Why hike in Scotland?
Is it wild and dangerous to hike in Scotland? It might seem a little scary if you are used to countryside paths on the south downs or riverside walks.
We do think we have mountains here and we’re not keen on littering the countryside with what we consider to be superfluous signposts. If you come up to Scotland to hike, you might need some navigational skill and you might need to use a map. You’ll probably need waterproofs and then there’s the dreaded midge. But putting those potential disadvantages aside – the rewards are outstanding (and some people consider the cooler, damper weather to be an advantage).
The scenery in the Highlands is world class
Skye isn’t the only place in the Highlands which offers truly amazing scenery. We have many favourite sites, some of which remain relatively undiscovered by the masses as they take a wee bit more effort to get to.
There is so much space you can get a true feeling of wilderness
If you’re into mountain walking, then there are over 280 Munros to choose from. Obviously some are more popular than others, but with that many to choose from, you’ll probably not see many others during your day out.
Even if you’re not mountain bagging, if you’re prepared to hike (rather than walk) for more than 1 hour, chances are you’ll find a spot which is deserted of other people. Even if you do come across a few others, there is so much landscape here that the masses can be absorbed and if you turn the right way, or go 10 minutes away from the crowd, you can still be alone.
Our access laws are outstanding
There are very few “Right to Roam” issues in Scotland now since we have had the Scottish Outdoor Access Code. So long as you are being responsible in the countryside, don’t intrude in someone’s cultivated garden; don’t worry livestock and make sure you are aware of other users and their activities; then you can go pretty much anywhere you please whether there is a path or not. This is a wee bit freaky to some people as we are trained by our culture in urban environments to keep to the paths.
How to make your hike unique?
- Don’t walk the West Highland Way.
- Include a stay with local people
- Book a local, experienced guide
- Join in any local events, at the very least visit the pub
- Take advice from the locals on where to go and how to make the best of the weather
- Ask where the best spots to see wildlife are
- Enjoy any opportunities to experience some local music in the evenings
- Eat local
If you’ve never hiked in Scotland before the choice available to you can be bemusing. This is where it comes in handy to join a guide or guided group to give you your first taster. An experienced guide can show you all kinds of things you’d never have noticed or appreciated on your own.
If you’re really looking for a unique walking experience, and you like animals, you might want to try this new adventure: Highland Wilderness Glamping – pack pony supported hiking with hot wild camping (heated tentipis and hot showers)
For more information visit: www.scotmountainholidays.com