Hiking in the Highlands

Isn’t alliteration amazing.

Anyway, after our late night escapades in Galloway, we were glad to be out on the open road and on our way to the good old fashioned great outdoors. My Mum loves waterfalls, so we decided our next stop on the trip would be Glen Nevis, to walk up to Steall Falls.

It takes roughly 4 hours to drive up to Glen Nevis from Galloway, and the scenery is breath taking – we drove through Glen Coe and it’s indescribable; so I’ll let a Google Photo Sphere do the talking.

Wasn’t that amazing?

On the day we were walking, there was a race going on up Ben Nevis (which we found out about upon reaching the visitor centre!) and it was incredibly busy. Luckily, this did mean most of the people were concentrated in that area, and not by the falls, so the walk itself was quite clear. We only met a few other people on the walk, one of which was wearing Ugg Boots and seemed quite confused about how hard it was. So that was fun to watch.

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It takes a few hours to walk up to the falls from the car park, and as I had a dodgy knee at the time, that was the perfect length. It’s not too difficult, there are a few hairy moments where it’s a bit rocky and slippery but all in all it’s a nice walk though, ending in a waterfall and a hell of a lot of cows. If you’re feeling dangerous, there’s even a wire bridge to risk your life on. It’s also very easy to follow – you literally just follow the path from bottom to top. If you manage to stray from it, you’ve probably fallen down or walked along with your eyes shut.

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The car park is a little bit difficult to find at first, but if you look for the Visitor Centre you’re on the right road – just carry on and keep driving. Then keep driving some more. You’re nearly there at this point. Just a few more windy roads and then there’s nowhere else to go, so you’ve made it.

You can always pop in to the Visitor Centre and they’ll point down the same road you just came off of for you. Actually they’re very lovely in there, so you could always just pop in for a chat. They even sell t shirts and key rings etc that say something along the lines of ‘I Conquered Ben Nevis’, so if you don’t want to go all the way up the mountain, you can convince your friends back home that you did.

Anyway, this wasn’t our final stop for the day. You know places to be, people to see… Miles to make up. We were headed for Invergarry, where we stayed at the Castle Hotel. It’s called the castle hotel because on the grounds of the hotel there once stood a castle. Well, it’s still there but it’s a bit dilapidated and sealed off.

We had a bit of trouble finding it. That may just have been my directions though. We somehow managed to go across a bridge, realise we’d gone the wrong way, turn around and get back to the bridge just as a boat needed to go underneath, so the whole bridge rotated. And we sat and watched. All the time knowing we could have been at the hotel by then. Just our luck. Anyway we made it there in the end.

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It’s a nice hotel; they have a beautiful loch there, and I had a bath in my room and a tiny chair, and they do a four course meal too. It could probably do with a bit of renovation but does the trick for one night. I don’t think I could afford to stay more than one night, to be fair. If you’re on a budget it’s probably better to stay somewhere else.

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So that was day 2. And we’d had a second bridge incident. With Norway, it’s tunnels. With Croatia, it’s steps. Seemingly with Scotland, it was bridges.

To see if our bridge streak continued on Day 3, tune in again tomorrow, when we make our way up to the epic Isle of Skye.

You have to cross a bridge to get there. But we’ll cross that when we come to it.

Abi

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@abipageaustin

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