Ardnamurchan Area

Key information: Ardnamurchan Area

  • A host of great walks in this wild, sea-girt, loch-sprinkled area of west of Fort William and north of Mull.

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Vital Statistics

  • Length: Depends on walk
  • Maximum Altitude: 885m
  • Level of Difficulty: Variable
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WALK SUMMARY

Rough, wild, sea-girt, loch-sprinkled Ardnamurchan lies half way up the west of Scotland just north of Mull and west of Fort William. The area covers both the peninsula of that name and the Moidart, Sunart, Ardgour and Morvern areas inland from it.

The Peninsula itself is long and wild, with Mull and the endless sea Loch Sunart to its south and the open sea and various isles on the horizon to its north. North-east of Loch Sunart is the long and very slender freshwater Loch Shiel, famous for the ground at its upper end where Bonnie Prince Charlie raised his standard in the 1745 Rebellion.  

To the north of Loch Shiel is Moidart; between Loch Shiel’s eastern banks and Loch Sunart is the Sunart area, with Ardgour to its east, out to Loch Linnhe's western banks. To their south is Morvern, with Kingairloch to its east.

This is magnificent landscape: not Scotland’s highest mountains, but a remote land of fine peaks and high moorland sprinkled with tarns and intersected by long lakes, with huge views, usually including at least glimpses of sea and hints of islands. Wildlife is commensurately interesting.

Ardnamurchan is host to a multitude of great walks, which vary from bagging view-rich peaks to shorter walks in special places. Almost every glen is a gem: you need do no more than have a good study of the map to find a fabulous walk, often improbably empty of humankind. There are numerous lakes and oddities to check out, too.

Ardnamurchan Peninsula: this long peninsula is famously beautiful, a sublime combination of mountains, sea, lakes and ancient oak forest (known as Atlantic oakwoods). There is only one road along the peninsula, and that single track most of the way, so getting around is is a slow process, which contributes to its continuing remoteness.

There are two very enjoyable coastal walks at the far end of the peninsula. Both start at the little seaside village of Portuairk:

Ardnamurchan Point is often called the most westerly point of the British mainland, although this is not quite true. You can walk a 6km circuit to the point from Portuairk, heading out by the sea to take in a beautiful sandy beach, then returning inland. See more at https://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/fortwilliam/ardnamurchanpoint.shtml

Sanna Beaches: north-east of Portuairk are the stunning Sanna beaches, sandy little coves among rocky outcrops, and long stretches of pale sand further out. A variety of roughish paths lead across hillsides thick with low bushes, so you can choose the length of your exploration. You won't be disappointed. 

Ben Hiant: as the highest hill on the peninsula (at a lordly 527m), Ben Hiant has remarkable all-round views of the long, winding, island-sprinkled Loch Sunart and the Sound of Mull (and Mull itself) on its southern side, the open sea with the Outer Hebrides lining the western horizon, the Small Isles and Skye to its north, and the length of the hilly, grassy peninsula in both directions.

Silver Walk: Castle Tioram is a grim little place in a staggeringly beautiful location, on its islet in Loch Moidart. The approximately 6km Silver Walk heads off from it, a truly beautiful path which winds along just above the rocky shore of the loch, below and sometimes across the shoreside cliffs, through gorgeous mixed woodland, towards the loch head near Ardmolich. If you want to make a circuit of it, you can turn to climb the hillside above and swing back on a choice of old paths.

Moidart: lies north of Loch Shiel.

 (We aim to develop this description – all thoughts and photos welcome!)

Sunart: Sunart lies directly inland from the peninsula, to the south of Loch Shiel.

Beinn Resipol: this superb 846m peak sits between slender Loch Shiel and the long sea-loch Loch Sunart, so has huge and beautiful views which extend to the island-speckled sea. It can be approached from various directions.

Ardgour: Ardgour lies to the east, out to the shores of long Loch Linnhe, which separates the area from the bulk of the Scottish land mass.

Garbh Bheinn of Ardgour: this is one of the finest walks in the area, a rough but superb 885m mountain looming over Loch Linnhe.

Stob Coire a’Chearcaill: (We aim to develop this description – all thoughts and photos welcome!)

Sgurr Domhnuill: the highest mountain in Ardgour.  A long, rough, in places steep, but beautiful and wild 18km climb and return.   (We aim to develop this description – all thoughts and photos welcome!)

Beinn na-h-Uamha: (We aim to develop this description – all thoughts and photos welcome!)

Sgurr na h-Eachianne: This view-laden mountain sits immediately above the north side of the Corran narrows (imagine the views across Loch Linnhe to Ben Nevis and Glen Coe), just above the village of Corran so accessible from the Fort William shore. It is linked to the higher (if less dramatic) Druim na Sgriodain by a ridge, so both are very baggable. More at the excellent https://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/fortwilliam/sgurr-na-h-eachainne.shtml  

Morvern: is in the south, between Loch Sunart and the sound of Mull.

(We aim to develop this description – all thoughts and photos welcome!)

Kingairloch: lies east of Morvern on the northern shores of Loch Linnhe.

(We aim to develop this description – all thoughts and photos welcome!)

See the excellent https://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/fortwilliam/ardnamurchan.shtml  for lots of ideas.

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We want to give you more on this special area. ALL IDEAS AND PHOTOS WELCOME!

Other accounts: share your experiences

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PRACTICAL INFORMATION

We have a lot of helpful practical information and tips about this walk, covering everything from the best books and maps, to timing and weather, geting there, possible problems, whether you need a guide and where to find them, and useful websites. This section is only open to members.

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Safety and problems: All walks have inherent risks and potential problems, and many of the walks featured on this website involve significant risks, dangers and problems. Problems of any sort can arise on any walk. This website does not purport to identify any (or all) actual or potential risks, dangers and problems that may relate to any particular walk.

Any person who is considering undertaking this walk should do careful research and make their own assessment of the risks, dangers and possible problems involved. They should also go to “Important information” for further important information.

Anyone planning an expedition to this place should see further important information about this walk.

Safety and problems: All walks have inherent risks and potential problems, and many of the walks featured on this website involve significant risks, dangers and problems. Problems of any sort can arise on any walk. This website does not purport to identify any (or all) actual or potential risks, dangers and problems that may relate to any particular walk.

Any person who is considering undertaking this walk should do careful research and make their own assessment of the risks, dangers and possible problems involved. They should also go to “Important information” for further important information.

OTHER ACCOUNTS
share your experiences

Add your experiences, suggestions and photos. We would be delighted to receive your writing and ideas (which will be attributed appropriately where published).

Anyone planning an expedition to this place should see further important information about this walk.

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