This really did it for Tori's (by this point) weak joints and it took us ages to reach the bothy at Sourlies. This 6 day walk starts at the remote Kinloch Horn and takes you through some of the most spectacular scenery that the Scottish Highlands have to offer, finishing where the trail passes near Ullapool. The Cape Wrath Trail is challenging and frustrating, mostly because the "Cape Wrath Trail" is something that someone (probably on the internet) made up. To complement the "How hard can it be?Could you run an 8-day epic through wild Scotland" article featuring the Cape Wrath Ultra™ in the latest issue of Trail Running Magazine, we've got some extra content for you to savour featuring Hazel Robertson, née Clyne, (joint 58th with Luke) and Iain Prentice (20th).Thanks to Claire Maxted for the questions! Near the top, there was a fun wire bridge crossing that offered many opportunities for pictures. In 2020 I also walked a major part of it south to north on my Dover to Cape Wrath walk.. Stefan also managed to lose his one and only shirt at the bottom, so he got to hike it once and run it a second time. The Cape Wrath Trail does not offer hikers the luxury of certainty: flexibility is a critical part of the trailblazer’s mountain kit. For more information on planning your CWT hike, please see this article. © Ordnance Survey document.write(new Date().getFullYear()); / Privacy Policy. We stuck close to the ocean after being told it was less boggy there. It seemed like the end when we finally reached a 4x4 and indeed we did pass Bendronaig Lodge. After the bothy, the path is clear, or at least easy, past some big lochs. You can connect the two endpoints by hiking over any trails you want, even hiking cross-country or a mix, if it suits you. Some sections of the trail are very demanding and a good level of fitness is needed, especially when a heavy pack is added to the equation. When I finally reached the lighthouse, I was met with a friendly hello from a lady laying out in the sun. It really is gorgeous, and there's a surprising amount of sand. Fortuitously, it was closed, so we could camp in their pristinely manicured lawn. Speaking of the bothy - Shenavall was our favorite bothy of the entire trip. The CWT is an incredible route – beautiful, tough and truly unique. The first day of this trek really let us know what we were in for. Cape Wrath lighthouse. Aug 06, 2014; Choice of maps is a particularly important decision when planning an expedition on the Cape Wrath Trail. The Cape Wrath Trail (let’s call it the CWT from now on) is known as Scotland’s most challenging long-distance trail. Its warm fire and friendly Scots saved us from what would have otherwise been a miserable night. I decided that I had to do it. Having said all that, this trail is a stunning long distance route. Should you just make your own route? But if you put some effort forward, you'll see some pretty spectacular scenery and get a damn good taste of the Scottish highlands. Today was the first day that we started to have joint issues. The Cape Wrath Trail is the UK’s best long-distance hike. There's an overpriced cafe there, and likely some weathered hikers just finishing up their own journey. View fullsize. For the experienced backpacker it offers an irresistible challenge: over two hundred miles of continuously superb hiking through the most beautiful landscapes in Scotland. Apparently it was, as we didn't get soaked, but it was hard walking, with lots of up and downs and absolutely no sign of any trail whatsoever. But we can tell you it worked for us, and their were no cliffs in the way. We would highly recommend pushing on to Maol Bhuide, though. Cape Wrath Trail Gear List. A very boggy downhill section took most of our time. Note - all times and distances are estimates based on our actual experiences (ie, when we got lost). The real challenge with the CWT is that it crosses the Scottish Highlands: one of the last wild areas in the British Isles. Know what you’re taking on. Mar 16, 2014; Keeping your feet in working order . Next, it climbs up next to the Falls of Glomach. The CWT offers some of the most magnificent landscapes and views I have found in the British Isles, but to gain access to them you must endure wet and demanding underfoot conditions, rapidly changing weather, exposure to the elements and a vast emptiness that is rare to find the UK anymore. It … It explains why we chose to hike it north to south, plus all the gritty details of the trip (including what we'd do differently). The CWT can still be walked in any way you would like, but has, in general, roughly followed the route suggested by Denis Brook and Phil Hinchliffe since they proposed it in 1999. Definitely camp there - afterwards, the trail disintegrates into gnarly bog. Generally the north is more populated than the South so you'll see more through hikers there. Which is basically my plan. The country isn't as green as you think. It’s not actually a trail though, but a route. But, be warned, it can happen. After a few easy kilometers along the road we reached the lighthouse at Cape Wrath and took the appropriate pictures. No one seemed to care, and it meant that we had a toilet and running water at our disposal. There are also many decision to be made before even leaving that are beyond the standard long trail decisions, such as: All of these are very important decisions that are taken long before travel planning or gear updates begin; these are decisions that should be taken in the idea stage. When planning to walk the Cape Wrath Trail you will quickly learn that information is scarce and a lot of pre-trip research is needed. Discovering bluebell woods with the Isle of Wight Walking Festival, Discovering bluebell woods with the Isle of Wight Walking Festival - an ideal spring walking route. We were told this was the best part of the trek. Your own thoughts about the Cape Wrath Trail? The next section of trail was quite pleasant, if boggy, following for a couple hours along the first real lochs of the trip. They will also help prepare you for the CWT, and your ability to handle the first and last of the three big challenges. As much as the CWT is a long distance walk, it is not a trail you take to with a few maps and a guide book; it requires careful planning - from the walking route to food carrying to missing gear. Then, we entered the lovely Glen Douchary. The trail from Stack Lodge follows a proper road briefly and then turns up and up past some lovely lakes. This day was very slow going, but also included a stop at Cape Wrath. If you've decided to hike it, or are considering your own trip to Scotland, here's our itinerary to help you complete the journey in a fairly reasonable two weeks. Why would I want to do the Cape Wrath Trail alone at all? Will you be hunkering down every time the weather turns? The other thing it needs to be approached with is a camera, or at least a half-decent smartphone in my case. Check out detailed information in our post here. All that time I was thinking hard and long what to do next. We camped on a green piece of lawn in front of an abandoned building and got a bit of flac from the owner. The trail is EXTREMELY good here, the best of the whole trip, so soak it in. The route can be walked in groups or solo, though it is most commonly done in pairs. View fullsize. This is the terrain through which the Cape Wrath Trail runs. The usual seasonal window for hiking the Cape Wrath Trail in summer-like conditions (i.e. The Cape Wrath Trail is a non-trivial expedition through the wildest country remaining in the British Isles and it does need to be approached with a modicum of respect. Continue reading » Harvey Cape Wrath Trail Maps. It isn't so hard, and the trail offers great views. Find out how the big day went and how you go about preparing for such an event in the British outdoors! The alternative would have been to hike a longer day to Glenfinnan, finishing the following day with a short walk and final hitch or ferry to Fort Williams. A few hours later a shrieking woman appeared demanding that everyone get off her lawn. Video documenting my April 2018 attempt of the Cape Wrath Trail. It was very easy, starting at the bridge in Kinlochewe; we snagged two quick rides from there. It courteously takes just an arm as payment, rather than both an arm and a leg. Gilad Nachmani has advice for anyone planning on taking on the last British wilderness. Britain’s wildest weather, which can leave you hiking for days without dry gear, is one thing that slows you down. The walk to the School House bothy is very easy from Oykel, and highly recommended. D I was looking into all possible directions, checking buses, ferries and trains. Sign up to receive the very best of OS and its group of companies, straight to you by email. There weren't any trains that day, because it was a bank holiday. We climbed past some sheep farms and walked a clear path through pretty, if high, terrain. The Cape Wrath Trail is an unofficial long distance trail and as such it is very remote and rarely walked. OS GetOutside Champion Cat Webster takes us on a two-day bothy adventure, taking in two Munros along the way. It probably wouldn't have been any cheaper anyway, since we booked the busses in advance. Here’s how to make the most of it. The landscape is stunning. Last year when I walked the trail I kept a pretty good pace, and my experience on recent trips showed me that 5 km/h is a reasonable pace for me. It's passed a fucking brutal moorland, though. His primary interest is ultrapacking - long distance, fast multi-day self supported trips, including the Cape Wrath Trail - you can see more about how he took it on twice - in 2015 and 2016 on his blog. It took surprisingly long to reach Barrisdale, so we stopped there for lunch. Many describe the CWT as the hardest (or toughest) route in the UK, but I think it is not the route that makes it hard - it is the setting it is in. This is because the difficulty of the terrain and the lack of way marking (or even defined paths in many places). It's all old fire road, and pretty flat. The bottom of the valley is a great place for a picnic. There are a million different variations, directions, and ideas when it comes to this route. Most sections have at least one climb over a bealach that can be very challenging, especially if there is snow present. There are very long pathless sections where you need skillful navigation (An absolute requirement!) The Cape Wrath Trail is among the UK’s toughest but also most rewarding long-distance routes – where better to find solitude and a break from the noise of switched-on modern living? Once in town, we decided to save some time and hitch hiked from Blairmore to Rinconich. Unlike some other, better known and organised trails, the CWT is best enjoyed when you are actually out there, coming to terms with the weather and seeing the landscape. Climbing 250 metres when you’re pushing through waist deep bogs is … Pack light. Aug 06, 2014; Harvey Cape Wrath Trail Maps. We left our little campsite and walked for an annoyingly long time through the town of Morvich. 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