Day 256: Fortrose to Inverness

Distance: 15.79 miles

Ascent: 2032 feet

Weather: Sunny Spells and Showers

Accommodation: Hostel Inverness


I was so tired when I woke up and as today was shorter and the weather was meant to be miserable until 9ish I decided to not rush and slowly do some admin in bed, and then Janet and the Fortrose Café kindly made me a lovely breakfast. I think it was well gone 9 by the time I finally left and fortunately it was dry by now having been torrential rain only an hour before.

The coastal A road from Fortrose was very busy so I took the very handy dismantled railway path, that ran parallel and only 50m or so away, all the way to Avoch. As I was walking through Avoch a car suddenly pulled up and the woman asked if I was the guy doing the charity walk, she had heard about it through the internet and kindly gave a donation and got out to have a photo (I still feel like an idiot when I have my photo taken.)

From Avoch I decided to turn right and then join a track that would take me passed Castleton Farm and then around Ormond Castle, but on afterthought it would have been easier to carry on along the coast. This is because I actually dropped down to the coast just after Wood Hill through quite dense overgrowth and once on the shoreline the going was much easier. As I passed the woodland below Ord Hill, I passed the beginnings of a shelter being built, there was already a bench, and firepit with wind break and seemingly a structure ready to make a basic shelter to sleep under but at present no cover over it.

From here I followed an overgrown embankment to the edge of Munlochy, and after heading through a farm in the middle of the potato harvest I joined a busy road for a few hundreds meters before turning onto a farm track on the other side of the river. This part was quite fascinating passing a large Christmas tree farm, and the thing that surprised me is that the trees appear to be grown with the labels on them that are there when you buy them. They had lots of different varieties and sizes.

After a few miles on the track I briefly joined a road before joining woodland and farm track down to Kilmuir. I think I went as far towards the coast as I could but part of me thinks I could had used tracks and off piste to get a little bit further and closer to the coast but not much.

From Kilmuir I began heading along the beach before just shy of the Kessock Bridge I headed up and into Craigton. From Craigton I got on to the Kessock Bridge, this is a farily impressive bridge and was much busier that expected.

On the other side of the bridge I reached Inverness. Originally, I had planned to camp north of this bridge and then cross tomorrow and just skirt the very edge of Inverness seeing none of Inverness at all. But this seemed silly to me the other day as I thought I should see Inverness if I am this close to it, so I had decided to head into the centre of Inverness today. As it would not be possible to camp in centre of Inverness, I had decided to book into a cheap hostel.

Inverness felt like a big city to me after where I have been and it was very busy, quite a shock to the system. I reached the hostel and got everything charged up and caught up on some admin (even though I was in a bed last night arrived so late got no admin done). I am so sleepy (in fact fell asleep whilst typing this) so won’t be long till I sleep.

A short, simple day without too much rain.

charles compton