West Highland Way, Scotland

Trip conducted and provided by:
Troop 8 – Chatham, NJ
July 2011

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West Highland Way, Scotland

1. Summary:

Two weeks of awesomeness on the West coast of Scotland. The 154Km (96miles) route starts at Milngavie (just north of Glasgow) and passes through Mugdock Country Park, follows the shores of Loch Lomond, passing Ben Lomond, through Glen Falloch and Strathfillan, crossing Rannoch Moor, past Buachaille Etive Mor to the head of Glencoe, climbing the Devil’s Staircase, descending to sea level to cross the River Leven at the head of Loch Leven before entering Lairigmor and Glen Nevis and finishes at Gordon Square in Fort William.

The terrain ranges from lowland moors, dense woodland and rolling hills, to high mountainous regions in the Scottish Highlands. These environments provide habitats for a diverse range of wildlife species, both flora and fauna. You also pass through thousands of year of history in the region.

2. Participants:

ASM’s            ASM’s Basso, Foy, Villars and Wyse
Scouts             9 Scouts ages: 16-17

3.  Itinerary:

Day 1: (10mi/16km) Milngavi to Gartness.
Terrain: Trails, Roads, Farm Trails, Mostly Flat.
Side hikes: Glengoyne Distillery(1 mile round trip). Drumclog Moor Castle (2 miles round trip)

Day 2: (16mi/26km) Gartness to Rowardennan.
Terrain: Trails, Roads, Mostly Flat but big climb by Conic hill.
Side hikes: Drymen for lunch and ice-cream(2 miles round trip). Conic Hill (1km round trip)
Other: War Memorial and view of Loch Lomond

Day 3: (13.5mi/22km) Rowardennan to Inverarnan.
Terrain: Trails, Roads, Very rough undulating trails.

Day 4: (6mi/9.5km) Inverarnan to Crianlarich.
Terrain: Trails, Mostly Flat.

Day 5: (3mi/5km) Crianlarich to Strathfillan.
Terrain: Trails, One Big Climb and one Big Decent.

Day 6: (10mi/16km) Strathfillan to Bridge of Orchy.
Terrain: Trails, Mostly Flat.

Day 7: (13mi/21km) Bridge of Orchy to Kingshouse.
Terrain: Trails, In the Mountains but Mostly Flat.

Day 8: (8.5mi/14km) Kingshouse to Kinlochleven.
Terrain: Trails, One long gradual Accent, then one steep Decent at the end.

Day 9: (12.5mi/20km) Kinlochleven to Glen Nevis.
Terrain: Trails, One long gradual Accent, then one steep Decent at the end.

Day 10: Hike into Fort William to finish the trail and Ben Nevis Mountain Side Hike(tallest Mountain in the UK)


4. Administrative:

Permit Info:
Flights:   Newark to Glasgow return
Maps Used: Maps from Book (see below)
Ref Books: West Highland Way by Charlie Loram
Useful Web links: http://www.west-highland-way.co.uk
Useful Contact information: N/A


5. Lessons Learned/Taught:

  • Loch Lomond (largest lake in the UK) is absolutely massive
  • Midges are no joke you will need head nets. You will buy one there if you don’t bring one, I promise you that.
  • Ben Nevis is not for everyone, but if you are up for it it’s an all day even
  • Note: White gas fuel for stoves is not easy to find in the UK and when you do find it its very expensive.