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Guidebook to Scotland's Speyside Way, a 66 mile walk which follows the River Spey from Aviemore to Buckie. Divided into 10 stages, which range from 2 to 11 miles, the Speyside Way can be linked to the Dava Way and Moray Coast Trail, which are also described. Includes information on accommodation and a separate booklet of 1:25,000 maps.
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This guidebook describes the Speyside Way, one of Scotland's Great Trails that follows the River Spey for 66 mile (106km) through northern Scotland from Aviemore to the old port of Buckie on the Moray coast. Featuring easy walking on good paths and along disused railway lines, the route can be comfortably completed in a week and is presented in 10 stages of between 2 and 13 miles (3-21km).
The guide also details the recently opened 6½-mile (10.5km) extension to the Speyside Way between Kincraig and Aviemore as well as two alternatives to the main route and routes to the source of the Spey. Also featured are three other trails in the same region which can be combined with the Speyside Way to form a longer trek: the 25 mile (40km) Dava Way, 47 mile (76km) Moray Coast Trail and 12½ mile (20km) Badenoch Way.
Alongside detailed route description, the guide includes background information, local points of interest (including a list of distilleries!), tips on transport and accommodation and recommendations for mountain-bikers and riders, who can follow stretches of the route. A handy booklet containing all the OS 1:25,000 Explorer mapping needed to complete the Speyside Way is located in the back cover sleeve.
The Spey is Scotland's third longest river, famed for its salmon and its distilleries. Rising in the Monadhliath Mountains, it flows through remote glens to the Highland resort of Aviemore, surrounded by the wild Cairngorms. From there, the Speyside Way follows the river's course through the countryside, forests and small towns of Strathspey and Moray to reach its mouth on the Moray Firth and the unique shingle systems at Spey Bay.
The water tap at Blacksboat (page 123, Second Edition, 2016) is now labelled as contaminated and not fit for drinking.
|The official trails of Speyside and Moray|
|The routes in this guidebook|
|The River Spey|
|When to walk|
|Which direction to walk|
|Suggested longer routes|
|Suggested day walks|
|Mountain biking and horse riding|
|Campsites and wild camping|
|What to take|
|Navigation and waymarking|
|Walking in Scotland|
|Using this guide|
|THE SPEYSIDE WAY – SOURCE TO SEA|
|BADENOCH WAY AND LINKS|
|Stage 1 Aviemore to Boat of Garten|
|Stage 2 Boat of Garten to Nethy Bridge|
|Stage 3 Nethy Bridge to Grantown-on-Spey|
|Stage 4 Grantown-on-Spey to Cromdale|
|Stage 5 Cromdale to Ballindalloch station|
|Stage 6 Ballindalloch station to Aberlour|
|Stage 7 Aberlour to Craigellachie|
|Stage 8 Craigellachie to Fochabers|
|Stage 9 Fochabers to Spey Bay|
|Stage 10 Spey Bay to Buckie|
|MORAY COAST TRAIL|
|APPENDIX A Route summary table|
|APPENDIX B Useful contacts|
|APPENDIX C Further reading|
|APPENDIX D Whisky production and Speyside distilleries|
This guide focuses on the Speyside Way, one of Scotland's official Long Distance Routes, which follows the course of the beautiful River Spey from the edge of the mighty Cairngorm mountains at Aviemore, many miles downstream from its source, to Buckie on the Moray Firth. At only 66 miles in length, the main route of the Speyside Way is feasible for most walkers, even those of modest ability and ambition. But the guide also describes several other trails in Speyside and Moray that can be walked in their own right or linked to the Speyside Way to create longer and very varied routes through some of the region's best countryside. Together, the trails take walkers from the rugged mountain landscape near the source of the Spey to Spey Bay, where the mighty river empties into the ocean, and the guide is unique in describing a route along the Spey from ‘source to sea’.
The source of the Spey lies in the heart of a mountain and moorland wilderness in the huge upland range of the Monadhliath, to the west-south-west of Newtonmore. Wayfarers for centuries have been following routes through the remote upland glens of these mountains and over connecting passes. Although these documented trails, by their very nature and location, are not part of the official Speyside Way, they do allow the experienced modern-day long distance hiker inroads into these hills and to the very source of the Spey itself.
The guide also includes the Dava Way and Moray Coast Trail, so describing all the major and linking long distance routes in this region of Scotland. The three trails are each quite different in character and complement each other well – a valley and riverside walk, a ramble along a famous disused railway line and finally a coastal walk on one of the finest stretches of coast in the UK.
The trails in Speyside and Moray have something for all types of rambler, from the seasoned long distance walker to the day stroller in the countryside, from the complete novice and those of limited walking ability to the experienced hillwalker and fit backpacker. Moreover, cyclists and horse riders can also use many sections of these trails, which provide safe, traffic-free routes. And this guide describes it all!