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Walk the West Highland Way with a Cicerone guide

Cover of The West Highland Way
2 Oct 2013
17.2 x 11.6 x 0.9cm
1st Published
5 Oct 2011
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The West Highland Way

by Terry Marsh
Book published by Cicerone Press

A handy pocket sized guidebook for anyone planning to walk the West Highland Way National Trail. The popular 95-mile long-distance route from Glasgow to Fort William typically takes less than a week to walk, passing through the stunning scenery that Scotland has to offer. A description of the Way is also provided for walkers from north to south.

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The 95 miles (152km) of the West Highland Way passes through the lush lowlands north of Milngavie into the rugged landscapes of Loch Lomond, Glen Falloch and Strath Fillan before heading for Rannoch Moor and Black Mount. Touching briefly on Glencoe, it climbs finally to the hidden glen of Lairig Mor before finishing in Fort William.

Now over 30 years old, the West Highland Way was the first long-distance route to be officially designated in Scotland. Much of the route pursues ancient drove roads or old military roads built to help in the control of Jacobite clansmen.

The Way is usually walked from Glasgow to Fort William (south to north), probably because that is the way it was conceived. Given the connection with the Great Glen Way at Fort William, the route can be walked in one longer journey between Glasgow and Inverness, or vice versa. This guidebook also contains a route description of the Way from Fort William to Glasgow (north to south).

  • illustrated with OS mapping and colour photos
  • includes suggested itineraries for walking the West Highland Way over 6, 7 and 8 days
  • lots of useful tips on preparing for a trip, what to take and how to plan your itinerary
  • information about the Way’s ancient history
  • Seasons
    May-June and September-October are best time to walk the Way, although it is wise to avoid the first week in May, when there are motorcycle trials along sections of the route; July and August are very busy; if you set off mid-week, you will find the accommodation less crowded
  • Centres
    the West Highland Way begins in Milngavie, on the outskirts of Glasgow, and passes through only a few, small villages: Drymen; Balmaha; Crianlarich, Tyndrum and Kinlochleven before reaching Fort William
  • Difficulty
    walkers need a good level of fitness and previous experience of long distance walking; you need to prepare yourself in advance by building up your walking distances; be fully equipped and prepared for all weathers
  • Must See
    the peaceful woodlands of Mugdoch Country Park; the magnificent expanse of Loch Lomond; the wilds of Glen Falloch; the history of Strath Fillan; and the wide expanses of Rannoch Moor and Black Mount

March 2014

Walkers leaving the West Highland Way, and bound for Crianlarich, will find that the path is temporarily obstructed by roadworks creating a new Crianlarich bypass. Walkers should proceed with caution, and follow any waymarking. This diversion is expect to last until summer 2014.

November 2013

A map error on p35 means around 1 mile of the route is not illustrated. A revised spread of pp34–35, with the correct map section showing, is available here.

September 2013


The Gear shop listing for Kinlochleven should read 'Yes'.


The West Highland Way
Weather and when to go
Getting there
Planning your walk
Suggested itineraries
Using this guide
Access in Scotland
Section 1 Milngavie to Drymen
Section 2 Drymen to Rowardennan
Section 3 Rowardennan to Crianlarich
Section 4 Crianlarich to Bridge of Orchy
Section 5 Bridge of Orchy to Kingshouse
Section 6 Kingshouse to Kinlochleven
Section 7 Kinlochleven to Fort William
Section 1 Fort William to Kinlochleven
Section 2 Kinlochleven to Kingshouse
Section 3 Kingshouse to Bridge of Orchy
Section 4 Bridge of Orchy to Crianlarich
Section 5 Crianlarich to Rowardennan
Section 6 Rowardennan to Drymen
Section 7 Drymen to Milngavie
Appendix A Useful contacts
Appendix B Route summary table
Appendix C Facilities along the Way
Appendix D Further reading
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