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The West Highland Way

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| |-+  West Highland Way, from near Glasgow to Fort William, Scotland
| | |-+  Postal deliveries on the WHW

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Author Topic: Postal deliveries on the WHW  (Read 6882 times)
steve-o
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« on: January 30, 2011, 06:12:16 pm »

Guys et al

I'm looking at thinning down what I need to take on the walk and was wondering if there are known locations on the walk where you can have mail or parcels delivered to.

As I'm considering taking all the 1.25 maps that I'll need for the event I don't want to carry all these with me. As I build my packing list there will probably be other items I'll only want or need at certain parts of the walk (please don't ask what these are as I've not yet thought of my answers) I will be taking a GPS (once a buy a replacement unit for that one that failed on Tryfan) but obviously don't want to rely on it

I'm trying to keep down my expenditure on the event as I'm walking for charity and at the mo I'm not considering using a delivery service for moving my kit around
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Jacquetta
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« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2011, 01:53:01 pm »

Hello again, Steve

I don't know of postal drops other than the obvious idea of any B&B, bunkhouse or campsite that you are in a position to pre-book: get any parcels marked clearly to await arrival and add the date if you can. 

I didn't need a baggage service any of the times I walked the route.  You could save a bomb by not buying all those OS Explorers (I presume that's what you mean by 1:25,000)?  Instead of paying £80 for ten bulky maps, why not take one of the whole-route strip maps?  We recommend (and sell at a discount) the Footprint map (cover price £5.95, weight 30g) and there is also the Harvey map at £11.95. Both are waterproof and easy to read, although neither is as large-scale as the Explorers.  However, they are much easier to use on the hoof, and anyway the route is well waymarked, so why weigh yourself down?  Do you really need a GPS (and batteries and/or charger) in addition?  Huh

As for other packing, it's worth pondering this advice Shocked:
Quote
Take three socks: two to wear and one to wash.
  I don't suggest that you take this literally, but it's a useful check on most people's instinct to take far too much kit.  The less you take, the quicker your unpacking/repacking will be! Wink

Let us know what you decide.  Which charity is your walk in aid of, please?  And have you got our guidebook yet?
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Jacquetta Megarry, publisher of Rucksack Readers and forum moderator
Buggiba
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« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2011, 03:15:57 pm »

I can only agree with Jacquetta. Take as little as possible. The Footprint map is absolutely fantastic, even showing each mile you pass. Good boots, trekking socks, lightweight, quick-dry trousers, trainers and change of clothing + waterproofs (as if) should be all you need. GPS would be superfluous. A toothbrush and paste, deoderant, vaseline (for obvious reasons) toilet roll and towel should be most of what you carry. Keep food and drink to a minimum too. Water can be very heavy after 20 miles Shocked. There are natural lunch and overnight stops en route and some excellent pubs Grin.
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Jacquetta
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« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2011, 06:54:28 pm »

Quote
Water can be very heavy after 20 miles.
Good point, Buggiba: it's also heavy even before you set out, weighing 1 kg per litre (about one pound per pint), so carry only as much as you need and plan to top up.  Most pubs/cafés or even food shops will fill your water bottle free of charge, but always buy something as a courtesy/thankyou.  (I carry purification tablets to avoid being caught out in long sections, but then I am a very thirsty walker.)

I use the technical trousers with zip-off legs, among other reasons so if there's a really boggy bit I can always rinse out the lower legs and they dry super-fast.  That way I don't need spare trousers.

Re towels, the trekking kind are very light and quick to dry.  Hope these ideas help?

However, it's always a mystery to me how the rucksack seems heavier at the end of the day when it must actually be lighter (because the water has been drunk)! Huh
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Jacquetta Megarry, publisher of Rucksack Readers and forum moderator
Buggiba
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« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2011, 02:06:08 pm »

Hi Steve-o, do you know if any bag-carrying services operate north to south? We used Travel-Lite last time and intend doing so again this year. Their service was exemplary and better than punctual. I know thay are charging £40 for the whole week this year but, at £5-ish per day, you really wouldn't want to be carrying a huge rucksack. Some of the sheep-creeps under the railway are impossible to negotiate with a full pack, unless you take it off Angry. Think very carefully about which way round to do it. A lot of the accommodation is already booked up so don't delay too long Wink.
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steve-o
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« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2011, 08:02:59 pm »

All

Many thanks for the valuable replies.  there is a great deal of LDP experience in here and I'm very glad to be able to pull on it

To try and answer all our questions in one go:

> The route is well waymarked,
I'd read in other forums that there were issues with some of the waymarking and some signs were well hidden in undergrowth during the summer months

>Do you really need a GPS
Well that is the question GP Yes or No?  Yes I can read a map and nav.  I always take a GPS with me for fun mainly. Bagging a summit altitude that kind of thing or on long walks its easier (not always better) to way mark points on the map on the GPS to keep me on track rather than getting the map out, stopping, checking my location... Yep spare batteries are another issue. I'm looking at a solar charger for the route to charge my phone en route. Dunno how good it will be but it may be the device I need to recharge my GPS batteries as well ?!!??

>The less you take, the quicker your unpacking/repacking will be!
Exceptionally valuable point. Yes it’s just Feb but for some reason my exped bag is packed for the WHW.  I'm using it as part of my training to walk home from work with it, 4 miles a night.  I've thinned down what I need and items such as spare clothing will become a real luxury on the trip. As well as other items I may want to take. I’ve already decided not to take the SLR but take a smaller happy snappy camera...I hope I'll be happy with the results...

>Which charity is your walk in aid of, please?  And have you got our guidebook yet?
I'm walking for "The Christies Cancer Research Trust".  My page is at www.justgiving.com/Steve-Ray . Got the Guidebook a couple of weeks ago from Amazon. Read it back to front. Especially like the maths on the inside cover :-)

>Vaseline (for obvious reasons)
No idea what you're talking about ... Oh right. Of course :-)

>There are natural lunch and overnight stops en route and some excellent pubs
Thats my next task planning the overnight stops.  My walking partner for this event is bringing her partner who is incredibly kindly going to be meeting us for some of the nights in a campsite with a folding camper and ensuring we get a good nights sleep...

>Water can be very heavy after 20 miles.
This is my worry.  Looking at the route and again what I've read there can be long sections without fresh water and I'm already out of space in my exped bag.  I probably drink around 3 litres on expeds as well as energy drinks.  This is a lot of water to carry as well as everything else during the sections where we do not have the luxury of my walking partner’s partner

>purification tablets
Another good idea

>I use the technical trousers with zip-off legs
Me too...Still playing with the idea of removing my gaiters from my bag

>Some of the sheep-creeps under the railway are impossible to negotiate
Is it not possible to walk around these rather than thru ? or is that cheating ? :-)

>A lot of the accommodation is already booked up
Bloody eck ... That’s keen.  I've seen some accommodation in Kinlochleven and Tyndrum...If the worst comes to the worst I've got my 1 man tent and I'll kip by the track

As ever thanks for the support and help with this




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Buggiba
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« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2011, 11:07:53 pm »

Hi Steve-o,

You say in your earlier post that you want to keep costs down. With that in mind please consider the following:
From Fort William there is NO accommodation before Kinlochleven. Here there are B+B's, hotels and bunkhouses. The latter are the cheapest at about £13-£15pppn.

After Kinlochleven you have to really decide between the Kingshouse Hotel (£29 pppn without breakfast), Inveroran Hotel or the bunkhouses at Bridge of Orchy. The one behind the hotel is excellent at £18pppn.

After Bridge of Orchy I would advise against Beinglas Farm. That leaves Tyndrum, Crianlarich or Inverarnan, unless you fancy the trudge to Inversnaid or the Youth Hostel at Rowardennan.

Thereafter you have to choose between Balmaha, Drymen (including the wigwam site at Drumquassie) or the whole way to Milngavie. Lots to consider but I reallly would recommend booking early.

I am doing it South to North in May and have been fully booked for nearly a month. Even this early some places were already sold out. It is a popular route and time of year (hopefully before the midges come out to play) Angry
Don't hesitate to ask if I can be of any further help in your planning.

Finally:
Quote
Can you walk around the sheep-creeps?

No, they go under the railway. Apart from the extra climb, this would not only be dangerous but also illegal. Shocked
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