Distance: 35,8 km (22,2 mi) for a total of 1652,8 km (1026,9 mi)
Ascent (ca.): 320 m (1050 ft)
Weather: Overcast in the morning, getting muggy, sunny and very warm in the afternoon
The first half of the day was the continuation of yesterday: still the canal with hardly changing views and fatiguing walking on a flat, hard surface. In Kirkintilloch I took a short detour into the town centre for a second breakfast and buying some chocolate to secure the supply with this essential provision for the next days.
Already on the way into town I had noticed this sign, but only on my way back to my planned track I really looked at it. I don’t know if the bridge is really unique, but it’s surely a rare setup:
On the junction of the canal with the trail I wanted to use to connect with the West Highland Way I was presented with more detailed information than I had expected.
Unfortunately, the underfoot conditions didn’t improve on this trail compared to the towpath. So it was again earphones and some music to see me through this stretch. And I liked this train very much.
I walked the West Highland Way before, in 2007, and was wondering what I would recognise. I had a dim recollection of fields and the Glengoyne distillery which were confirmed. I didn’t remembered the road parts but that the weather was equally sunny and warm.
I made sure I reached the campsite as early as possible to secure a good pitch as the site is known to get crowded. Possibly I overtook some of the people now pitched here when I passed the major refreshment stop about 7 miles from the start of the WHW.
Despite the campsite being outside of Drymen I walked into town for something to eat and drink. First some guys at the bar took an interest in my walk and wished me luck on my way. After having eaten I got into a chat with Andy and Ewan at the next table. They are walking the WHW this year after having done the Rob Roy Way last year. Andy belongs to the mountain rescue team around Schiehallion, which gave us sufficient subjects to talk about. Both assured me that they would never be able to do a walk like this although I’m sure they could. But it’s certainly nice to hear people pay respect for something you do 🙂
Tomorrow I have to make sure that I get an early start to avoid walking in the crowd from the campsite all day. I’ll get a better view of Loch Lomond then this first glimpse in the evening.