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All things hiking News

Coming up to Scotland in 2021?

Post COVID travel is not going to look the same as in 2019. There’s no getting away from it: this pandemic has brought about massive lifestyle changes, some of which could be around for some time to come.

Though there has been a massive vaccination programme, through which most if not all the main “at risk” groups will have been covered by mid April, there will still be an element of risk for us all when we exit our lockdown bubbles. We’re all getting just a tad fed up of seeing the same 4 walls now; but caution will still be the name of the game, even when we’re given the go ahead to go a bit further afield. So it’s worth remembering that there will still be a few restrictions in place, even for guided walking holidays and trips in the outdoors.

For at least the initial stages of coming out of lockdown (Spring 2021) social distancing rules are likely to remain. It’s not completely clear at time of writing exactly what these will look like when it comes to the hospitality industry or guided group exercise but outdoor group classes have already started again (March 2021) as have club social bike rides, so it looks promising for Scot Mountain Holidays activities. However, we would recommend that all guests make sure that they bring face coverings for any occasions where it may be necessary for us to temporarily be in closer proximity. We’d also recommend carrying a small bottle of hand sanitizer in your pack to cover any possible emergencies. We will have extra hand sanitizer available and a dispenser is installed in the van.

When we stop for breaks, try to make sure you maintain distance between yourself and other members of the group and don’t share food around.

We’ve had to use face coverings for a year or so now. They’re almost a part of daily life when you leave the house. Signs encouraging face coverings are everywhere.

We don’t expect face coverings to be worn while hiking. Social distancing is more than enough while out – and comes naturally as we all have our own pace. However, they will remain necessary while we’re in transit. In other words both in the bus and while moving around our home base face coverings will remain necessary for the foreseeable future.


Something we’ve all become accustomed to over the past year – frequent hand washing and sanitiser supplied everywhere. We recommend carrying a small container of sanitiser on the walks. You may be unable to avoid touching or close contact on occasion. Personally I recommend moisturiser too. All this soap and sanitiser takes out your natural skin oils and leaves your hands dry and itchy.


This is such an important one at the moment. Each of the 4 home nations having taken slightly different routes into and out of lockdown. Therefore it is so important to stay up-to-date with the post Covid travel rules. For example, no date has yet been confirmed (29.03.21) for the resumption of travel between Scotland and England. All we have been offered is a date (26.04.21) for travel across Scotland. We’ll just have to keep our eyes open after Easter and see what changes (if any) are made to the restrictions. Of course, we now have the Scottish Election complicating the post-Covid plans and government is currently in recess pending the election results at the beginning of May.

We’ve taken care of this one for you. None of the places we’ll be taking you will be overrun with visitors. It’s rare to spot other walkers, even in the distance, on many of Andy’s routes. When we say we’ll take you off the beaten track, we really mean it.



And of course, don’t forget once you do make it up here – we all have to be responsible when we go out to enjoy nature.

post COVID travel

Further reading

What will travel look like in a post COVID world?

Travel trends after coronavirus

How Scotland and England plan to resume travel, camping etc




How to work from home

We work from home every day. For the entire time in which we have been running Scot Mountain Holidays our home has been our business. However, this is an unusual blog post for us, due to the unusual circumstances in which we find ourselves at the moment. Normally we don’t look so much behind the scenes at working aspects of Scot Mountain Holidays. But perhaps now the time has come to share with you our tips for working from home – one side of our business we don’t usually boast about. As you’d expect from a small business like ours, we work from home. However, to complicate matters further our home is also our business. We’ve had to struggle for years with balancing home and work but now we’ve also got to add in the home schooling complication. We thought we might share some of our tips with you – though we realise some will be more difficult to adhere to than others.

During your designated working hours

1. Set targets:

Make sure you take some time first thing in the morning or last thing at night to make a list of what you’d like to accomplish. It’s difficult to stay really motivated right now when there doesn’t appear to be an end in sight to the restrictions placed on our lives by the government, but it will come to an end. Will life have turned around completely by then? It’s doubtful. I have no doubt that when we can, we’ll get back to the adventures we hoped to have this year.

2. Keep to a timetable

we all need structure in our lives. If we drift aimlessly right now, all we’re going to accomplish is being up to date on Facebook and other social networks and chatting endlessly online.

3. Avoid distractions

during your working hours (whatever you designate as your work time – doesn’t now have to be a 9 – 5 day) don’t be tempted to read the news, watch TV/Netflix/Amazon Prime etc, go on your social channels to take a break. Before you know it, half the day will have disappeared and you’ll not have accomplished any of the tasks you set yourself.

4. Create a workspace for yourself

over the years we’ve had a few different work setups. In the very beginning, when a lot less of our work was online, we even shared a computer. Not advisable, especially now! Even Gregor (age 11) has his own Chromebook now he is doing Google classroom instead of going in to school. Never share an office if you have enough space to create your own.

5. Take regular breaks

It’s very easy when you’re working from home to end up working all the time. Or at least you might think you are.

6. Try to vary the tasks you do

It’s easier when you’re at home to get stuck in a rut.

If you find you have free time on your hands

Decide what your project is going to be for the next wee while. If you have the luxury at the moment of having a bit more time on your hands than usual (which despite having no guests to look after, I don’t have) set yourself a target –


family activities

edible garden

Our edible garden behind Fraoch Lodge

Eve reads Gregor a story


Amazing meals at Fraoch Lodge

More advice

hiking with horses

Ponies in training

I’ll put up some weekly menus shortly and you can let me know if any of them are possible to create at the moment or what adaptations you’ve had to make (if they worked).

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