West Highland Way Sept 2013 And May 2014

After completing WHW in Sept 2012, we vowed we would be back, A. to do it correctly, ie Conic Hill and going to the right over Glen Nevis on the last day not cheating and using the shorter road route.
Well we did return with Tash, Garth's other half the following September.
Much fun was had, another load of great people, especially Calvin from Hong Kong, who came to our apartment on the last evening for a slap up Steak sandwich. I didn't do a blog of the walk this time round as we were too busy enjoying ourselves. Finishing the walk i already knew I had to return in May to do the walk by myself this time.
Well I did, it was brilliant, third time in 2 years and still it was a joy to walk and meet people.
Special shout out must go to Daniel and Sarah for the last three days, Just after leaving Bridge of Ochy everyone I'd met up to that point was left behind and I felt a bit sad that I'd met everyone I was going to meet. Dan and Sarah came along at the cairn in between Bridge of Ochy and Inveraron and we had a great time enjoying Rannoch Moor and an evening in Kingshouse Hotel. Good food and drink, feeding wild deer by hand outside. The following day I went off piste at top of Devil's Staircase, turning left and ascending another 500 ft to a view encompassing a lot more of Glen Coe, Blackwater reservoir and the Mamores, including Ben Nevis. Descending down to Kinlochleven, I was constantly avoiding trail bikes and arriving in town was confronted by hundreds more and a mass of people. Little did I know it was a yearly event and I had picked the wrong, or right depending on your view, weekend. Luckily I'd sorted my accom out the previous September on returning home and it was great seeing all the classic bikes of the sort my Dad used to ride when he did trailing.
All in all I'd have to say it was probably the best walk of the three. Coming off Rannoch Moor I got quite emotional. The views, Queen's " who wants to live forever", Dire Strait's "Brothers in arms" and "Going Home" on my mp3, I had to hold myself together. I was skipping from rock to rock, teary eyed. I had to slow down, i didn't want to get injured and ruin the walk.
I also decided, on the Saturday morning in Kinlochleven, because the weather was so good to find a room for Sunday evening and go up, or attempt to at any rate Ben Nevis. I sorted the room and getting up Sunday morning was greeted by really crappy weather which only got worse. Oh well, I wasn't cancelling so set of in light rain. I made it up to 3000 feet which was  my goal if I didn't reach the top. Lots of people turned back too so I didn't worry too much about it. There's always next time.!
I cannot emphasise enough what walking does for your body and soul. Maybe not the body in my case, as I seem to put weight on, on a walk, not lose it. That may have something to do with the full English every day, lunching and a big evening meal, but spiritually,and I'm loathe to use that word as I hold no truck with religion, it is fantastic. It seems daft I know, after all it's just walking, but trust me, try it and you will see.
Anyway that's enough for now. I have just finished walking the Cotswold Way and am going to write a blog of that walk so keep your eyes open for that one. Let's just say, It's tough, tougher than the WHW by a long shot.

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