Fort Augustus to Drumnadorchit

Wood at Inchnacardoch

Entering forest path at Inchnacardoch close to Fort Augustus

The route leaving Fort Augustus starts from the foot of the locks at the swing bridge over the canal. Set off west on the A82 then quickly bear to the left climbing up above the road before bearing right. Just before the road merges with the A82 turn to the left at the Three Bridges B&B.

The route now climbs through a pine wood before turning to the north and follows the western shore of Loch Ness

The Way is now running parallel to the western bank of the Loch but at a varying height as it passes along forest track. Most of this route is now common with the Great Glen Cycle Route to a point just short of Invermoriston.

(By watching out for the waymarkers the walker can easily pick up these areas of route separation.)

Loch Ness

Loch Ness from pathway just prior to Allt na Criche

Loch Ness at Portclair

North across Loch Ness and Portclair.

After the Allt na Criche forest car park the track has a constant but gradual climb. This often affords attractive views over the Loch and to Beinn a Bhacaidh.

Just south of Invermoriston the forest track starts to turn to the west into Glen Moriston. There are glimpses of the community below but it will be some time yet before the route does a sharp "U" turn and descends into the valley and a minor road into Invermoriston.

Loch Ness at Portclair

Across Loch Ness to Foyers

Ruskich Wood looking south over Loch Ness as the Way ascends on a Zig Zag path

Loch Ness at Portclair

This next section of the way from Invermoriston to the old fort at Grotaig is certainly the most demanding of all sections. There are two significant ascents, the first out of Invermoriston then the longer and greater ascent from Alltsigh. The rewards on a clear day are spectacular, looking down on the Loch some 900 feet below.

The Way descends to the area of an Iron Age fort near Grotaig. At this point the way diverges from the line of the Loch and heads in a more north westerly direction and inland to Drumnadrochit. After one last climb the way emerges onto a single track road and crosses a moorland which is at approximately 800 feet above sea level.

Before the road starts a steep descent into Lewiston the way set off to the left along a forest track.


Road from Balbeg to Drumnadrochit with Carn Ban and Sron Dubh in background

River Coillie

River Coillie flowing NE towards Urquhart Bay and Loch Ness

The forest route as it meets the River Coillie turns right along a track. This is a commonly used horse riding area. The track runs alongside the river before a very short section of tarred road to the junction of the A82 at Lewiston.

Drumnadrochit is now only a few minutes walk away and there is pavement all the way to the village centre.

Since the Great Glen Way has been slightly inland and to the west of Loch Ness the walker will have missed Urquhart Castle which stand high above the shore at the corner with Urquhart Bay.

If time permits it is well worth travelling out to this castle and visitor attraction.

Urquhart 1

Urquhart Castle on the banks of Loch Ness

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