Coastal Hikes NW Scotland

Discussion in 'Places & Planning' started by PhilHo, Oct 11, 2018.

  1. PhilHo

    PhilHo Trail Blazer

    I've watched this video a few times over the years. If you go to 7 minutes in they wax lyrical about the beauty of the coastal scenery. I've occasionally thought about doing a route in the far north west that includes significant coastal sections.

    Does anyone have any suggestions?

    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
    OneBeardedWalker likes this.
  2. cathyjc

    cathyjc Thru Hiker

    I've walked 'coastal' in the Islands - Islay and Jura - but not on the mainland.
    The main thing is to choose a stretch that is not inhabited otherwise camping can become awkward - all cultivated fields and numerous fences to cross :arghh:.
    At sea level braken is an issue - it's a tick haven - pushing thru' it all day isn't a good idea - so go early spring / late autumn, before/after it's in growth.
    Also check the route 'goes' - crossing rivers is more of an issue, and 'cliffs' can block your way.
    I love the coast and when the hills are 'unavailable' due to weather/snow etc. it's a great way to get out. :)
    Take binoculars and hope to see otters :thumbsup:
    PhilHo likes this.
  3. cathyjc

    cathyjc Thru Hiker

  4. PhilHo

    PhilHo Trail Blazer

    Your route is very interesting not least because it isn't obvious on the OS map as in places there are no paths or tracks. I'm interested in what gave you the confidence that you would be able to find a relatively easy way through.
  5. cathyjc

    cathyjc Thru Hiker

    There is a Cicerone guide to Jura which helps with the finding a way thru'.
    But I like "exploring" and was prepared to backtrack, wander about, and not 'fash m'self' about distance covered.
    No paths/tracks is the appeal = fewer other folks :D.
    Confidence :facepalm: - it was just a big "empty' bit on the map that beckoned "come check me out" - as long as I carried enough food what could go wrong ?? :whistling::whistling:
  6. PhilHo

    PhilHo Trail Blazer

    Like your style!
    cathyjc likes this.
  7. Fair Weather Camper

    Fair Weather Camper Thru Hiker

    I've bike packed the Outer Hebrides most of the mahair coastal sections of Barra and Uists are very wild campable ,.

    Whole perimeter of Harris ( my personal fave island) also has spectacular coastal parts all round - mountains straight down into sea with tropical (for me) beaches in between.


    Crinkly western edge of Mull also very good - this from slopes of Ben More over looking tiny island of Ulva https://www.instagram.com/p/BLOnN5VBlg0/?taken-by=vegetable_dalliance

    Which has spooky ruined villages to camp in, and interesting geology ...

    Of course plenty other options - @lentenrose a coastal walker on here has given me some good tips in the past.
    I'm not sure how to link to another thread but his advice was contained within a thread called 'Mulling on Mull' I believe

    We walked a section of the Torridon coast this spring as well - plenty nice enough - but one gets spoilt living down here hard by the Southwest Coast path.

    Applecross, and Ardnamurchen, and Arran are cool too.

    Too many options - not enough time,

    Yet to make it to Sandwood Bay - which is lovely, by all accounts - a project for another year....
    OneBeardedWalker and PhilHo like this.
  8. PhilHo

    PhilHo Trail Blazer

    I used to do sections of the SW coast path 40+ years ago each Easter. I went down on my own (my Dad was a train driver so I got a number of free tickets each year) and stayed in youth hostels. I never walked on my own though, always met up with Ausies or Kiwis to walk and chat with. Happy memories.
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  9. lentenrose

    lentenrose Trail Blazer

    cathyjc posts inspired me to go to jura and i i piggybacked my trip report onto cathys----i tried 3 times to find a route to the west coast from the track on the east side---at one time i paddled for 1/2 mile in water about 6 inches deep----my back up plan if i twisted an ankle or injured myself would be to pitch tent for a couple of days and hopefully recuperate but i couldn t find a spot big enough and dry enough to pitch a tent---- i am older and wiser now but regret i wasn t bolder and forced myself across difficult terain to the west coast -----land of cathys wonderful photos which got me there in the first place
  10. PhilHo

    PhilHo Trail Blazer

    I've read the recommended threads. Great reports and pictures, proper exploring with wonderful rewards for the effort. This is exactly the sort of thing I was looking for. Thanks to @cathyjc and @lentenrose for pointing me in a great direction.
  11. cathyjc

    cathyjc Thru Hiker

    As @lentenrose says getting to the west coast is a "bogfest", but once there - there are odd patches of inevitable bogginess, but the going is in general much nicer :).
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2018
  12. PhilHo

    PhilHo Trail Blazer

    Mull would be an interesting option for me I met my wife there on a botany field trip and we honeymooned on the Ross of Mull.

    Having been given inspiration by your post I've gone looking for routes.

    I see there's a path marked on the map from Lochbuie to Carsaig and then on to Malcolms Point.
    There are reports on this route here https://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/mull/carsaig-lochbuie.shtml and here https://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/mull/carsaig-arches.shtml

    Bits of the route look very narrow. Take a look at this video.

  13. Fair Weather Camper

    Fair Weather Camper Thru Hiker

    Yes i believe was on my way to do above ( on foot of course - the poor bike gets abandoned quite regularly ) then got a puncture - and then distracted by a Tea shoppe - then only just had time to get that nights pitch pre next mornings ferry crossing - iirc :redface:

    But folks I'd talked to beforehand didn't seem to imply it comprised too much drama - I think it was a case of getting the tides right.

    And of course it depends on what you are used to - but I'd imagine the path is wide enough - unless your feet are very broad.

    I guess if its a reliving of the honeymoon thing, then this route might preclude the whole walking hand in hand business.

    Maybe you already found it but I'd misremembered the thread title, containing @lentenroses very helpful advice ...

    It was this one

    http://www.trek-lite.com/index.php?threads/if-someone-here-cant-help-me.2459/
  14. PhilHo

    PhilHo Trail Blazer

    I've been married for 37 years, holding hands is no longer a necessity ;)

    But I do have big feet and rather fat ankles if this pic is anything to go by. Thanks for the link.

    [​IMG]
  15. Fair Weather Camper

    Fair Weather Camper Thru Hiker


    Nice shoes - but not total cankles

    Just cos you've been together for 37 years - doesn't mean you should take each other for granted :angelic:

    But yeah holding hands does make sensible walking a tad tricky :geek:
  16. cathyjc

    cathyjc Thru Hiker

    Nice video. April time I guess - good time to be there. Arch No.3 is quite spectacular :thumbsup:. Lots of arches and caves on Jura and NW Islay :).
    You must check your tide times if you go walking coastal paths.

    The wee paths are used/made by the goats, IME, and are always narrow, sometimes precarious, and occasionally passable only by goats. I've had to "back down" a few times :whistling::banghead:
    I'm usually carrying a full pack 10-15Kg (21kg at one point :speechless::sour:), so the 'daring do' factor isn't that high where I've been an Islay and Jura.

    PS. I must write the Islay trip up :bag::bag::bag:
    Fair Weather Camper likes this.
  17. Fair Weather Camper

    Fair Weather Camper Thru Hiker

    Yes do write up the trip Cathy :) not been there - yet .

    Are the goats still there??

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