Last part of Speyside Way, wrapped up with cake at both ends

Route: Kincraig to Newtonmore

Date walked: 08/10/2020

Distance: 21km

So now for our final part of the Speyside Way - Kincraig to Newtonmore.

On 10th September we walked from Kincraig to the Uath Lochans as an out and back and had coffee and carrot cake once we returned to the start point at Kincraig post office, which doubles as a coffee shop. It was good to see this place open again and providing a thriving wee hub for the local community. We met Paul there and chatted about the difficulties for outdoor centres that had been closed since March and are unable to take group bookings even into 2021, and how damaging it is to mental health to have this facility withdrawn nationwide. Paul is based at the outdoor centre at Alltnacriche and the previous day they had received word from the Scottish government there would be no financial help available. (This may have changed now).

Kincraig coffee shop

We followed the WH directions and the SSW signs and were relieved not to find the multitude of chain gates we had to push through between Ballindalloch and Grantown. This was an altogether more civilised section with an excellent surface for cycling, not many gates and good views.

We crossed the bridge over the outflow of the Spey from Loch Insh.

Zoomed south on Loch Insh to what looks like the shape of Meall Chuaich

We nipped up the path to the church by the lochside. For churches with scenic locations this one must be up there.

Insh Church

About 30 years ago when our kids were young we were on holiday up north and came to this church as we were passing through. After the service and with a journey ahead I asked an old lady where the toilets were. She said "Oh dearie we have no toilets, you just go behind a gravestone." Even 30 years ago you will be relieved to hear we didn't!

Watersports centre

Shinty pitch and gate you turn left to go through

Maybe a project for someone?

One of the Uath lochans

As we turned back to retrace our steps to Kincraig we passed two lads who looked like they were attacking a tree with a branch. Realising how odd it must look they explained their drone was stuck high up a pine and they were trying to knock it down with a branch they found lying on the ground. We waited long enough to see they got it down, though don't know if it survived the fall.

On 8th October we were back on a brighter day than a month earlier, with the autumn colours developing nicely. This time we started at Inshriach.

Wide path through the pines of Inshriach

The detour up Farleitter Crag doesn't add much to the overall distance and is worth doing for the view over the lochans.

On the way up

Uath lochans



Feshie hills

Back on track

View west

Fly agaric mushroom often found in birch woods and said to be hallucinogenic

Monadhliadh hills ahead

Dog checking out the only waterlogged part we found on the route

I like this photo of Moira's

Dark clouds gathering

But blue sky here

River Tromie

Carved out rock from rush of many waters






We didn't go to the bird hide at the Insh Marshes Nature Reserve as it looked like rain so we didn't want to delay.

Insh marshes from bird hide (on a previous visit)

Ruthven barracks in a strange light

At this point the waterproofs went on as the dark sky opened and for the next half hour we walked in rain.

River Spey in the rain

When we reached Kingussie we thought about turning right to find shelter from the rain along with a coffee but decided to keep going and get the job done. Half way between Kingussie and Newtonmore we met a straggling crocodile of secondary school kids who were very taken with the dog. They said due to covid rules they couldn't do PE so went out for walks instead and sure enough two masked adults appeared, PE staff escorting their class on what Moira and I as ex teachers thought was a fairly soft option, compared to some of the complications the pandemic has thrown at education in 2020!

Autumn colours on Newtonmore main street

We headed straight for the Wild Flour cafe to celebrate our completion of the Speyside Way.

Camera lens fogged up in warmth of cafe... and we shared that piece of cake

We may come back to the Tomintoul loop another time but as far as following the Spey River from the sea to as far inland as the Way currently goes, we have done it!

A week later four of my grandsons and their parents spent a fabulous day canoeing on the Spey near Kincraig. So as a tribute to this beautiful river I'll finish on that day.

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Comments: 8

When we battled the wind and time stood still

Attachment(s) Munros: Sgorr Dhearg (Beinn a'Bheithir), Sgorr Dhonuill (Beinn a'Bheithir)
Date walked: 26/09/2020
Distance: 12.5km
Comments: 3
Views: 542

Off to Fisherfield to look for Donnie

Attachment(s) Munros: Sgurr Ban
Date walked: 31/08/2020
Distance: 30km
Comments: 9
Views: 1145

Who better to meet on the Pass of the Cattle?

Attachment(s) Corbetts: Sgurr a' Chaorachain
Date walked: 24/08/2020
Distance: 7km
Comments: 8
Views: 658

It's the little ones that catch you out!

Attachment(s) Grahams: Creag Liath
Date walked: 15/08/2020
Distance: 11.5km
Comments: 11
Views: 860

From all we had read not as bad as expected

Attachment(s) Date walked: 10/08/2020
Distance: 23km
Comments: 4
Views: 468

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Attachment(s) Date walked: 31/07/2020
Distance: 19.5km
Views: 328

1, 2

Which way would you choose to reach Mount Keen?

Attachment(s) Munros: Mount Keen
Date walked: 22/07/2020
Distance: 30km
Comments: 19
Views: 1310

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Attachment(s) Corbetts: Creag Rainich
Date walked: 08/07/2020
Distance: 17km
Comments: 6
Views: 938

1, 2

Pup's long awaited first big hill

Attachment(s) Corbetts: Carn na Saobhaidhe
Date walked: 03/07/2020
Distance: 29.5km
Comments: 18
Views: 1665


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