Fun times on the west highland way

The West Highland Way is a Long Distance Footpath running from Milngavie to Fort William. This trail has been on my list for a while, and as its close to home, and I have a spare week, now is the time. Of course, at 96 miles, its not really that long, and would normally take me around 4 to five days to complete. As I need to get back in shape for some peak bagging in the Himalayas, I decided to add some side trips.

The Plan

Day 1

Leave Milngavie following the west highland way for about 20 miles with seven days food. Aim to camp at the campground at Millarochy or in some woodland nearby.

Day 2

Leave Millarochy and take a side trip to climb Ben Lomond, camp nearby Inversnaid.

Day 3

Leave the West Highland way at Bein Glas farm, climb Beinn Chabhair, An Caisteal, Beinn a’ Chroin , Glas Tulaichean and Cruach Ardrain before sleeping in woods near Inverlochlarig

Day 4

Leaving Inverlochlarig and climbing Stob Binnein and Ben More, before descending into Crainlarich for lunch. Post lunch regain the West Highland way towards Tyndrum and turn left towards Cononish, then ascend regain WHW, Ascend Ben Dubhchraig, and camp somewhere nearby.

Day 5

Climb Ben Oss, return to Tyndrum for lunch and a resupply before following the West Highland Way as far as Gleann Achadh-innis Chailean, follow the Glean before climbing Beinn Mhanach before finding a suitable camp spot.

Day 6

Continue on to the summits of Beinn Achaladair, Beinn a Chreachain, Beinn an Dothaidh, Bein Dorain, and return to Bridge of Orchy, Camp on shore of Loch Tulla.

Day 7

Leave Loch Tulla, climbing Meall a’ Bhuiridh, Creise and camp in Kinlochmore, resupplying as required.

Day 8

Leave Kinlochmore, heading east and attain the ridge to the peaks of Sgurr Eilde Mor, Binnein Beag, Binnein Mor, Na Gruagaichean, Stob Coire a’ Chairn, An Gearanach, Am Bodach, Sgurr a Mhaim, Stob Ban, Mullach Nan Coirean camping a few miles out of Fort William

Day 9

Arrive in Fort William, find accomodation, food, shower and resupply.

This gives me the flexibility to skip sections due to bad weather, (which no doubt there will be) or time, but still push quite hard.

The Gear

Backpack

ULA Catalyst 70L pack

Sleeping System

Hydration and Cooking System

Hygene/First Aid

Small first aid kit containing:

  • Medical tape
  • Bbandage
  • Sam splint
  • Pain killers
  • Suture strips
  • Iodine solution.

Hygene Kit containing:

  • Baby Wipes
  • Toothbrush/Tooth paste

Clothing

  • GT-2000 Shoes
  • Darn Tough Socks (2 Pairs)
  • Icebreaker Boxers (2 Pairs)
  • Running Shorts
  • Merino T-Shirt
  • Sweater
  • Goretex Pants
  • Goretex Jacket
  • Gloves
  • Hat

Food

Nutrition is an important part of any trip, if not the single most important part, especially when you are pushing for distance.  I wish to lose a few lbs on this trip, so I’ve set a daily calorie target of 3000calories.  Yes, that’s three thousand calories.  The recommended daily intake for an adult male is 2500 calories, that assumes a normal day sitting in the office pushing keys on a keyboard.  On this trip Ill likely burn between 4000 and 5000 calories a day, without at least 3000 calories a day, I’ll simply run out of steam after a few days as my body fails to get the energy it requires.

A typical day will consist of the following:

Breakfast

  • 1 Packet of Pop Tarts, these were my staple on the Pacific Crest Trail, and provide 400 calories per packet (4 packets per box)
  • Banana/Fresh fruit, when available, I’ll add fresh fruit to breakfast, this will likely be the first couple of days.

Lunch

  • Pork Pie (350 Calories)
  • Sandwich/Burrito 500(Calories)

Snacks

  • Home made Flap Jack (800 Calories)
  • Chocolate Bar (100 Calories)
  • Trail Mix (200 Calories)

Dinner

  • Pasta/Rice meal 250 Calories
  • Noodle Soup 250 Calories
  • Pudding or other desert (200 Calories)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *