have advised that they would prefer that no replanting takes place following felling of the current crop in Raphan. This is due to the edge effect the forest creates and its impact on threatened moorland bird species found in this area. The forests adjoining Raphan to the north and south have been felled by the owners (RSPB) to restore the underlying natural habitat.
This presents a unique opportunity to invest in a substantial area of maturing timber as a cash crop with the potential for an owner to consider reducing their carbon footprint through the supply of timber and thereafter restore moorland and Peatland habitat. Some of the drained Peatland may be eligible for grant funding through Nature Scotland’s Peatland Action Scheme.
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