The Great Glen Way – Invergarry to Fort Augustus

Confession – I didn’t take a single photo on this walk so I have nothing to illustrate this post with, oops!

This is a nice straightforward walk, we did it on a sunny September day, walking at a reasonable pace as we had a bus to catch at the end of the walk.

Our starting point was the bus stop at the Invergarry Hotel, backtracking slightly along the A87 beyond some holiday houses there’s a signposted footpath up into the trees which eventually leads onto a forest track, this is waymarked and is part of the Invergarry Link to the Great Glen Way. Follow the track east for a while, then go onto a smaller path which more or less tracks the A82 to Bridge of Oich.

At Bridge of Oich turn down onto the Caledonian Canal (don’t cross the swing bridge). Once you are beyond the Aberchadler spillway between the canal and the River Oich where you might need to paddle it’s a lovely easy walk on the tow path all the way to Fort Augustus. This is part of the Laggan Locks to Fort Augustus section of the Great Glen Way.

We stopped for lunch at a picnic bench at the first lock; at the next lock we sat and watched a cruiser go through, it was rather weird to see the boat sink as the water level went down.

Our walk ended in the centre of Fort Augustus, we had a bus to catch so didn’t hang around but there are shops, places to eat and a canal visitor centre here if you have more time.

Our local bus took us to Invermoriston where we had some time to wait for our connection. we wandered down to river to look at the falls and the Thomas Telford bridge and St Columba’s Well. The Invermoriston Hotel is a nice place to wait with a beer as well.

We mainly traveled on CityLink buses and as I said in my last post it is well worth booking a seat on these buses to make sure that you do get on, the buses are not very frequent and you could be left at the roadside somewhere quite remote if the bus is full.

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Skye – Scorrybreac walk

Last week we had a few days in the Highlands, we based ourselves in Dornie at our favourite B&B and had the intention of climbing some mountains. Sadly on 2 of the days the weather was wet and cloud was low so we settled for lower levels walks instead.

On day 1 of our holiday we headed to Skye in search of slightly less rain, and chose a walk from Isle of Skye: 40 Coast and Country Walks. Starting at Portree we did the Scorrybreac circuit in some rain and lots of wind (waterproof trousers were needed).

The walk is fairly straightforward and there’s guidance here https://www.isleofskye.com/skye-guide/top-ten-skye-walks/scorrybreac although it took us a lot longer than the 45 minutes suggested, more like 2 hours when we included a lunch break and some photo stops.

Despite the rain the cloud lifted at times for some nice views

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Portree

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View from our lunch spot at Pam’s View

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View from our lunch spot at Pam’s View

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The Quiraing in the distance

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Zoomed in on the Quiraing

We travelled to Skye by CityLink buses, booking a seat is advised as the buses get very busy.

#30DaysWild Day 16 – Grantchester

After two lovely days exploring Cambridge we decided that we needed to escape the crowds and explore the wider area. On the advice of a local we decided to walk along the River Cam to Grantchester (thanks Celine, it was lovely).

We had spent the morning at the Polar Museum so our walk started at The Fen Causeway and then down to Sheep’s Green and Lammas Land where we joined the path along the Cam. First through woods, them some houses and onto Grantchester Meadows

Despite families picknicking and students cycling past we did spot some wildlife

On reaching Grantchester we headed for the Orchard Tea Garden for tea and cake under the trees, delicious.

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Mr Lmrlib had spotted something intriguing on the Ordnance Survey map, a travelling telescope, so of course we had to continue our walk to find out what it is. I’m not really any the wiser except it’s something to do with the university and involves big dishes!

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I did enjoy walking through the fields though, lots of wildflowers and butterflies

On our return journey it was good to see others out enjoying the river

Whitby and the North York Moors – part 2

Walk 2 – Levisham and the Hole of Horcum
We don’t have a car so plan our walks around public transport, in this case we chose to use the North York Moors Railway to get to the start of our walk, combining a fun trip on a steam train with our walk.

We took the steam train from Whitby to Levisham

From Levisham station it was a short, steep climb up onto the moor and then a nice easy walk across the moorland, there were lots of birds to spot (wheatear,  skylark,  windchat and curlew) and passed an Iron Age dyke

The moorland part of the walk took us to the rim of the Hole of Horcum. There are good views from here over to Fylingdale and into the Hole.

The next stage of the walk is down into the Hole of Horcum and through the valley

we then climbed back up onto the moor and eventually rejoined the path down to Levisham station where we watched a train going in the other direction as we waited for our own steam train back to Whitby

Walk 3 – Roseberry Topping
For this walk we took the Northern Rail train service to Kildale. From the station we walked through the hamlet and then uphill through a farm where we met a very friendly sheep and her lamb

we then got onto the Cleveland Way, going uphill through woodland to the Captain Cook monument

After a lunch stop at the monument we headed down the other side of the hill still keeping on the Cleveland Way, this took us right down to the car park and then back up onto the moor. An easy walk across the moor took us to the descent towards Roseberry Topping

Thankfully it’s a fairly short climb back up the other side to get to the top. It was a bit hazy so so my photos from the top were’t great, you’ll need to take my word that the views are good.

We took a different route down, heading towards Great Ayton for the train back to Whitby.

 

And this is where the day very nearly ended badly! We diverted slightly from our planned route and ended up in the most beautiful bluebell filled wood, the scent was glorious and we dawdled too long taking photos

The detour and the dawdling meant that we were very late for our train and must have made an amusing sight running through the village in full hiking gear, walking poles, cameras and all. Thank goodness for the young men who pulled over and gave us a lift, we made the last train back to Whitby by 2 minutes.

A great last day (with timekeeping and map reading lessons for me for our next walk!)

Whitby and the North York Moors – part 1

A couple of weeks ago we rented a tiny cottage in the centre of Whitby for a spring holiday, neither of us had been there before so there was lots to explore and discover.

Sadly the weather for the first couple of days was unseasonably cold for May but we wrapped up in our thermals and winter woolies and explored the town.

Watching the wild sea kept us amused for ages!

Thankfully the weather improved for the remainder of the week so we were able to get out and about into the surrounding countryside.

Walk 1 – Whitby to Robin Hood’s Bay along the cliffs
This is an interesting walk along the cliff path, we were fascinated by how visible the coastal erosion is –

The sun came out as we walked so we were glad to reach Robin Hood’s Bay for a cooling drink before exploring the village
We caught a bus back to Whitby so we’d get back in time for dinner, Whitby restaurants seem to close abnormally early!

And Whitby looked rather lovely as the sun set