Useful websites, apps and books

Route Planning

Websites

Where’s the path – OS maps and aerial photography side by side – a very useful planning tool

Geograph – see photos along your planned route – a good way to get an idea of the terrain and scenery you may encounter

Walk Highlands – walking routes – mainly day routes but useful  if you are incorporating some hills

Core paths – particularly useful when trying to avoid stretches of road walking in lowland areas as it shows many new and adopted paths.

Books

Scottish Hill Tracks (Scotways) describes Scotland’s rights of ways and is a good place to start when planning you route.

Scotland by Chris Townsend (Cicerone) gives a comprehensive guide to all the mountain ranges in the Challenge area. Chris is the gear editor for TGO and a regular Challenger himself.

Hostile Habitats – Scotland’s Mountain Environments – Mark Wrightman is a guide for walkers to Scotland’s wildlife and landscapes.

The Munros, The Corbetts and The Grahams (Scottish Mountaineering Trust) give the most commonly used routes up Scotland’s hills.

Apps

Hill Lists – every hill list you could possibly need!

Accommodation

VisitScotland – useful for accommodation in general. Main Office 01387 245550 www.visitscotland.com or www.visitscotland.org

Scottish Independent Hostels – independent hostels www.hostel-scotland.co.uk

Hostelling Scotland –  (formerly Scottish Youth Hostels Association) Central Reservations 0345 293 7373 www.hostellingscotland.org.uk

Ault-na-goire – Janet & Alec Sutherland 01456 486711

Ballater Caravan Park 01339 755727 info@ballatercaravanpark.com

Braemar Caravan Park 01339 741373 info@braemarcaravansite.co.uk

Cougie Lodge Melanie Pocock 07773491262

Mar Lodge Parcels to: c/o The Rangers Office, Mar Lodge, Braemar, AB35 5YJ. Please note they do not offer accommodation or camping.

Montrose Campsite South Links Holiday Park, 03452 777778

The Park Hotel, John Street, Montrose, Angus DD10 8RJ 01674 663400 reservations@montrosepark.co.uk. Home to Challenge Control and venue for the Celebration Dinners.

Travel

Specific information for each start can be found on the start points page. Once you reach the east coast you can use motorised transport to report to Montrose so when planning your travel home you need to start from Montrose which has good rail links to Edinbugh, Glasgow and Aberdeen.

Traveline Scotland – website giving information on all forms of public transport. App also available.

National Rail Enquiries – information about rail services throughout the UK

Citylink and Megabus offer services to and from Scotland and to many start points.

Torridon Bus – This is run by DKM motors (01520 722682) and meets the afternoon train at Strathcarron.  It has a capacity of 16 and cannot be pre-booked.

Ferries – You may make an initial boat journey to reach another point on the coast, or cross, but not travel along, large bodies of water such as Loch Ness and Loch Linnhe. Possible crossings are listed below. These may need to be pre-booked Click here to see details of those used most regularly by Challengers.

Weather

Websites

Mountain Weather Information Service (MWIS) – detailed 3-day weather forecast for mountain areas

Met Office – the main website gives detailed 5-day forecasts – even for individual hills!

Apps

Mountain Weather – gives links to MWIS

BBC weather – daily and hourly forecasts

Met Office – daily and hourly forecast