The West Highland Way

The West Highland Way (warning, horrible looking site)  is a trail from just outside Glasgow to Fort William – about 96 miles or 154km. It was opened as Scotland’s first long-distance footpath in 1980. I remember at the time being a little contemptuous of this walk – I shared the view of the mountaineering community that officialdom should not get involved in walking or the hills.

Now, 30-odd years later, I’m planning a West Highland Way walk. It has become incredibly popular and I have become a bit less elitist about the countryside – official walks open up the countryside to people who wouldn’t otherwise go there.  My motivation for the walk is not just that it’s a walk through some stunning scenery – I want to test some new lightweight gear I’ve bought and, after recovering from cancer treatment, I want to test myself. I haven’t done any serious backpacking for many years. If all goes well, I hope to enter the TGO challenge in 2013 and walk across Scotland from the west to the east coast.

I hope to complete the WHW in 6 days, starting on a Monday and finishing the following Saturday. If the weather is really bad, I can see it taking an extra day but I’m hopeful that won’t happen. My planned route is:

  • Day 1: Milngavie to Garadban Forest
  • Day 2: Garadban Forest to Inversnaid
  • Day 3: Inversnaid to somewhere between Crianlarich and Tyndrum
  • Day 4: Crianlarich to Inveroran
  • Day 5: Inveroran to Kinlochleven
  • Day 6: Kinlochleven to Fort William

I leave in a couple of weeks time – starting on a Monday to avoid the crowds.

2 thoughts on “The West Highland Way

  • April 28, 2012 at 7:31 am

    Sounds good for this Monday as there is a bit of slight weather to shift and then allegedly a blocking high for the rest of the week. Despite the fact I’ve been getting to ski again after winter forgot Scotland I’m keen for a bit of the warm and sunny stuff. I’ll track you down even if you relax your schedule – hope ‘lightweight’ doesn’t mean you’ll freeze your arse off when it gets frosty!!

  • April 29, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    Hi Ian – Warm and sunny maybe a bit optimistic – freezing today but forecast is OK. It’ll be great to see you.


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