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Escapism by planning... Connecting Skye and WHL, any advice?

Escapism by planning... Connecting Skye and WHL, any advice?


Postby NathFrost » Tue Apr 21, 2020 2:09 pm

Hey team,

I'd wager a guess and say that I'm not alone in spending my time thinking about and planning what I'll be doing as soon as this lockdown is lifted. I'd just resigned from my job to go travelling/trekking for 6 months when this hit so I'm really living for it.

Part of my plan was to do some long distance hiking and I'm trying to put together a route that connects most of the national parks in the UK but starting up north, in Skye, with the Skye trail. From there the plan was to connect with the West Highlands Way but I haven't been able to find anything established between Broadford and Fort William and having never been up that far North, have no idea where to look.

Does anyone have any suggestions for routes or resources to have a look at connecting the two?

Much appreciated and hope everyone is staying safe.


Nathan
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Re: Escapism by planning... Connecting Skye and WHL, any adv

Postby jmarkb » Tue Apr 21, 2020 3:07 pm

NathFrost wrote:I'd just resigned from my job to go travelling/trekking for 6 months when this hit so I'm really living for it.


That must be gutting - I really feel for you!

NathFrost wrote:Does anyone have any suggestions for routes or resources to have a look at connecting the two?


Either - bus to Armadale, ferry to Mallaig, boat to Inverie, over Mam Meadail to Sourlies bothy and pick up the Cape Wrath Trail Glenfinnan variant https://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/cape-wrath-trail.shtml in reverse to Fort William. Or - walk to Kylerhea, over the ferry (which only normally runs Easter-October), up Glen More to Suardalan bothy, over the Bealach Aoidhdailean to Kinlochhourn and pick up the Cape Wrath Trail there.
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Re: Escapism by planning... Connecting Skye and WHL, any adv

Postby NathFrost » Tue Apr 21, 2020 7:05 pm

It was definitely a tough pill to swallow but I've been told by a few people the mountains will still be there once this is done, so, I'll have to take their word on it :wink:/ (they bloody better be!).

That was super helpful, thank you. I also stumbled across the Long Distance Routes (https://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/long-distance-routes.shtml), which does a great job visualising everything.

I guess the decision then is which variant to use, any recommendations? Just from a small amount of research it looks like the Glenfinnan variant is a little more of a climb (a good thing) where the Great Glen is more low lying?
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Re: Escapism by planning... Connecting Skye and WHL, any adv

Postby jmarkb » Tue Apr 21, 2020 7:27 pm

The Glenfinnan variant is wilder and more scenic - that would be my choice unless the weather was poor.
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Re: Escapism by planning... Connecting Skye and WHL, any adv

Postby Stevekerr188 » Tue Apr 21, 2020 7:36 pm

Another possibility would be to get the bus Portree to Shiel Bridge walk the Affric Kintail way to Drumnadrochit and then down the Great glen way to Fort William. 20 mile days would get you there in 5 1/2 days. Not as grand as Knoydart but a possibility on marked paths.
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Re: Escapism by planning... Connecting Skye and WHL, any adv

Postby Giant Stoneater » Wed Apr 22, 2020 9:06 am

You could reverse this route starting at Rubha Hunish and finishing at Armadale,this is a variation on David Patersons book "A long walk on the Isle of Skye"

http://www.ramblingpete.walkingplaces.co.uk/long/skye/skyeintro.htm

https://lonewalker.net/my-long-distance-walks/skye-trail-2012/

This was my own take on walking Skye.

http://www.scottishhills.com/html/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=13807
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Re: Escapism by planning... Connecting Skye and WHL, any adv

Postby walkingpoles » Wed Apr 22, 2020 11:10 am

You might be a bit disappointed by the WHW after having crossed Skye and Knoydart. It depends what you're looking for. If paths, pubs and people are a good thing, go for it. Or if some easier days at the end are part of the overall planning (resulting in a higher chance of the trip ending like you planned it, even if the weather turns out to be atrocious). If not, you can also consider options heading east or north after Skye, for example along Affric Kintail Way or the CWT. Other options are to include mountain trips in Knoydart instead of walking the WHW. May also depend on your previous experiences. WHW has the advantage of being a rather safe bet. Everything else needs a lot more preparation.

Enjoy
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Re: Escapism by planning... Connecting Skye and WHL, any adv

Postby Caberfeidh » Wed Apr 22, 2020 11:44 am

Have you considered the joys of tunnelling? Some of the more fanatical members of various speleological societies might lend a hand - and a spade.
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