Scottish Highlands in 72 hours

Wed, Apr, 27, 2016

Estimated reading time 3 minutes

From rugged, snow-capped peaks through to picturesque glens and roaring rivers, it’s tough to take a wrong turn in the Scottish Highlands.

Whether you’re a hardened climber or simply an admirer of epic views, the landscapes Highlands have something for everyone. In this 72 Hours in the Scottish Highlands piece, you’ll sample some of the delights the region has to offer.

Loch Crinan

My 72 hour journey began on the shores of Loch Crinan. After a night (and morning!) of blizzards, I unzipped my tent to this view. The mighty Highlands plastered in snow and a single house, standing strong amongst the howling winds.

Glen Etive

Where better to head next than Glen Etive, made famous by James Bond and co. in the blockbuster Skyfall. The road through the Glen offers sweeping views of nearby soaring mountains. I was lucky enough to bump into a few red deer along the way for company!

Buachaille Etive Mor

Easily the most iconic mountain in the UK, Buachaille Etive Mòr sent - quite literally - shivers down my spine. On this day, a biting -15c windchill on Rannoch Moor made for tough conditions but only added to the drama of the place.

After winding through the Moor and down through the village of Glencoe, I headed north for Fort William, home to the UK’s tallest mountain, Ben Nevis. Terrible conditions meant I had to abandon my climb but not to be deterred I stumbled across this old wharf; there was a prevailing mysticism about the air this day.

Eilean Donan

Continuing the road north to Skye, it’s an absolute must to stop at Eilean Donan. This particular shot was taken on the first dry morning I’d had in 7 days; it was more than worth the wait.

Silgchan

Crossing the bridge to Skye, I could have never hoped for a more beautiful place. The Isle of Skye is - in my opinion at least - the jewel in the Highlands’ crown. The roaring Silgachan River greeted me on my first stop, with the mighty Cuillin Hills as the backdrop.

Old Man of Storr

One thing that absolutely astounded me about Skye was the light. This time of year the sun stays so low, resulting in all these magical shadows and piercing golden rays. My experience at the Old Man of Storr was something that’ll live with me forever.

Quiraing

To be honest, the Quiraing felt more like a distant planet than earth. The other worldly-like terrain is a mix of little ‘Lochans’, boggy ground, brown heathland and scattered rocks. Aside from the occasional brave hiker, I barely saw a soul at all this day. My idea of perfection.

Neist Point

Locals call Neist Point ‘the end of the world’ and it isn’t difficult to see why. This shot belies the true conditions, with a 60mph gale whipping up from the sea below. The result was astounding; the sky lit up a fantastic orange and with the clouds moving so fast, it was as if the world was on fire.

Silgachan

After looping around the top of Skye, I made sure stop off at the Silgachan river again. Boy, I’m glad I did. As cheesy as it sounds, this really was an “Explosion in the Skye” - I’m yet to see anything like this!

As a landscape photographer, I’m proud to work with GOBAG who make travelling (especially with a lot of camera gear!) so much easier.

If you’re interested in seeing more of my work - from New Zealand to Iceland, Scotland to Switzerland - please take a look at my website and Instagram, both listed below.

-George

www.georgetheexplorer.com

www.instagram.com/georgetheexplorer