Although the full damage from last month’s storm is still being assessed, it is estimated that more than eight million trees were damaged, accounting for between 1 and 1.5 million cubic metres for woodland and forestry across Scotland.
With more people expecting to be out walking on estates over the festive period, land managers have urged those visiting to take care and follow signage and guidance when out and about around woodland areas.
Sarah-Jane Laing, chief executive at Scottish Land & Estates, said: “Frosty festive walks are a lovely way to spend time over Christmas and New Year and estates are expecting more people to be accessing land as they get outdoors and burn off some calories.
"There was a significant increase in walkers during the early stages of the pandemic and we’d expect this to occur again.
“The severe impact of Storm Arwen is still being felt across rural Scotland and in many places, it will be months before estates can fully address the issues of trees that have fallen.
While there will be some local knowledge of where damage has occurred, it is especially important for all walkers – especially those travelling from further afield – to follow signage that should have been erected and take care not to access locations which may have been closed off.
Walkers are also being urged to familiarise themselves with the Outdoor Access Code.
Ms Laing added: “Estates are delighted to have visitors enjoying their walks at Christmas but it is important that everyone keeps safe when doing so.
"We would encourage people to familiarise themselves with the Scottish Outdoor Access Code which provides useful guidance to estates and members of the public.”
Angus was one of the worst-hit areas along with the Borders and East Lothian into Galloway, Aberdeenshire and Perthshire.