It was a cold bright morning (for a while).
I used the Spa Trail / Viking Way to get out to Horncastle, then through the town and back along the same paths.
As I am planning an overnight walk, next weekend, it was time to get the equipment out of storage and check it over.
I am still using the Colman Bedrock 2 (that I paid £17.50 for) – although I am looking out for something lighter and that I can cook in if needed. To save some weight I have got two longer alloy stakes to use, to peg out the guylines, that hold up the vent cover and the foot of the flysheet. This saves carrying three heavier pegs and gives a better angle to the guylines.
The carabiner is used on my backpack during the day to secure equipment.
All the utensils went through the dishwasher and the fuel bottles refilled. I changed out my beaker for the new one.
The water bladder for the rucksack needed a rinse.
I packed my new sleeping bag into the lightweight compression sack it came with and I was able to pack my silk sleeping bag liner into the same bag.
I store my sleeping mat semi-inflated, so I inflated it fully to check for leaks and then rolled it ready for Saturday.
Bits and Pieces
I sorted through my accessory pack and removed all the extra bits that had accumulated in the pouch over the winter, whilst I have been using it for day walks – watching the grams keeps the weight down.
I checked the batteries in the headlamp.
I also checked the contents of my first aid kit.
I took a trip to the supermarket to get the food for the weekend – Aldi and Tesco – rather than camping shops. Jeremy is going on a Duke of Edinburgh’s expedition this week so I got his food as well.
Tinned sardines with lemon, cream crackers, hazelnut wafers, coffee
On arrival at the campsite – tea and biscuits
Tomato cup-a-soup, Duck flavoured noodles with added salami, instant custard, tea
Chai Latte, Southern Comfort, hazelnut wafers
Tea and fruit and spice oatcakes – first thing in the morning, whilst still in my sleeping bag
Tea, crackers and jam, cereal bars
Salami, cereal bar and coffee
Banana chips, Meerkat jellies, white chocolate buttons
Clothes and Wash Kit
I have packed my long sleeved underwear shirt, long johns and some wool socks – the nights recently have been cold and if needed, I can wear these in my sleeping bag.
The few spare clothes I need were packed into the same dry sack with my sleeping bag and my small wash kit.
Later this week I will check my kit against my spreadsheet check list to make sure I have only 9.5kgs of gear.
Due to the Nevis Range being in the way the way back to Glasgow, by train, from Fort William requires us to go north to Spean Bridge and Tulloch first – a big detour. Hopefully the rain will clear from the windows so we can see the views.
in the station
More wet blurry photos to come!
the stations are quite high on this line
lunch – venison pie and tea
the West Highland Way from the moving train – near Tyndrum
We are now in a coffee bar, in Glasgow. Richard is hallucinating that the waitress looks like “Penny”. Time to go home.
The day started with what is probably the best breakfast of the trip, it included fresh bled scones, smoked salmon and a large selection of berries and fresh fruit. Richard’s West Highland breakfast could barely fit on the plate.
Having dropped down into Kinlochleven yesterday we had to climb back out this morning through the forest to the old military road.
We were slower today than we had planned – so we got to Fort William too late to pass the “official finish line” and take photos. So we will finish this walk tomorrow.
But we did pass the “old finish line”!
Twenty-one miles today – Rannock Moor and Glen Coe. The weather forecast is fair for the day so I have unloaded the gaiters and over trousers.
I got to the B&B in Kinlochleven at 5pm which meant eight hours and twenty minutes on the track. I had a couple of ten minute breaks and tea on the summit above the Devil’s Staircase. The drop down from there to Kinlochleven was very steep and longer than I expected.
above – Rannoch Moor
above – Glen Coe
above – Glen Coe
And when I finally sat down with a mug of tea at the B&B, “The Big Bang Theory” was on the TV
The first thing to do today is to get back to the path – which is about half a mile away but it is nearly all “up”.
I am completing this post whilst sitting in front of the log fire, in the lounge at The Bridge of Orchy Hotel lounge.
The day did start with a few spots of rain but by midday it was dry but overcast with the tops of low mountains shrouded in cloud.
We crossed the main road at Tyndrum – where we stopped for a tea and sausage roll in the conveniently placed cafe.
Tomorrow is a twenty-one mile day so we are in a hurry to get to Kinlochleven before dark.
It is now about 3.30pm and we are about four miles away from Crainlarich on the old military road – and the path is such that I can write this whilst walking.
The first five miles of the day were some of the most difficult we will have to walk this week. A narrow fractured, undulating path, where you had to watch where you walked. It took us over three hours to cover five miles. It was similar terrain for the end of yesterday and that too slowed down our progress. This afternoon once we reached the military road our pace picked up.
We had some great views this morning over the loch and even found somewhere to get coffee, Beinglas Farm.
Another thing we saw (and smelt) were goats along the side of the loch, and you really could smell them before you saw them!