The Best Countryside Winter Walking Routes in Scotland
Scotland is home to a stunning landscape of vast hills, mountains, woods and lochs. Much untouched, it is the perfect location to seek some unforgettable and awe-inspiring views. Immersed in the beautiful wilderness, it is the ideal escape for a winter getaway and time away from the bustling and sometimes overwhelming city life. Here at LOWA, we believe there are countless breath-taking walks to be enjoyed by a wide variety of abilities, with vast trails of varying terrain and distances. We have compiled a list of the less populated walks that will make the upcoming season a memorable one.
Remember to always keep an eye on weather reports and seek guidance from local advisors on the safety of walking in cold and snowy weather.
The Brough of Birsay and Earl’s Palace
A walk that lasts just under four miles, this is a fantastic way to appreciate the Scottish coast. Starting at the point of Buckquoy, it should take around two to two-and-a-half hours to complete. This splendid walk consists of footpaths through grass and sand as well as along a magical concrete tidal causeway. Of course, you must read up on tide times the Bough of Birsay can only be walked on within a couple of hours either side of low tide. Expect to see the beautiful Scottish cliffs and feel immersed in the rugged setting.
Rothiemurchus Forest and the Iron Bridge
This peaceful area of Scotland is the ideal place if you need a quiet stroll without going off-trail and would still like some reliable paths to follow. The area encompasses around 50km of maintained trails. The walking routes weave in and around the tranquil Rothiemurchus Forest, the lochs and also touches the base of the beautiful mountains local to the area. It is perfect if you would like to to see some wildlife such as red deer, red squirrels and pine martens. You can choose from three walking routes, depending on how far you would like to walk and the areas you would like to see. The Long Walk is roughly ten miles in length and will take around four to five hours to complete. Alternatively, there are two other shorter walks which are three miles in length and take around one to one-and-a-half hours to finish. They are the Lochan Mor Walk and the Loch an Eilein Walk.
The Luss Hills
Situated on the western side of Ben Lomond and Conic Hill, this walk can be thought of as a series of mounds which provide a healthy amount of trekking. It is nestled amongst stunning views of both the surrounding Arrochar Alps and hills in the direction of Helensburgh. A quiet part of Scotland, it can be enjoyed all by yourself as many walkers tend to opt for the more famous surroundings.
The Great Glen Way
Coasts of the Highlands
A breath-taking walk which not only absorbs the stunning Scottish coast but also weaves between three striking lochs, this should be high on the agenda. Stretching roughly 117km, the Great Glen Way is a truly magical experience. Beginning at Fort William, situated just below Ben Nevis, the trail will take you through the stunning scenery of Neptune’s Staircase to Loch Lochy, Loch Oich near Loch Ness in the North East and finally ending in Inverness. The final part between Drumnadrochit and Inverness is the most challenging due to the long distance.
Hopefully, we have inspired you to head to the beautiful Scottish landscape and experience its numerous walking opportunities. Remember to always take precautions in severe weather and rain and listen to the advice of local groups. If you are in need of some new gear for the upcoming season, LOWA has a wide selection of boots for both men and women, as well as having a significant range of hiking boots for wide feet. Take a look at our blog on why walking in winter is best for some extra motivation and make the most out of the coldest season of the year!