10.25.18 - 10.25.18 50 °F
We woke up this morning to classic Scotland weather, clouds, wind, mist, and rain...but we were not going to let that deter us. Our first stop was the Mountain Experience - just north of Ft. William. In the winter, it is a ski area - usually open from January to April, but the rest of the time it is used for mountain biking and hiking and folks taking the gondola to the top of the hill. The resort is situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty on Rannoch Moor and offers stunning views of the iconic Buachaille Etive Mor. In summer the centre offers chairlift rides, mountain biking (Downhill and XC), tubing, hill-walking, climbing, photography and great home cooked food in the panoramic log cabin cafe. In winter skiing, snowboarding, sledging and avalanche rescue training are available and the resort has both the longest and the steepest ski run in Scotland.
After some great Mac and Cheese (the Scots are into that) we headed back down the hill, and drove to Steall Falls. It is Scotland's second highest waterfall with a single drop of 120 metres (390 ft). The fall can be viewed from the path that runs through the Nevis Gorge, an area owned by the John Muir Trust which manages the area for its wilderness qualities. An Steall Bàn means "The White Spout" in Gaelic. The trail into the falls - quite rugged, is 1 km. I only made it about 3/4 of the way as I had the right footware on, but needed in hiking stick to make it the rest of the way. All was good though except for the flat tire that awaited us when we got back to the car. A very kind person (younger) from Southampton, helped us change the tire in the great Scottish mist.
Since we had a space saver spare tire, we headed to Ft. William to a tire repair facility that I found on Google. They were great. It turns out that we had to buy a new tire, since a probable pothole on the road to the falls - single lane - got the wall of the tire. After the tire repair we went into town walked around and visited St. Andrews Church before back to the Inn. We had a wonderful dinner with a couple from outside London and shared a bunch of stories from each side of the pond.