Day 6 – Devils Staircase

Set off in drizzle, which wasn’t going to stop all day. A zig zag path took us to the top of Devils Staircase – the highest point of the Way at 550m. The wind was gale force and the drizzle had turned to sleet. By now we were at the snow line so we stopped at the top to make a snowman. 

From there it was a steady 5 miles down to our B&B at Kinlochleven, sea level. We were fortunate that the cloud base was high enough not to obscure the views, which would have been fantastic on a better day. 

It was a short day today, a welcome relief after yesterday’s long slog. We arrived in Kinlochleven before 1pm, so dried out in the local hostelry until our B&B opened. We even saw our luggage transfer company – AMS, who have done a great job lugging our bags from place to place. 

It was hard to leave this cosy place this morning:

 
   

  

  

  

  

Evening meal at Alt na Leven B&B! 

 

Day 5 – 19.5 miles to Kingshouse.

Wow! What a day! Set off at 8.30 after a fantastic breakfast. Pretty easy walking along good tracks. We thought the scenery was great, until we reached Bridge of Orchy, then it just got better and better. There was a convenient hotel at the half way point, which we put to good use. After a much needed sandwich and cuppa we set off on the next leg – 9 miles across the open and exposed Rannoch Moor. Stunning in good weather but hostile and bleak in the rain. The rain started! Fortunately it stopped very quickly and the whole walk was a mixture of gasps and wows as we progressed. It was truly bleak, but what views. A fantastic place and we are so grateful that the weather behaved so we could enjoy it. 

Kingshouse Hotel was a welcome sight  after 8 hours on our feet, and guess what? Our room has a bath! Bliss! 

Sorry, no piccies – wifi is naff! Check back tomorrow!

   
      

Day 4 – to Tyndrum

After a very comfortable night at Beinglas campsite, we woke to a heavy frost. After yesterday’s tough walk we were looking forward to an easier route along forest tracks. The terrain was much easier going today, and the views were just as good. We crossed the busy A82 several times, before heading through quiet forests with pine needles underfoot. The views just got better and we had numerous photo stops. No hotels for coffee stops today, just a pretty little stream for a lunch stop.

We’re at Glengarry B&B tonight – sitting in the conservatory eating flapjack and having a much needed cuppa. Tomorrow is the long hard slog across Rannoch Moor… 

   
         

Day 3 – To Beinglass

Beautiful sunny morning, clear blue skies, sun glinting on the snow covered mountains. We’ve seen deer and wild mountain goats. Lunchtime coffee stop at a conveniently placed hotel. The scenery is simply stunning! 

   

  What a long tough day. The track alongside the loch was hard going, clambering over rocks and tree stumps for mile after mile after mile. Certainly took it’s toll on our knees! The rain that was forecast held off, and waterproofs were packed away. The B&B cabins at Beinglas campsite were a welcome sight, and very nice too!
Apparently today was the toughest – we’ll let you know if we agree after a 19 mile trek on Saturday!

Day 2 Drymen to Rowardennan

A drizzly start, after a fantastic breakfast of scrambled egg wrapped in lashings of smoked salmon. Rounded a corner and got our first glimpse of Loch Lomond, that will be our companion for the next two days. Took the hard route up Conic hill to be rewarded by the rain stopping and amazing views of the loch. Coffee stop  at the pub at the bottom.

The remaining 7 miles were along loch side paths, up, down, round, up again. The weather improved and waterproofs came off. Today’s reward is a swish hotel room with views of evening sun on the loch and snowy hills.        

   
      View from our room! Reckon I might stay here for the rest of the week and just lap up that view!

    

On Our Way!

9am, the sun’s coming out, and we’re on our way! 

 

So that’s day one under the belt. A relatively easy day’s walk, arrived really early so killing time in the local pub! A real mish mash of weather, warm sun then a short down pour. Oh, there were a couple of diversions – the second looked very interesting…
   

 

  

  

En Route

Stopped at Penrith for a quick coffee. BBC radio Scotand has just announced that the snow gates are now open! Not sure if we are relieved or not! Now we’re playing the game of first one to spot a car with skis on the roof. Maybe we should have packed those crampons…

Lovely B&B, lovely view of tomorrow’s hills! 

 

West Highland way

Final training walk along the Pocklington Canal completed – thanks to Maureen and Martin for the C,C&C! (Company, coffee and cake!)

Let the packing commence, for tomorrow we set off for Scotland. Sadly the sun has gone South, to be replaced by rain and snow. On the plus side, the midges don’t like wet and cold!