first time hicking in Scotland August Any Tips.. ?

10:43 a.m. on May 15, 2015 (EDT)
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Heey people I'm  new to hicking and would like to introduce  myself. The name is Joshua I'm 23 y.o., I was born in the Missouri, US of A. Then moved to The Netherlands to study.

I a friend and I decided  to go Hicking in Scotland: from Williams fort down the road to Glassgow, to see how far we get. we've got around 40-50  pounds each on our backs. We'll be sleeping in a tent. But since this is my first hicking trip do you guys have any tips..? Is there anyone who's gone Hicking in Scotland before around August. ?? Anything I gotta keep in mind ..??

 

Thanks in advance !!! :D

Joshua.

12:02 p.m. on May 15, 2015 (EDT)
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Hi,


I hike in Scotland all the time. I presume you are doing the west highland way?


There are multiple things you should be aware of.

#1 Midges... annoying little black flies. You should get some bug repellant. The Lifeventure brand stuff works well and you should be able to buy it in Fort William at Cotswold Outdoor (really nice outdoor shop).

#2 There is a great little Thai cafe in Fort William, so if you like Thai food, seek it out, its on the main strip (ask a local, they will know). Best food I've had in Ft. William... all the rest was quite heavy for my tastes.

#3 You are carrying way too much. I would try to lighten that load or you probably wont make it all the way to Glasgow.

#4 The weather can be quite variable. You can have beautiful hot humid days..... followed by days of horrible cold chilling rain.... or you can experience it all in one day (multiple times)! Be prepared with good waterproofs.

If you have any specific questions, feel free to ask and I will do my best to answer.

What are you planning to do for water?

7:38 a.m. on May 16, 2015 (EDT)
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Heey Man awsome !!! :D yes hahah we are WHW !! :D okay so what do you recommend  clothing wise for 10 days hicking.  I was thinking 3 pair of sweatpants 2 vests a pair of shorts and 2 pair of jeans.

Also water we were thinking 2 liter  bottles  per man. And drink from ponds or lakes were possible or is that our naive'ity speaking :p  haha thanks TJ. !!!

4:26 a.m. on May 17, 2015 (EDT)
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sweatpants and jeans are pretty useless... Jeans are ok for when you are in town, but hiking in cotton pants in Scotland is like wearing a sponge... you will be hoping for great weather otherwise you will be soaked and miserable.


You should get some inexpensive quick drying synthetic pants. You can even buy those once you arrive at Fort William. Craghoppers make great pants which can often be found for around 20 GBP for the simplest models. One pair of long synthetic pants, and one pair of shorts should be enough for the hiking portion. Save the jeans for Glasgow.

As for water, there are plenty of areas with water.... but there are also lots of sheep and red deer around, as well as human traffic along the WHW, so you should have some form of water treatment. The tablets work fine if you dont mind the taste.

3:46 p.m. on May 17, 2015 (EDT)
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TJ has very sound advice--jeans and sweatpants are for car camping, not backpacking. On a 10-day hike I carry a pair of pants and a pair of shorts (and I'm always wearing one or the other). In cool weather, I may also pack fleece pants to sleep in (today, some sweatpants are actually fleece).

More importantly is what you are wearing on your torso. Your core needs to stay warm. A wicking t-shirt (100% polyster) and a fleece pullover would be ideal, along with a rain/wind layer and a warmth layer (down).

On the cheap:

A polyester shirt from any sporting goods store will work.

My shorts are either swim trunks or running shorts. Remember, you don't want cotton. That includes your underwear & socks.

Here is the list I usually provide new hikers before I take them out on a 2-7 day trip.



Clothing
Wool Socks/Hiking Socks (2 pair)
Sock Liners (2 pair)
Zip off pants—convert to shorts OR 1 pant & 1 short
Microbial Underwear (2 pair--can wear for 3-4 days at a time)
Polyester & Merino Wool T-shirts (2)
Sun Hat
Water/Wind proof Parka
Water/Wind proof Pants
midweight long underwear tops (synthetic)
midweight long underwear bottoms (synthetic)
Warmth layer top
Warmth layer bottom
Warm hat
Lightweight gloves (synthetic)
Bandanas

Food Tools
Food Sack (Figure 2lbs or 4,000calories per day of hard hiking) Backpacker's Stove
Stove Fuel
Cook Pot
Thermal Cup
Bowl or plate with sides
Spork or fork/spoon

"Essentials"
Backpack
Boots (pair) or "light hikers" (start breaking them in immediately)
Tent
Ground cloth
Sleeping Bag
Sleeping Pad
2 Water Bottles (liter)
Water Filter
Headlamp (extra batteries)
Pocket Knife
Matches, Lighter, or Spark Ignitor
Compass
Sunscreen, Sun Glasses (w/case), Lip Balm
Bug Repellent
Toilet Paper
Toilet Trowel
1st Aid Kit with blister treatment
Map
Compass
Tooth Brush, Paste, Floss/Picks

Personals
Personal Meds (perscriptions, over-the-counter)
Small towel (for bathing)
Journal (for personal insights and note taking)
pen
Contact Lens --Case, Back up Lenses, Solutions
Walking Stick/Trekking Poles
Gaiters
Pack Cover
Duct tape (small amount)
Camp shoes (hard-soled, in-camp alternatives to trail shoes)

Total Pack Weight (attempt to be under 35lbs)

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