I did this over 5 days, combining Days 1 and 2 into a single day. The word of the week was “wet”! I had good weather only on the morning of Day 4, the rest varied between grey and pouring! This is a lovely trail, the days are not too long, and can be completed well inside the published durations, eg it only took 3 hours to get from Crieff to Comrie, but I guess that allows time for diversions and sightseeing if you wished.
Day 1 is pretty gentle, I took lunch in Comrie, before doing Day 2 route onto St Fillans. The climb up Glen Boltachan was a bit boring through the conifers, but once out of the woods at the top the view opens up magnificently.
Day 3 starts along the disused railway to Lochearnhead, and was very wet and muddy, with sections of loose gravel, which made the going unexpectedly hard. The route ends at Balquhidder, but I had trouble booking a B&B, and there is nowhere to eat in Balquhidder itself, so I stayed in Strathyre. This keeps Day 3 roughly the same length, but adds 3 miles onto Day 4, however taking the “back road” from Strathyre to Balquhidder is a nice stroll through mixed woodland.
The climb up Kirkton Glen is lovely, and the only time in the week I had some nice weather, which naturally changed as soon as I went over into Glen Dochart, however the views are spectacular, including a very snowy Ben More. The descent here was very wet, but not muddy or boggy, just the rain pouring off the hills.
Day 5 back to St Fillans was rain all the way, which is a shame as Glen Beich is spectacular, if very wet underfoot. Day 6 suffered from a dismal morning before easing off after lunch, nonetheless the walking was lovely, especially between Crieff and Comrie Croft, where it would have been rude not to stop for cake!
A final pretty leg along the Earn back into Crieff and I was complete.
Overall, I enjoyed this fine week’s walk: days not too long or overly strenuous, plenty of places to stop for cake, just make sure your boots are waterproof!
Submitted by: Mark Radford