West Highland Way Adventure - MND

At the end of March some friends and I completed the West Highland Way. I decided to do the challenge in aid of MND Scotland and we managed to raise an amazing total of £1891.00. The challenge was really daunting as completing 96 miles over 4 days seemed epic. We had done a lot of training though and it proved to carry us through. I have listed below our itinerary and where we stayed along the way. Our main method of doing this run walk was to run the flat and run down the hills but to walk up every hill as it really does save your legs. Every evening we tried to do at least half an of foam rollering our muscles and we used some massage balls that Amy brought along. This basically saved legs,  along with deep heat and ibuprofen gel lol x

Lomond Paper co. - West Highland Way Map

{Day 1}  Milngavie – Rowardennan (27 miles) 6 hours 30 minutes

Rowardennan Youth Hostel

The first day the weather was amazing, and the route is fairly flat and just a little undulating from Milngavie to Drymen. Leaving Drymen and heading towards Conic Hill and Balamha it gets more hilly ending in Conic Hill which is fairly steep at 361metres. From Balamha up to Rowardennan the route is beautiful along Loch Lomond and it’s is again fairly undulating. We all found this last section fairly tough as we were becoming tired. We were all happy to finally find the youth hostel.

Lomond Paper Co. - West Highland Way Day 1

{Day 2}  Rowardennan – Tyndrum (26 miles) 7 hours

By The Way Hostel

Day 2 was tough but weirdly it was one of my favourite days as I had never seen the Loch from this viewpoint and not many people do as there are no roads on this side of Loch. The weather was wet and windy, and we were all in full waterproofs. We saw numerous rainbows as we made our way along the path. The first 4-6 miles along this part of the loch are very slow going as its hard to run. It’s basically boulder climbing and clambering along the Loch side. It eventually opens out at the end of the loch and looks beautiful.

Lomond Paper Co. - West Highland Way Day 2

Lomond Paper Co. - West Highland Way Day 2

The next few hours we spent trying to get into a running rhythm as most of the morning we had been walking. This was tricky after running most of yesterday. We were all beginning to get wee niggles. I found mine came and went. You just try to ignore them and soak up the scenery. We eventually get near to Crainlarich and then we climb up steeply, but the woodland was beautiful and there was a carpet of bright orange pine needles on the floor. I think we were all relived to finally get into Tyndrum.

{Day 3} Tyndrum – Kingshouse (19 miles) 5 hours 25 minutes

Kingshouse Bunkhouse

I think all three of us didn’t sleep too well in Tyndrum in our wee Hobbit House. It was a little cramped after being in Rowardennan Youth Hostel. We set off fairly early and the path zig zags over the A82 a couple of times before taking us a really steep climb with amazing views over the surrounding mountains. We then dropped down into a valley and then started on an old military road which was hard going on the feet and legs as it was cobbled. Our bodies were getting juddered a lot. You finally come out of the hills and go down onto Rannoch Moor and we could see the Kingshouse Hotel in the distance.

We knew that day 3 was our shortest day so that was a relief and the fact that we had been up graded to the NEW Kingshouse Hotel as the bunkhouse was shut due to maintenance work kept as all going. We even had a bath!!! It was amazing to rest our muscles in a bath. I am sure it made all the difference and they took our bags to our room too AMAZING!!!

Lomond Paper Co. - West Highland Way Day 3

Lomond Paper Co. - West Highland Way Day 3

{Day 4}  Kingshouse – Fort William (25 miles) 7 hours 

Glen Nevis Youth Hostel

We had a fabulous night’s sleep in the Kingshouse Hotel and I really enjoyed our last day as we knew we were nearly finished, and I think it’s an amazing route. The first thing you encounter on leaving Kingshouse is the Devil’s staircase and it is a steep climb up, but it doesn’t go on for too long. It then meanders down for at least 6/7 miles into Kinlochleven. From Kinlochleven you again take a big climb up into a beautiful valley that sweeps round and up to Fort William. I think this section has to be my favourite. It’s remote and beautiful with lots of different types of scenery. The end section is woodland and there is a very long downhill run into Fort William which is a killer on the knees after 4 days run walking. We were hobbling down that hill that’s for sure.

Lomond Paper Co. - West Highland Way Day 4

Lomond Paper Co. - West Highland Way Day 4

Lomond Paper Co. - West Highland Way Day 4

We were so elated to finally get into Fort William. It was an amazing journey and I would totally recommend it. My two favourite days were weirdly the longest days, but they had the best scenery. That’s day 2 and Day 4.

Food wise we stuck to eating little and often we were burning between 2500-3000 calories a day, so we were eating fairly regular throughout the day.

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