Mallaig To Knoydart – 35km, 1750m vertical in 6h 30min
I made this route as part of my Mallaig/Knoydart exploration project. 33% of the route is pathless and you are in the absolute wild Scotland on top of the hills.
It starts in Bracorina at the bridge, you can add extra 10km running from the Mallaig train station if you want! You follow a trail to Tarbet with amazing views of Loch Morar. If you are lucky you might see Morag, Nessies cousin!
In Tarbet you follow a path going behind the church house up the hill. You can go all the way to Kylesmorar and then steeply climb up and over the fence, but I now prefer to start climbing a bit quicker on the corner of the peninsula leaving Tarbet through the heather bushes. After maybe 200m of heather bashing you are going to jump over a waist high fence and that’s the hard work done! You follow the ridge and meander between rocks and ponds until you get far enough to drop down north to Sourlies. On the map attached at the top I dropped down too early and ended up bashing through the shoreline and very rough grounds. It is worth it continuing for a extra mile to the top of Sgurr nam Meirleach along the ridge and then dropping down to Sourlies. This will save a lot of time. Remember to aim for the low tide! IF you get cought there on a high tide you will have to add at least a mile to your journey around Sourlies Bothy.
From Sourlies Bothy it’s a good visible path along the shore. You cross the bridge and ruins and start climbing 550m up to the col. Once you’re at the top the views of Sgurr na Ciche and Knoydart are just amazing! Remember to take photos!
Here is only down now. A very long gentle descent on a technical path until you cross the next small bridge and go through the wee gorge. You will be now on a track that leads to Knoydart. Few extra short hills to conquer on your final section and you can enjoy a pint at the Old Forge in Inverie.
Remember to book a ferry crossing back from Inverie to Mallaig beforehand with Western Isles Cruises and don’t be late! The boat leaves sharp!