Monday, 5 September 2011

Day 37 - Tyndrum to Kingshouse hotel (19 miles)

A late ish start to the day with a quick trip to the local shop which boasts of being the last shop until Fort William. I got energy food for emergency rations. I wouldn't want to be stranded with nothing to eat. I now have enough rations for 2 days. Better safe than sorry.

As I set off I passed a Scottish Water worker, said hi, moved on. He the drove passed me and stopped to open a gate. He beckoned me through but I said I'd close it for him. He thanked me and drove off. Gate fastened I moved on. 200 yards up the track was the Scottish Water worker. We struck up a conversation and when he spoke about the WHW you could tell he was extremely passionate about it. He loved it! He told me of a museum to visit (Dumrobin Castle) near Inverness when o get there. This guy was right about everything else today, with his explanations of stunning Ba Bridge, that I thought I would definitely give Dumrobin Castle a go when I got near, and if time allowed.

Again it was a day of wondering when NOT to take pictures. The scenery is epic here. The start of the day was dominated by Beinn Dorain which rises up 3000 ft from the valley floor in one colossal sweeping motion. The WHW only rises to about 200 ft above the valley floor so Beinn Dorain always dominates you spectacularly. SNAP SNAP, camera shots a plenty.

The WHW then ducks back under the train track that runs parallel to the A82. The Way underpasses the track at Bridge of Orchy station. At the start of this End to End challenge I used to find myself thinking "just go sight seeing instead, jump on the train/bus/plane (delete as appropriate)" but that thought doesn't occur to me anymore. With 700+ miles under my belt I'd be robbing myself.

The WHW then climbs up over the side of Mam Carraigh to an altitude of just over 1000ft. It rises fairly quick but also drops away quickly, down to Invernon hotel. Places are few and far between now so you'll find a hotel constitutes a place on a map. Invernon hotel being one such place. I stopped for a quick pint and snickers bar then made off again.

The rest of the day was spent walking on an old road made of compacted stones. This was very very hard under foot and the Scottish Water worker had warned me of it. I took pain killers and did my usual - try ignoring the pain. This worked as I managed to pick up pace.

I caught up with Ally (not sure how to spell here name) a fellow WHW walker. We chatted for a while which is always nice. It alleviates the loneliness that sometimes creeps in. We parted company after a short while, she was due a break. I've ditched my breaks now. I generally take between 6.5 and 7.5 hours to cover 20 miles and if I have a break it will be less than 5 minutes (apart from today, I wanted a pint!)

I'm in the Kings house hotel which is built in the shadow of some monster mountains. Although they're huge, they're not oppressive, just stunning. So I'm going to get some food, eat, drink, and look forward to the fact I have a very short day tomorrow.

Tomorrow is a 9 mile (yes, just 9!) and I think my feet are going to LOVE it! I do have The Devil's Staircase to climb but again Mr Scottish Water man said it isn't that bad. We will see!


  1. Said it before - say it again - "you are a legend". Hope your digs are ok tonight so you can have a lie in in the morning before strolling down for a leisurely breakfast then off to enjoy your leisurely stroll to Kinlochleven. You deserve the odd "easy" day I reckon. Well done Bruv. Keep on Keeping on.

  2. Well I'm glad you didn't take the easy route and just go sight seeing because I don't think you would have seen half of this stunning scenery you are in awe of. I feel quite envious. Don't worry about the lack of miles tomorrow, don't forget you picked up a few extra when you were down our way, remember we told you that.You deserve a leisurly stroll now and again. This will probably allow you to be even more inspired by that beautiful country.We have been looking on Google earth following your route and oh boy does it look rugged and beautiful. ENJOY, keep smiling and walking.We are still beside you.

  3. hi yes enjoy even more so tomorrow if that is at all possible, give your feet a real pampering, they have carried you well, almost on your final run now ,continue to enjoy, happy walking,