I suppose that it was inevitable that at some time my body would start to complain about being abused. Yesterday afternoon I noticed that my left shin was aching and if anything it is worse today. It is not too bad but just a dull ache. I used my poles all day today to try to lessen the impact of my foot hitting the ground, and I think that helped. Other than that I seem to be holding up quite well. I have inevitably lost quite a bit of weight, two holes on my belt so far, and am glad I have some smaller trousers cached at Braemar.
Another glorious day in the Highlands. I left the Drovers’ Inn at 8.30. I had been a bit concerned about being in the pub rather than the annex. The Inn is supposed to be haunted. Luckily I was in the Gun Room and was not disturbed.
The route goes up Glen Falloch with the trail, the road, the river and the railway all competing for space. There are exquisite falls and rapids on the River Falloch.
Gradually gaining height, you cross the A82 and reach the old military road leading to a crossroads of paths above Crianlarich. As you climb, Ben More appears above the horizon in the north west.
From the crossroads a steep climb through a conifer plantation with an equally severe descent leads down to another crossing of the A82, and a fine old Viaduct which carried the old road.
Having successfully diced with death traversing the A82, the rewards are threefold. First come the glorious views of Ben More, Stob Binnein and Cruach Ardrain.
Next St Fillan’s Priory. This was established by Robert the Bruce on the site of a 12th century monastery and retains an atmosphere of peace.
Finally the Wigwam Trading Post which could supply tea.
Suitably refreshed the rest of the day was easy with the mountains ever seeming to grow in size. Ben Lui even managed to retain snow near its summit.
Just before Tyndrum the Way goes past the site of the Battle of Dalrigh. In 1306 Clan MacDougall ambushed Robert the Bruce here and forced him to flee into hiding. He got his revenge at Brander two years later.
There is a small lochan said to contain the Bruce’s claymore, thrown away after the battle. Why anyone would throw away his sword whilst being pursued by his enemies is not explained. [Katy says: Swords-in-lakes legends are probably based on distant race-memories of swords being deposited during the Bronze and Iron Ages as offerings to the local water deities. e.g. Flag Fen in Cambridgeshire]
I arrived at the By-the-Way Hostel a few minutes after it opened at 2.00pm. It has been good to have some time to relax and shop. I have decided to economise and self-cater tonight and for breakfast tomorrow.