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Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted


Postby tian » Wed Feb 13, 2019 10:10 pm

Hi Folks. My wife and me go hiking for a week or two in summer every year. In the past years we visited Norway, Sweden and Finland quite often and enjoyed the great nature and loneliness there.
For this year we thought about going to Scotland, (if UK will still allow us to enter after Brexit). I read some Walk Reports about the area around Inverness, but most pictures I saw showed wide walking paths and low mountains, nothing we are looking for. Are there areas reachable by public transportation from a airport, where we could hike for about 7 days, with higher mountains surrounding and only small or none existent paths? We usually don't climb up mountain tops, but enjoy to hike through valleys or climb over passes.

We would be there first week of august, how dangerous would it be to hike there as hunting season will start that time?

Tian
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby Pastychomper » Thu Feb 14, 2019 2:08 pm

Thanks to deer stalking there are a number of 4x4 tracks even in the more remote areas, but of course there's nothing to say you have to follow them - you can pick good trackless or near-trackless routes in most places.

You are unlikely to get shot at but will need to avoid deer stalkers. I believe the usual method is to plan more than one route for each day, find out which estate you'd be walking across, then contact them the day before to find out which areas (if any) you need to avoid. All the hunting estates should be willing to help, but as deer are mobile they don't tend to know far in advance where stalking will take place on a given day. Personally I do most of my big walks out of season (my location makes it easy to do), but from what I've read on here most estates seem to be willing to advise walkers who take the trouble to check in advance.

Public transport will take you to a lot of promising areas but not quite everywhere. From Inverness airport there's a bus to Inverness itself, then you can get trains north, south, or west (via Dingwall) to mountainous areas.
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby Phil the Hill » Thu Feb 14, 2019 2:13 pm

The Cairngorms would be your best bet. You can get a train to Aviemore. Lots of route suggestions on this site.

Midges will be an issue in August, but if you normally walk in Scandinavia maybe you are used to that.

You should be OK to avoid deer stalking in the main Cairngorms. Others can probably advise better than me, as I avoid August.
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby NickyRannoch » Thu Feb 14, 2019 2:39 pm

Avoiding land rover tracks in Scotland would take a real concerted effort and often means keeping to high ground.

I think the best option would be to take a train to Mallaig (presuming you are flying to Edinburgh or Glasgow, if you fly to Inverness get a train to Kyle of Lochalsh) or one of the stations just before and to try and end up in Blair Atholl to get a train back.

You will still have to cross main roads or through a village at some points in the journey though.
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby Sgurr » Thu Feb 14, 2019 4:56 pm

The O/S have just revealed the longest trackless walk you can do in the UK without hitting a road. It is not inherently very fascinating, but the Cairngorms are always good and you could add a few hills to north or south to take up your extra days.. I don't think anyone has yet done it, but you can be sure that someone out there is either doing it, or planning to do it.

https://www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/blog/2019/01/gbs-longest-linear-walk-without-crossing-a-road/
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby nigheandonn » Thu Feb 14, 2019 5:15 pm

You might get some inspiration from looking at some of the blogs people have written (mostly elsewhere) about the TGO Challenge - they tend to hit a town every few days to restock, but can get quite wild in between.
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby tian » Thu Feb 14, 2019 6:14 pm

Thank you! Just to clarify, it don't has to be a completely trackless area, we are fine with walking on marked trails too, but a path that is wider than three or four footsteps is nothing we are looking for to follow for a week :wink:
We haven't booked our flights now, so we could fly to any airport in scotland.

This type of trail is perfect:

Image

This not:

Image

Midges are often a problem in scandinavia too, but we know how to protect ourself and also own head nets :wink:
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby mynthdd2 » Thu Feb 14, 2019 7:57 pm

Knoydart? Glen Affric?
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby bydand_loon » Thu Feb 14, 2019 8:23 pm

Cape Wrath section from Glenfinnan or Mallaig to Kinlochewe, Ullapool or Oykel Bridge
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby al78 » Thu Feb 14, 2019 11:58 pm

Blair Atholl to Aviemore via all munros en-route.

The heart of the Cairngorms. Start in Braemar, hike up Ben Avon and Beinn a Bhuird, turn west and keep as high as possible. You will eventually reach the mountains around Loch A'an, from there you can head north, west or south to bag more Munros, or there are lower level walks through the glens if you prefer.

The Monadhliath mountains, very few tracks, or even paths. If you head NW from Aviemore you will go over part of the vast upland plateau and down into Strathdearn (there is a small dead-end road in that glen). From there you are a long way from anywhere, whichever direction you head out of the glen you are hiking over heathery, largely pathless upland plateau.

Dalwhinnie to Fort William. Yuo can either take the low route through the glens which may largely be too pathed for your liking, or leabe the glen and head up over Ben Alder, past Corrour station, then either follow glen Nevis to Fort William or take one of the hardcore parallel routes over the Lochaber peaks (finishing on Ben Nevis), or the full Mammores ridge.

Fort William to Inverie via Glenfinnan, not sure how good the paths in the glens are, if there even are any. From Inverie you can continue heading in a general northerly direction using the path along Loch Hourn, then at Kinloch Hourn turn north and there is a side glen and pass which eventually will bring you to glen Shiel. You don't have to walk down glen Shiel itself with the main road, you can make use of a parallel glen and high pass and go over the munros near The Saddle, you can then join glen Sheil near Sheil Bridge. From there you could just keep going north and north east following glens and passes, you will pass the Falls of Glomach, and end up in Torridon eventually. I think this route is pretty much part of the Cape Wrath trail (it is not a marked way on the ground, large sections of it you have to find a route yourself).
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby al78 » Fri Feb 15, 2019 12:06 am

One thing I will add is that if you really plan to do pathless routes, be prepared to have a sense of humour before you go. Some routes through glens can be very slow going and hard work, due to a combination of rough ground, thick, lumpy vegetation, and boggy ground over which you will put your foot in the wrong place at least once and go down to your thigh. When you pull your now soaking wet black leg out of the mire, make sure you are still wearing your boot.
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby prog99 » Fri Feb 15, 2019 12:13 am

Glen walking or sticking to well used paths is rarely an issue in the stalking season especially in August. Its always worth a call to the estate to check, they generally are very approachable.
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby NickyRannoch » Fri Feb 15, 2019 1:00 am

[quote="al78"

The Monadhliath mountains, very few tracks, or even paths. .[/quote]

Is that so? :shock:
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby Gundram » Thu Feb 21, 2019 9:28 pm

The west coast of the Isle of Jura is a great 4-7 days walk, depending on how fast and far south you want to go.
And you can include the Paps if you are looking for higher mountains.
3 excellent bothies and some fine camping spots along the way.
A friend and I did this hike last year and it was the trip of our life!
For infos visit Peter Edwards blog (writesofway). He also wrote a very good guide book about Jura.
Highly recommended
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Re: Almost trackless 7 day summer hike suggestions wanted

Postby al78 » Fri Feb 22, 2019 9:54 am

NickyRannoch wrote:[quote="al78"

The Monadhliath mountains, very few tracks, or even paths. .


Is that so? :shock:[/quote]

I may have overstated my case there, there are quite a few paths on the edge, but going into the heart of the plateau the paths/tracks drop off significantly, and it is possible to wander around the interior plateau hardly touching a track.
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