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GAIRLOCH, LOCH MAREE, LOCH BROOM AND LOCH EWE NC500 EXCURSION

Wester Ross, in the North West Highlands of Scotland has some of the finest coastal and mountain scenery in the UK, stretching from Lochcarron in the south to Ullapool in the north and,

located only an hour or two from Inverness, capital of the highlands with all transport links to access this region, easily accessible by car, motorcycle, ranked as one of the real contenders for a truly great biking country, perfect for those wishing to get away

from it all, with amazing scenery, diverse countryside and thousands of miles of quiet yet stunning roads.

The weather is not always great but the ride and your visit will make it well worth it, here you will find towering mountains, sandy beaches galore, sea and hill lochs, rich forests and wild open moorland, fine beaches, sheltered sea lochs, meandering woodland paths and a couple of very good sea watching sites nearby.

From Gairloch you take the A832 through Charlestown, Kerrysdale, past Loch Bad on Sgalaig, Sattadale, past Loch Maree, whatever the weather, the views are just spectacular, here you will find Beinn Eighe with a woodland walk with amazing views over Loch Maree and the surrounding countryside.

Carry on the A832 through Talladale, Letterewe, Taagan and Anancaun.

The main village nestles along the North East shoreline of Loch Gair along with the village of Achnasheen a wild isolated village that was at one time a drovers' stop where cattle were driven to market from the surrounding areas, Kinlochewe at the head of Loch Ewe, renowned for its geological features the most famous of which, the Moine Thrust that runs through Kinlochewe and Glen Torridon, Gairloch the village is the largest in Wester Ross and one of the most popular, Out to the west is Loch Gairloch and the Inner Minch with the Isles of Rona, Skye, Longa and the Western Isles on the horizon, offering the visitor some awesome sunsets and sunrises,

to the east beyond Loch Maree is one of Scotland last great wilderness areas, the Fisherfield Forest, and to the south the views of the peaks of Flowerdale and Shieldaig and the majestic Torridons, the village of Poolewe is situated at the head of Loch Ewe around the River Ewe which drains into Loch Ewe from Loch Maree.

Home to the Great Wilderness Challenge, an annual gruelling and endurance event for charity with a 25 mile, a 13 mile and a 7 mile route, with over 500 participants taking part every year and growing, the event to date has raised over £3.1 million for charity, the village of Aultbea is home of the Loch Ewe Distillery, the smallest distillery in Scotland, and a NATO base for large naval ships and submarines to come inshore to refuel, the village of Laide offers views of the Summer Isles and Gruinard Island and the mountains beyond.

Kinlochewe lies some two miles south east of the head of Loch Maree.

The A832 from Gairloch follows the south west side of the loch before passing through Kinlochewe, past The Heights of Kinlochewe, a circular walk that winds up to the eventually view Mount Siloch from Loch Fada, then past the small hamlet of Leckie, the lands of Leckie were Crown Property until the reign of Robert the Bruce. The oldest title deeds are dated between 1352 and 1359, during which the lands of Wester Leckie were transferred from the Crown to Malcolm de Leky who was a descendant of the Earl of Lennox.

Easter Leckie passed through a number of hands, and was not transferred to the Leckies of Leckie until 1617, when both Easter and Wester Leckie came into the possession of Alexander Leckie, by that time it is thought that Old Leckie House had been built on Wester Leckie, the A832 then enters Glen Docherty on route to Achnasheen past loch Chroisg a long 3 mile long, open loch holding both pike and perch with bank fishing only, in the winter months freezing mists gather on the loch causing some of the lowest temperatures recorded in all of Scotland.

From Achnasheen follow the A832 past Loch Achanalt part of many lochs of the River Conon system in this region including Loch Ussie, Loch Achonachie, Loch Luichart, Loch Garve and Loch Glascarnoch. All of these lochs contain pike, and can generally be fished for just a few pounds per day with permits available through local outlets or estate offices.

Continue on to Grudie, Lochluichart to Corston at the junction take the A835 to Garbat, Inchbae, Lubfeam, Aultguish, to Loch Glascarnoch were you will find Beinn Liath Mhor a'Ghiubhais Li, a rounded Corbett walking from Loch Glascarnoch with fine views from the summit.

Carry on past Loch Glascarnoch on the A835 past Loch Droma, a man made reservoir

the Sgurr Mor from Loch Droma is a walking route up Sgurr Mor is a circuit up over Beinn Liath Mor Fannaich, on to the pointed summit of Sgurr Mor and down over Meall a Chrasgaidh.

Continue on the road to Lochdrum, Braemore, Auchindream, Inverbroom one of the most beautiful Glens on the west coast, half a mile from the head of Loch Broom and 8 miles from the idyllic fishing town of Ullapool and Inverael with the Lael Forest Garden and forest walk, by Lochbroom.

From Loch Broom return to the junction and take the A832 to Dundonnell through Camusnagaul, Badbea, past Little Loch Broom Drunamuck, Rireavach and

Badluchrach, to mungasdale on the A832, this region is an area of outstanding natural beauty, here you will find some spectacular mountains, whether they are Munros, Corbetts, Grahams or mere hills, the Fannaichs, Sgurr Mhor, Beinn Dearg and the great An Teallach for the more adventurous Strathvaich and Strathrannoch are about 20 miles from Broomview, which form the main access for the Corbett, Beinn a' Chaisteil [Strath Vaich], and the Grahams, Meall a' Chaorainn [Easter Ross] and Carn Loch nan Amhaichean, even when the weather is not so bright and sunny, there is 

plenty to enjoy. For example, the spectacular Corrieshalloch Gorge and the Falls of Measach are especially fine after a wet spell in the winter, or when the snows have melted, there is a lot of walking & photography in and around the local area and plenty of wildlife-watching both inland and loch or sea for eagles, seals, otters and pine martins.

Explore the amazing rocks and landscapes along the Rock Route as you travel through the Geopark.

The North West Highlands Geopark is a community company limited by guarantee and a charity in Scotland.

The board comprises 7 community directors, one from each of the community councils within the Geopark who work alongside the other office bearers, directors and staff.

The North West Highlands Global Geopark hosts a wide range of rock formations covering two thirds of the Earth’s history, each rock type inspires its own distinctive landscape of world class quality and significance, with stunning mountain landscapes, sandy beaches, ancient settlements, and remote communities.

The North West Highlands Geopark is one of 68 partners in the European Geoparks Network (EGN). Established in 2000, the EGN aims to protect geodiversity, to promote geological heritage and support sustainable economic development primarily through the development of geological tourism.

From Mungasdale continue on the A832 to Little Gruinard, past Gruinard Bay, trough Laide, Drumchork, past Loch Braid Luachraidh, through Tuirnaig, Londubh, along Loch Ewe on the A832 past Loch Tallaidh back to Gairloch.

Category: NC500 3 months ago
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Created 3 months ago
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Min Elevation
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Total Distance
168.68 km
Max Elevation
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Total Time
0h 00m 00s
Total Elevation Gain
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Way Points
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Total Elevation Loss
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Track Points
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# Elevation Part Distance Distance Speed Part time Heart Rate
Gairloch IV21 2BS, UK
1 Icon 16px Red S 0 m 0 km 0 km 0 m/s N/A N/A
Tournaig, Achnasheen IV22 2LH, UK
2 Icon 16px Red 0 m 9.92 km 9.92 km 0 m/s N/A N/A
Little Gruinard, Achnasheen IV22 2NG, UK
3 Icon 16px Red 0 m 9.22 km 19.15 km 0 m/s N/A N/A
Dundonnell, Garve IV23 2QR, UK
4 Icon 16px Red 0 m 15.1 km 34.25 km 0 m/s N/A N/A
Gorstan, Garve IV23 2PX, UK
5 Icon 16px Red 0 m 38.57 km 72.82 km 0 m/s N/A N/A
Achnasheen IV22 2EE, UK
6 Icon 16px Red 0 m 23.15 km 95.97 km 0 m/s N/A N/A
Kinlochewe, Achnasheen IV22 2PB, UK
7 Icon 16px Red 0 m 13.43 km 109.39 km 0 m/s N/A N/A
Talladale, Achnasheen IV22 2HL, UK
8 Icon 16px Red 0 m 14.26 km 123.65 km 0 m/s N/A N/A
Kerrysdale, Gairloch IV21 2AL, UK
9 Icon 16px Red 0 m 9.69 km 133.34 km 0 m/s N/A N/A
Charlestown, Gairloch IV21 2AY, UK
10 Icon 16px Red 0 m 2.11 km 135.45 km 0 m/s N/A N/A
Gairloch IV21 2BS, UK
11 Icon 16px Red E 0 m 1.97 km 137.42 km 0 m/s N/A N/A
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