Day 2–15.8 miles hiked (Drymen to Rowardennan)
With a long day ahead of us, we got an earlier start. It’s not difficult to do in Scotland, with the high latitude and super early sunrises (4:30 a.m.ish). The scenery was increasingly more scenic as we climbed out of town. Soon we began walking along a dirt road within a dense evergreen forest. It was nearly as black as night in the forest just off the road, since the trees were so densely planted.
We eventually climbed Conic Hill which John dubbed as “sheep shit hill” since it was everywhere! The ratio of poop to sheep was a bit puzzling but we did our best to not step in every pile and stopped for lunch after we summited the hill (yep, surrounded by sheep feces!!). Hand sanitizer quickly became the most coveted item in our backpacks.
After lunch, we descended further to the edge of Loch Lomond and as luck would have it, there was a pub waiting for us! The kids enjoyed ice cream and card games while the adults had an afternoon brew–trail magic at its best!
We hiked along the edge of the lake for the better part of the afternoon, the trail undulating constantly. If we came across a beach, rock skipping ensued amongst the kids and dads.
Eventually the lakeside diversions weren’t as plentiful and the walk began feeling a bit more like a chore, especially with the company of midges (midges are like gnats that bite harder–not agreeable hiking companions!) The day was only supposed to amount to 14 miles but we ended up hiking 15.8 miles by the time we drug ourselves into Hotel Rowardennan.
Paige was a champ but by the end of the day she was hurting. She promptly planted herself on the hotel bed and vowed to never move again (until her hunger began to override her fatigue). We ate in the inn’s pub and hit the sack, knowing we had another long day ahead of us.