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Here and Now I'm a photographer and these journals are a combination of transcripts from a contemporary diary, and writing on reflection. With each journal there are accompanying images, the focus of any of my trips.

Planning

UNITED KINGDOM | Friday, 11 July 2014 | Views [277]

For me the planning stage of a trip is almost as great as the trip itself.  Trawling over maps with a highlighter and permi pen, making kit lists, then making more kit lists without all the stuff you don't really need etc etc.  

Scotland is one of my favourite places in the world.  The added bonus of it being within a days a train journey or drive up the motorway makes it even more appetising.  Previously whenever I've been I've aimed for a particular place or area; the Cullins for climbing, the Cairngorms in the winter, Glencoe for the three sisters, and what strikes me looking back, is just how different all of these places feel.  If you start at Carlisle and drive to Uig on Skye, you could be forgiven for thinking you'd travelled through several different countries, from the undulating lowlands, to the serenity of Loch Lomond with the Trossachs in the distance, then onto Rannoch Moor; bleak and desolate, framed by the foreboding peaks of the west highlands. Then past Fort William, through lush forrest and across the Skye bridge and then all of a sudden the colours are different, the landscapes feels wilder, more weather-beaten with a purplish hue to the light.  

Many people in my experience have a misconception that to see amazing things you have to travel to the far side of the world, and of course at the ends of the earth lie wonders, but so too are they on your doorstep.  

For this trip I want to immerse myself in these different landscapes, so a bimble from Glasgow to Fort William will take me through some incredibly varied surroundings, terrain and of course weather.  The West Highland Way offers a straight forward way of achieving this.  Plenty of scope for vantage points and best of all, away from busy roads and larger towns.  

So with a pack weight down to 25kgs, a case of memory cards, a wide angle and a medium telephoto prime (oh and a lifetime supply of insect repellent that inevitably won't have any effect), the journey begins.  

Post Script; After years of sleeping in a bivi under a tarp with my head on my boots, I am now a proud owner of a 1 man tent and a travel pillow.  My life has changed for the better!

Tags: scotland, trekking, west highland way

 

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