For preceding post see Rob Roy’s Way – Part 1
After what ‘in my opinion’ was the best breakfast of our whole holiday we waddle on our way. A little bit of low cloud about but nothing to dampen our spirits. We discussed whether we were going to follow the main path through Killin or take an alternative route which would reduce our mileage considerably. We decided on the Killin route as we all wanted to see the Falls of Dochart. It was well worth the visit. The falls are incredible and proved a very popular spot with lots of photographers. St. Fillan’s Mill on the opposite side of the river is just one of the gorgeous photo opportunities. Watch your step though; I went for a purler on one of the stones leading down to the waters edge. Really thought I’d broken my camera not worrying too much about my throbbing hip bone!
This was our longest day with the steepest climbs and descents, nothing major, but with the mileage we needed to cover to get to our next bed and breakfast we couldn’t rest on our laurels for too long.
The day was full of spectacular views, lots of ‘oohs and aahs’ from all three of us. The path takes you inland up to Breaclaich Reservoir and Dam, passing close by Creag Gharbh, which is the highest point of rough ground on the South East side of Loch Tay. If it had been a clear day we should have witnessed beautiful views of Ben Lawers. After stopping for a quick lunch break overlooking the reservoir we’re off again.
Up and over the top and the scenery opens up to everything we’d expected; huge areas of moor land shrouded by incredible mountains all around. Descending towards Ardeonaig and our first spectacular views of Loch Tay; all the while we’d been walking inland we’d covered the first third or so of Loch Tay. Once at Ardeonaig one of our girls had to be collected by the owners of our next B&B as her knee, which she had major surgery on last December, decided to cause her great discomfort. One thing to be aware of is that taxis do not come out to some of these remote locations. Fortunately we had all our lodging information to hand and they couldn’t have been more accommodating.
So with just the two of us now, we put on a bit of a spurt as we wanted to have a nice hot shower and there was promise of a rather special dinner venue. We arrived at our lodgings in Acharn just as the sun was setting. A quick spruce up and we were off out again, our table was booked for 8pm at the Taymouth Marina Restaurant. What an incredible meal we had; well we were on holiday.
Up bright and early and after a good breakfast and chat about the stunning views we were ready to move on. The next couple of days were much shorter and all three of us were raring to go. We’re blessed with a stunning start to the day, so I was dragging behind a bit trying to take some photos. The RRW takes you high above Kenmore, so the views looking back over Loch Tay and Kenmore are breathtaking. Taymouth Castle can be seen from way in the distance. This was the seat of the Breadalbane family up until 1920.
We stay quite high for most of this days walking, climbing over some incredible stiles to enable us to pass through the deer fencing. Once we reach the Birks o’ Aberfeldy we have to decide which path to take. We opted for the most direct path into Aberfeldy. We head straight to The Watermill and Homer; best known as an atmospheric bookshop, art gallery and coffee shop, to enjoy a well earned coffee and a late lunch. None of us can resist a book shop and we spent a lovely time perusing their shelves before finally heading to our next B&B. Once we’d dropped off our bags I headed back out towards the Birks o’ Aberfeldy and walked up the alternative path. I’m very glad that I did as I got to see the falls at their best; there are numerous viewing areas but the best has to be near the top where you’ll find verses from the famous song The Birks o’ Aberfeldy carved on a wooden plaque. This is also the path where you’ll see the bronze statue of Robert Burns.
We’re off bright and early on our final leg of the RRW, another short day for us, about ten miles. As we leave Aberfeldy the path takes us past Dewar’s World of Whisky, our timing was unfortunate as it was closed. Perhaps that was a good thing.
The path runs alongside the road for a bit but it’s not too long before you cut down to towards the River Tay, staying on the south bank. Gradually the path heads up towards the embanked trackbed of the old railway line, this takes us through to Grandtully.
Having crossed some open moorland and negotiated a boggy area, we then head into Fonab Forest. The weather’s closed in a bit, so we missed out on some of the spectacular views we’d read about. Suddenly there’s a clearing and we see the 3600 year old stone circle, Clachan an Diridh. Three of the stones are standing and the fourth lies flat in amongst them.
On leaving Fonab Forest we have to negotiate crossing the A9, a very busy, fast road. Not far now; this is where you have an option to divert and check out Pitlochry Festival Theatre, which is exactly what we chose to do. The programme at the Festival Theatre is extensive and well supported. We couldn’t find anything that suited all three of us so we opted to book a nice restaurant instead.
We got to the War Memorial which marked the end of The Rob Roy Way. An incredible five days taking in some of the beautiful scenery of Scotland.
The next day we take a train back to Glasgow and a friend gives us a lift back to our car. Time to head home and put some plans together for another adventure.