It’s curiously satisfying to look upon a map of Scotland, during the weather forecast for example, and be able to trace the length of a decent walk. From Saturday 3 to Wednesday 7 August 2013 my friend Bob and I made our way along the Great Glen Way, starting in Fort William after taking the train up from Edinburgh via Glasgow. We pitched up in Inverness just fewer than 96 hours later, which we consider to be inside four days.
The terrain was varied (road, forest, plantation track, canal side paths, urban tarmac) but the direction was fairly unrelenting: heading north east for eighty miles or so. By the end of the penultimate day we were really feeling it, to be repeated 24 hours later when we got to Inverness – crippling tightness in the achilles tendon! Midges were limited in their presence, though sadly they wanted to a have a say when we were trying to pitch our tents on a couple of occasions. Not the best!
Food: we either ate very well (pies and steaks in hotels), lightly (bags of trail mix keeping us going through the day), or not at all (when we couldn’t find anywhere to sustain us!). On that basis we found the Great Glen Way to be less appealing than the West Highland Way, where there were more places to stop at just about all times in the day.
That said, I’d rather finish a walk in Inverness than Fort William. Inverness is a lovely place, full of history and character. I’ve never spent more than 24 hours in the place, so please see fit to add to or detract from my assessment!