I love the way this walk throws up little surprises, like tonight’s accomodation at SYHA Rowardennan, which turns out to be an old house almost directly on the shore of Loch Lomond, with giant picture windows in the common room that look straight out over the loch for some spectacular views of the changing colours of the sky, the water and the mountains as the sun sets. Plus, not only do they have free internet access for guests, the computer also uses Firefox, which is nice after a few weeks of IE only.

Today was a hard walk – the route looks pretty simple on the map, following the western side of Loch Lomond with only a few serious ascents and descents, but that couldn’t show that it’s here where the West Highland Way becomes more of a track rather than a path, following a quite narrow line. As this is one of the most popular stretches of it, it’s also quite eroded, and so much of your time is spent trying to navigate a way past exposed rocks and tree roots. Still, the views over the loch make it all worth it, as did the two wild goats I saw earlier this afternoon, looking for food around the loch side, but disappearing before I could get a photo of them.

My last hostel for a while – the next one is Melrose, sometime next week – and just one day left on the West Highland Way as I head down to Drymen tomorrow, before cutting off cross country towards Edinburgh.

Oh, and while I remember, thanks to Tim for the plug, and to him and everyone else who’s given, online and off, for the donations. If you haven’t given yet, it’s only a click away to do it.