Summary: Ullapool to the Great Glen
I arrived at the Great Glen on the 8th August. This is a bit of a milestone. While I haven't yet quite done quarter of the distance, I reckon I've exerted at least quarter of the total amount of effort. I've done 3/5 of the Munros, and over half the Corbetts, so from here there should be a bit less climbing. I've gone through the Rough Bounds and had some of the harsh weather of the North-West Highlands. This afternoon I'll set out on the last really long stage without resupply - I hope I'll reach Tyndrum in 10 days, but it could be 12 or more.
Setting out from Ullapool, I had some great weather, and enjoyed some fantastic hiking over Seana Bhraigh and the mountains immediately after. I arrived in Kinlochewe in fewer days than I expected. Sadly the good weather didn't last out, and I subsequently had two weeks where it rained at least a little every day. The ground was waterlogged and so I spent many days walking permanently wet boots and socks.
The going was tough - in places very tough, so I sometimes only managed 12km in a full day. Ridges full of ups and downs to negotiate and some awkward crags; tussocky grass, hard to step through and wet and slippery to descend; moss which sinks under every footstep; and occasional thick heather or bracken.
Nevertheless, these are some great mountains. The Fannichs were lovely, Kintail remote and desolate, the Rough Bounds memorably wild and rocky. They're not very popular - I saw a few hikers on the Fannichs, and some on the south Glen Shiel Ridge, but few elsewhere. Deer, grouse and frogs are the most common creatures around.
I grew ever more hungry. Kinlochewe and the Cluanie Inn made good stopping points, where I ate lots and lots to refuel. I managed to stay reasonably fit and healthy however - with the exception of one toe rubbing against another one, my feet are in good shape. My legs often ache in the mornings, but not excessively, and other complaints are similarly minor.
I feel like I'm putting off leaving today… although it really should be a rest day, it's not yet raining like the forecast said it would. Worrying about the weight of my bag when I finally come to leave. I've still a bunch of food to eat through first, after already eating a self-made fried breakfast and plenty of other stuff.
So - I'm steadily working my way through the high mountains. I have to say I'm looking forward to reaching the end of the area where phone reception is mostly non-existent, accommodation rare and shops even less common. The wilderness is awesome, but the logistics prove quite a struggle. But there are some interesting locations to look forward to over the next couple of weeks first, Stob Poite Coire Ardair, Ben Alder and the Black Mount among the high summits.