walkhighlands

This forum is for general discussion about walking and scrambling... If writing a report or sharing your experiences from a route, please use the other boards.

WHW Wild Camping Spots

WHW Wild Camping Spots


Postby fhaggis » Wed Mar 29, 2017 12:05 am

Route description: West Highland Way

Date walked: 29/03/2017

Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

Hi Im hoping people can give me some advice about wild camping spots on the WHW?

i did it in 5 days a few years ago and ended up using some campsites, which i don,t want to or afford to do this time.

I will carry my own stuff and i will hope to do it in the 5 days again, Last time i finished ear;y on the 5th day but wont be in as such a rush this time and might take 6 days.

basically looking for advise on where to camp each day, which will give me something to aim at. the problem is im not very good at "stopping" and will keep going with daylight etc and i will probably end up at the same spots (campsites) as last time.

day 1 is the biggest worry with the camping ban, i camped at Mallarky bay (spelling?) the last time and was pretty tired by then, is there any other options around there? maybe conic hill?

Day 2 i camped outside the drovers (i arrived in the dark, was end or March). best option to camp at the end of the loch?

Day 3, easy wild camp at Bridge or Orchy

Day 4 i didn't get into Kinlochleven till about 8 last time and being a village i cant remember where else would be suitable? any suggestions?

any suggestions is much appreciated!
fhaggis
Walker
 
Posts: 4
Munros:13   Corbetts:1
Grahams:1   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:1
Wainwrights:1   
Joined: May 16, 2014

Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby Marty_JG » Wed Mar 29, 2017 4:25 pm

If you've already bagged it... Why not skip Lomond, start at Ardlui or Tyndrum, and continue on a bit, perhaps Nevis, and a bit further along the road?

That way you'll avoid any wildcamping restriction nonsense.
User avatar
Marty_JG
Backpacker
 
Posts: 204
Munros:1   
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: Sep 12, 2016
Location: Glasgow

Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby nick70 » Thu Feb 08, 2018 9:42 pm

Hi Fhaggis, i see your post is almost a year old now so don't know if you have down walk or not.

I don't know if you have the Harveys route map or not, but this actually details where some wild camp areas are, although i didn't realise this until after i completed walk.

For day 1 there is a spot right at edge of Garadbhan Forest just before you leave forest and start ascent over Conic Hill.

For your second day I am sure you camp by the loch side of Lomond by Rowchoish Bothy, im quite sure by this point you have exited the exclusion zone. If you are pushing on up to Drovers on Beinglas campsite then there is also Doune Bothy about 2-3 miles before this.

At Bridge of Orchy there is a wild camp area just over bridge at river, you can also carry on just by Inverornan and again there is a bridge with a wild camp area either side of it.

At Kingshouse they now have a wild camp area behind the restaurant/bar in the pine forest and again by the river. Kinlochleven Im not really sure about.

Hope you find this helpful.

Nick
nick70
Walker
 
Posts: 102
Munros:2   
Sub 2000:2   
Joined: Apr 9, 2017
Location: East Kilbride

Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby toby-boby » Mon Mar 19, 2018 2:01 pm

Hi, I am flying into the UK in three weeks and heading north to do the WHW also with wild camping, if possible.
I will do it in 7 or 8 days (with Buachaille Etive Mor hike).

Is the spot right at edge of Garadbhan Forest not in the section which it is forbidden to camp (camping ban on East Loch Lomond)? Option to camp at Rowardennan?

Any other ideas highly appreciated.
toby-boby
Backpacker
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Mar 19, 2018

Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby nick70 » Mon Mar 19, 2018 4:23 pm

Hi Toby Boby, it is a difficult one to answer with great clarity.

Yes the exclusion zone is from Drymen to Ptarmigan Lodge, and yes Garadbhan Forest is north of Drymen. I camped out in Garadbhan Forest last year and I was there again this Saturday. I really don't see any problems with camping there, it is marked on the Harvey's map of WHW as a wild camp area. There is also another wild camp area just north of Rowardennan.

There is also the option of getting permits. If you know where you are going to be camping you can apply for those, I think they cost £3. If you are intending to camp in the exclusion zone it may be worth your while to get these and give yourself that ease of mind. The link below will provide more information on that.

http://www.lochlomond-trossachs.org/things-to-do/camping/go-wild/

I hope you thoroughly enjoy your walk.
nick70
Walker
 
Posts: 102
Munros:2   
Sub 2000:2   
Joined: Apr 9, 2017
Location: East Kilbride


Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby toby-boby » Mon Mar 19, 2018 7:05 pm

Thank you for your helpful answer.

So I will stay there if possible. So far I don't have Harvey's map of the WHW. Are those wild camping spots also marked on a GPS map (gpx)?

Unfortunately I don't know where I will camp, this is way I do wild camping, a don't plan every mile on the track. Its al depending on the weather and my shape. Maybe I also do a side walk and so i can't say where I will staying the next night. Otherwise I would deferentially pay those 3£.

And to buy food on the way, is it right, there isn't a shop in the Loch Lomond section? So from Balmaha to Tyndrum isn't a shop on the way, just a small shop at the Beinglas Campsite or if I go of the track down to Crianlarich?
toby-boby
Backpacker
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Mar 19, 2018

Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby nick70 » Mon Mar 19, 2018 8:05 pm

If you take the train to Milngavie to start your walk, as you leave station and you head through the underpass if you look left you will see a Tescos. Your next shop won't be until Drymen, that's if you decide to head into Drymen or not, it's not that big a deviation of trail.
At Balmaha you have the Oak Tree pub, and I think there is a shop next door that sells ice cream. I'm not sure it sells anything else. Along this stretch you have a couple of official camp sites. Millarochy is your first one and then Cashel. Both of these camp sites have shops in them and I'm sure you could re-stock there even if you choose not to stay on the camp site.
Your next shop after this will be the shop at Beinglas Farm camp site. There is also Inversnaid Hotel just a few miles north of Rowardennan, no shop as such but you can stop in there for a coffee or a bite to eat.
After Beinglas Farm your next opportunity of a shop would be at Crianlarich, which again is slightly off the trail. Your next shop after this would be at Tyndrum. Bridge of Orchy has a Hotel, where again you could nip in for a juice, coffee or a bite to eat.
Kinlochleven will your next (and final) opportunity of a shop before you get to Fort William.

As regards your question about the wild camping spots being marked on GPS maps, I'm afraid I can't answer that. I have an inkling that they won't be however.

I hope this helps.

Nick
nick70
Walker
 
Posts: 102
Munros:2   
Sub 2000:2   
Joined: Apr 9, 2017
Location: East Kilbride

Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby toby-boby » Mon Mar 19, 2018 9:32 pm

Thank you for the detailed explanation!
If I pass a pub during the day, Ill definitely will go for a pint and some tasty food. But at least for the night, I will make my packed or restocked food over the gas or fire. But nice to hear, that I don't have to carry the whole food for six or seven days :wink:
toby-boby
Backpacker
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Mar 19, 2018

Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby abbruce » Tue Mar 20, 2018 1:19 pm

Put this together for friends that did WHW last year. Hope it helps

Milngavie – Drymen
Beech Tree inn, Dumgoyne – decent pub serving food & snacks. Service isn’t great
Drymen – Rowardenan
When the path flattens at the top of Conic Hill, take the short path on the left to go to the top. Only a very short way up to get wonderful views down the small islands on Loch Lomond that make up the start of the Highland Boundary Fault.
Balmaha has a good pub (Oak Tree Inn) & a very good coffee shop (Mocha) a couple of doors up. Both are very good, wi-fi is better in the coffee shop.
Rowerdenan Hotel has a decent bar serving food.
Rowerdenan – Inverarnan
Inversnaid Hotel – Walkers welcome in the bar. Serves good soup & sandwiches, bar meals etc. Expect the bar to be full of OAP’s from a coach trip, as that’s the hotels main business.
Once you leave the shore of Loch Lomond & towards the end of your day, you’ll go up the side of a small hill. At the top, there’s a large metal gate on your left. Well worth going over/through this to get an unrestricted view right down Loch Lomond.
You’ll pass Bienglas Farm, a campsite with a small shop & bar. The Drovers is a small detour & situated on the main A82. Well worth going down as food is excellent, as is the craic.
Inverarnan to Tyndrum
Once you go through the forest & cross the main road, you go across flat farmland & reach Auchertyre Farm which has a small shop serving coffee & basic home bake type food. There are a few seats outside as well as WC’s. Only around an hour from Tyndrum.
Tyndrum has the Green Welly Shop for any supplies you need. The garage shop is well stocked also. Tyndrum Inn is a good pub selling food, the chippy (Real Food Café) is also very good.
Tyndrum – Kingshouse
Bridge of Orchy is around 6 miles away & has a decent bar in the hotel. After around another hour you’ll reach Inveroran Hotel which has a small bar selling very good soup & sandwiches. As you come down the hill to Inveroran, look for a large house on the other side of the loch. This was the home of the Flemings & is the house that was rebuilt in film studios for the Bond film Skyfall.
At the end of Rannoch Moor, take the short detour to Glencoe Mountain ski centre which has an excellent café.
Kingshouse – Kinlochleven
There’s nowhere to stop for food at all, but it’s a short day. When you arrive in Kinlochleven, you pass the Ice Factor which has a café. The Tailrace Inn pub is across the road, but its average at best. The McDonald Hotel at the far end of the village is excellent for food.
Kinlochleven to Ft William Again, nowhere to stop for food, but Kinlochleven has a Co-op, so buy from here before setting off. Grog & Gruel is the best pub in Ft William & only around 300 yards back from the end of the WHW. Their pizzas are brilliant.
abbruce
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 158
Munros:201   Corbetts:22
Grahams:2   
Sub 2000:5   Hewitts:38
Wainwrights:68   
Joined: Aug 17, 2012
Location: Aberdeen

Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby toby-boby » Fri Mar 23, 2018 4:38 pm

Thank you a lot for the good description. Very useful.

Now i am just hopping, that there isn't too much snow around in three weeks when I will start. And it is not yet midges season?
toby-boby
Backpacker
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Mar 19, 2018

Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby nick70 » Sun Mar 25, 2018 9:49 pm

Toby, for that time of year you will be absolutely fine regarding the midges. They shouldn't be out then. I done walk last year starting mid April and I never encountered any. You should also be fine with the snow, unless we have any more fresh snow between now and your walk starting, but this would only really affect higher areas. Fingers crossed you will be fine on both counts.

I hope you really enjoy your walk, it truly is stunning.

ATB

Nick
nick70
Walker
 
Posts: 102
Munros:2   
Sub 2000:2   
Joined: Apr 9, 2017
Location: East Kilbride

Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby Border Reiver » Mon Mar 26, 2018 9:50 am

Some people seem to misunderstand the term "wild camping". Wild camping is not camping by your car on the road side or camping with lots of other tents by a loch side, cutting down trees and leaving litter. These things are what the laws are trying to stop. Anyone who puts in the effort to walk a decent distance off the way and pitch a single tent where it won't be seen, stay a night and leave without leaving any trace - that's wild camping, and I'd be willing to bet that you will not be seen or chased away.
User avatar
Border Reiver
Wanderer
 
Posts: 1308
Munros:202   Corbetts:7
Grahams:3   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:2   Hewitts:61
Wainwrights:68   
Joined: Feb 18, 2011
Location: North East England

Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby nick70 » Mon Mar 26, 2018 12:56 pm

Border Reiver. I am not quite sure how to take your comment or what to make of it.

I am more than fully aware of what 'wild camping' is in its truest sense. I am just trying to offer advice and guidance for those that seek it. If you are not happy with me referencing designated 'wild camp' areas on a Harveys map then I suggest you take this up with them.

Also many people that seek advice/guidance about WHW are new to it and as yet not familiar with it (Toby I believe is from Switzerland) so to advise them to go find a spot by walking a decent distance off the way is not, in my opinion, prudent or safe to do so.

Your comment regarding cutting down trees and leaving litter I agree with 100%. I find these acts totally reprehensible. However I do not take kindly to your reference to it and almost, in some way, that I, or anyone else on this forum was advocating such measures.
nick70
Walker
 
Posts: 102
Munros:2   
Sub 2000:2   
Joined: Apr 9, 2017
Location: East Kilbride

Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby Border Reiver » Mon Mar 26, 2018 3:10 pm

nick70 wrote:Border Reiver. I am not quite sure how to take your comment or what to make of it.

I am more than fully aware of what 'wild camping' is in its truest sense. I am just trying to offer advice and guidance for those that seek it. If you are not happy with me referencing designated 'wild camp' areas on a Harveys map then I suggest you take this up with them.

Also many people that seek advice/guidance about WHW are new to it and as yet not familiar with it (Toby I believe is from Switzerland) so to advise them to go find a spot by walking a decent distance off the way is not, in my opinion, prudent or safe to do so.

Your comment regarding cutting down trees and leaving litter I agree with 100%. I find these acts totally reprehensible. However I do not take kindly to your reference to it and almost, in some way, that I, or anyone else on this forum was advocating such measures.

I am struggling to find out what I've said in my post that would cause so much extreme offence to you, especially when I hadn't even read your own post. I merely offered the OP some advice on possible camping spots that would serve their purpose and not attract attention. I certainly don't think that pitching a tent hidden among trees 100m or so from a trail to be dangerous.
I have now read your post and your advice is good. It doesn't match with mine, but then we are not compelled to agree on everything posted, there will always be varying opinions and advice, from which the OP will make a decision. Am I offended by your post? Not a bit, there's more important things in life.
User avatar
Border Reiver
Wanderer
 
Posts: 1308
Munros:202   Corbetts:7
Grahams:3   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:2   Hewitts:61
Wainwrights:68   
Joined: Feb 18, 2011
Location: North East England

Re: WHW Wild Camping Spots

Postby Funsized Earthling » Fri Jun 22, 2018 12:18 pm

nick70 wrote:Hi Fhaggis, i see your post is almost a year old now so don't know if you have down walk or not.

I don't know if you have the Harveys route map or not, but this actually details where some wild camp areas are, although i didn't realise this until after i completed walk.

For day 1 there is a spot right at edge of Garadbhan Forest just before you leave forest and start ascent over Conic Hill.

For your second day I am sure you camp by the loch side of Lomond by Rowchoish Bothy, im quite sure by this point you have exited the exclusion zone. If you are pushing on up to Drovers on Beinglas campsite then there is also Doune Bothy about 2-3 miles before this.

At Bridge of Orchy there is a wild camp area just over bridge at river, you can also carry on just by Inverornan and again there is a bridge with a wild camp area either side of it.

At Kingshouse they now have a wild camp area behind the restaurant/bar in the pine forest and again by the river. Kinlochleven Im not really sure about.

Hope you find this helpful.

Nick


Hi Nick, please could you tell me what the legend is for Wild Camping spots on the Harvey map? Is it the one that says " Camping (no facilities)?" Would really appreciate your help.
User avatar
Funsized Earthling
Walker
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Jun 17, 2018

Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
Next



Return to General discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Gareth Harper, jmarkb and 17 guests