Backpacking in Scotland
Edinburgh Travel Blog› entry 1 of 2 › view all entries
In the summer holiday of 2009 together with tree other friends, I set out from Weeze Airport, Germany to Edinburg, Scotland. Everything went exceptionally well, so in no-time we were in Edinburg. We arrived a night, got to our hostel, dropped our stuff and went out to explorer Edinburg by night. Since we arrived quite late, it was about 23:00 or 0:00 all the pubs and bars were already closed, so after a short walk we decided to go to bed, since we had to get up early the next day.
The next day was a beautiful day, nice temperature and a clear sky so with our hopes up we set out on our journey. The first stop was the local supermarket to buy our supplies for the 8-9 days we had planned to hike. It turned out to be a massive amount of food! The next thing to do was to catch our bus which would take us to our train station. Like the rest of the day this all went without trouble and before we knew it we arrived at our train station and after a 20 min. wait our train arrived. It was still early, around 12 o'clock, but this didn't stop some girls, who were on the train, from drinking a bottle of wine, which made them quite noisy. Anyway this couldn't get our spirits down and we enjoyed the beautiful Scottish landscape as we sat in the train.
When we arrived at our final stop we had to wait for the bus, but that took too long so we decided to take a cab. Finally we were at the starting point of our 9 day hiking trail. So with the sun shining down on our heads we headed out. And it was really a beautiful journey from the first step onward. As we made progress the people around us grew thinner and nature grew wilder, just the way we liked it.
After a walk of 3-4 hours it was getting near the evening so we decided to look for a camping spot. We found one over the next hill, a nice spot between to hills with small streams. So we dropped our gear and made camp, explored the area and just enjoyed the view and location. After a while we decided to make diner, soup and mashed potato, which somehow tasted great, sat around a while and just enjoyed the sense of freedom.
But during the evening clouds appeared and a heavy fog set in. Being in Scotland we didn't think much of it and so after a while we went to bed.
During the night a storm broke loose, but luckily our tents were strong enough. The rain however kept on coming and it was still raining the next day. When it finally stopped we set out without our backpacks and made a morning walk. The fog was really heavy so we decided to stay on a trail. After the little walk we packed our tents and set out again. Since the fog was so heavy we had to depend on our map reading skills. We set out a course we all agreed on and started walking. The trip included a quite steep and long climb down hill and since it rained so much, all was slippery. But we were still quite cheerful so we started descending. After a intense climb we took a breather, and again it started raining. Luckily one of our friends had a ridiculous raincoat thing, so that kept our spirits up.
After some time though one of my friends was beginning to doubt the path we took and checked the map again, it turned out we had completely walked in the wrong direction. Standing in the rain we decided what to do.
Because it already late in the afternoon and we were all soaked to the bone we decided to go back to our starting point and find cheap place to spend the night. We also made this choice because we couldn't deploy our tents in the rain since everything would get wet, inside and outside, and we could check the weather forecast. So we found a nice hostel were we could stay and checked the weather forecast, which was bad...For the next ten days it would be heavy rain showers, heavy fog, and moderate to heavy thunderstorms, not the ideal weather for a nice vacation in the middle of Scotland. For the first time this vacation, we were all down, very down.
After a refreshing and warming shower we made diner, sat around a bit and went to bed. We decided to spent a couple of days in Edinburgh so that we at least made something of our vacation and then went home, a week sooner than we planned. Edinburgh though was a great city and we had a wonderful time there, a city I really enjoyed and I am certain I will go there again. But after three days in Edinburg we left on the fourth day back to the Netherlands....