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All things hiking Winter

Why come to Scotland in winter?

10 reasons in pictures

Have you ever wondered what all the fuss is about? Scotland. Why? Especially in winter must be far too cold and far too dangerous. Take a look – yes, it’s proper winter but isn’t that preferable to wet rain, umbrellas and grey days with little to differentiate between summer and winter, except for the lack of leaves on the trees.

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Photo Credit: Paul Tomkins/VisitScotland

1. A Snow Hole Expedition:

Digging out a snow hole site in the Cairngorms under the guidance of Andy Bateman of Scot Mountain Holidays. It’s not quite Sweden’s ice hotel as you have to create the living space yourself, but they’ll have a relatively comfortable night out of the wind, cocooned in their sleeping bags enjoying being cooked for and served a three course meal by their guide.

 

Build a snowhole in Scotland

Build your own snow hole in the Cairngorms

 

kintail in winter

2. Winter mountaineering and ridge walking:

Hiking along the ridges of Argyll, Kintail or Glencoe – space to yourself away from all the crowds and views which stretch for miles under clear skies. We often visit the west coast of Scotland in March to bag some winter Munros: we’ve run trips in Argyll, Glencoe and Kintail. For this year’s offering check the calendar or the Munro bagging page. Some of our clients have left from these trips with the most spectacular images – but those are for another blog.

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Photo credit: Dave Downing

3. Cross country skiing:

The beauty of Glenmore in the winter. Snow laden trees and cross-country skiing opportunities. Short days are not always a disadvantage as they allow for the most spectacular photographic opportunities, as seen above.

 

winter skills in the Cairngorms

4. A winter skills course:

Safety skills for walking in the winter hills, demonstrated here by Andy Bateman – ice axe arrest. Legitimate playing in the snow, but as part of a learning process on how to avoid a sliding fall.

 

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5. Winter photography:

Scotland on a cold, clear, crisp day in winter. What’s not to like, especially if you like to take stunning pictures.

 

Winter in the Cairngorms

6. Reindeer:

The Cairngorm Reindeer herd in their natural environment. When out walking in the Park, you can come face to face with the reindeer who roam the hills in winter.

Ptarmigan

7. Ptarmigan:

The Scottish Munros, particularly the Cairngorms, are the only area of the UK where you can spot Ptarmigan. Ptarmigan change their plummage twice a year – they have a summer coat, a breeding plummage and a winter coloration to blend in with the snow. You can almost step on the Ptarmigan sometimes as they like to conserve their energy by walking rather than flying if they can and they nest on the ground – there being no trees at the elevation where they are found.

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8. Burns Night:

a chance to savour some of Scotland’s most famous and unique produce. Haggis is a traditional meal to celebrate Scotland’s greatest bard, whose influence can be found everywhere from the Birks of Aberfeldy (where there is a thinking/writing seat dedicated to Rabbie Burns) to the Winking Owl in Aviemore, where the great bard is said to have taken breakfast. You might not even be aware of his influence on your own life from: “And we’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet, for auld lang syne” – which you’ll have sung if you’ve ever brought the New Year in; to “O’ my luve’s like a red, red rose, that’s newly sprung in June” and a special Scottish grace for a meal: “Soem hae meat and canna eat And some would eat that want it. But we hae meat and we can eat, sae let the Lord be thankit.”

Burns Night is 25th January and is celebrated throughout Scotland with a haggis meal and the address to the haggis – written by Rabbie Burns.

 

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9. Colours of winter:

Scotland is famous for the colours of heather in the summer but the winter can be colourful too. This is the time of year that you’ll get to appreciate the sunset. The snow also reflects the light of the moon & stars if the sky is clear, so a night out in winter can be glorious.

 

10. Snow is fun:

snow will entertain the kids for hours and cost nothing, but make sure you’re well stocked with socks, gloves and hot chocolate!

 

Useful links:

Have fun in the snow: 

Snow related activities for kids:

Free mountain weather service:

Met Office forecast for the hills:

Scottish Avalanche Information service:

 

 

A hiking tour in Scotland: To hike or to tour – that is the question?

distillery whisky

Typical pagoda structures which seem so incongruous on a distillery

When you have a very limited amount of holiday time, it’s very difficult to make choices for your time in Scotland without spending a lot of time in a car/bus/train as you’ll no doubt want to do everything the guide book recommends. Every different district in Scotland is busy promoting itself as “THE must-see destination”. No doubt you’ll want to spend some time in Edinburgh. A lot of people put Skye very high up the list. If you’re American, St. Andrew’s will no doubt be up there near the top of the list too and if you’re a first time visitor Loch Ness will probably be somewhere near the top too. How on earth are you going to fit it all in to your schedule?

minibus tours of Scotland

Classic highlights of Scotland will inevitably include a visit to Edinburgh Castle

Option 1: Minibus tours

Your first option of course is to consider one of the many minibus tours of Scotland, which will promise to take you to all the top sites and also deliver “off-the-beaten” track extras. They’ll reserve accommodation for you and suggest places to eat, but watch out. The quoted price is usually just for the bus tour and doesn’t include accommodation, meals or entry fees into the various places of interest. When you’re budgeting for one of these tours, make sure you take into account the extra expenses you will have to incur.

Many of these tours, particularly Rabbies, will also promise you some opportunities to get out of the bus and walk a wee bit. Most of these walks are very short (around 2 hours) and are generally in very scenic but popular places like Loch an Eilean (in the Cairngorms) or the Fairy Pools (on Skye).

Option 2: Self-drive tours

Do you truly want to be part of a crowd? Another option is to hire a car and research an efficient route around the places you want to see. Try not to double back on yourself. See if you can find a suitable circular route. Visit Scotland have developed quite a few suggested itineraries on their site which are free to download and usually follow various themes so you should be able to find one which fits in with your interests.

We can offer self-drive itineraries. Please bear in mind that we are always going to recommend that you spend some time with us here in the Cairngorms National Park. We believe it is by far and away the best area to base yourself when exploring the Highlands.

Self-drive tours are a great way to go as you can be completely independent. You are able to get to all those out of the way places which are inaccessible on public transport. The disadvantage is that they can be very time-consuming to plan and if you don’t know the country you could make mistakes which cost you time-wise. Don’t forget to allow a relatively significant budget for fuel on top of the hire and activities you’ve planned.

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Classic short walk in the Cairngorms visits Loch an Eilean.

 

Option 3: Join a hiking adventure or design an Off-the-Beaten Track tailor made adventure 

Off the beaten track:

A tailor-made itinerary with Scot Mountain Holidays doesn’t have to be too expensive. Don’t forget if you’re making comparisons that we provide a complete service. You won’t have to allow extra in your budget for additional meals or accommodation or activities. We’ll look after everything for you. Usually our prices include everything except alcohol from when we pick you up to when we drop you off. We can make adaptations to suit you and your party but our trips aim to provide you with a unique experience of Scotland not a package off the shelf.

Sometimes we do take our guests to the more popular tourist sights, like Loch Ness. If we didn’t include places like this, we wouldn’t get any enquiries. Usually however, these visits are not the most memorable parts of the visit. Sometimes guests are marginally disappointed by their day out with the rest of the tourists. One couple we worked with spent a week with us: they went hiking with Andy; they went out on mountain bikes exploring the forest and picking mushrooms; they went on the Zip wire in Aviemore and they went to Loch Ness (as on their itinerary). Their visit to Loch Ness was nowhere near as high on their list of memories as their day out with Andy in whisky country where they didn’t see another tourist all day.

 

Why choose a guide to hike in Scotland?

Nature’s bounty: handpicked chanterelles mushrooms

 

Guided and self-guided hiking adventures

Our hiking adventures are also aimed at providing all our guests with unique experiences so we avoid the hotspots other companies list as “off-the-beaten track” or as the French say “hors de sentiers battus” as in our opinion Glen Coe and the Old Man of Storr on Skye are not off the beaten track at all. We’d take you to places you’ve probably not heard of as below.

Hiking will be the focus of the trip and not visiting the popular tourist sights. You’ll certainly go home with a unique experience which will have involved all your senses: taste, touch, smell, hearing and sight. Memories created involving all your senses last longer and create more stories to share with your friends. No queues and no crowds!

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Hikers descending from a long day’s hike in the Assynt area (Scotland)

 

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Looking out over the vast expanse of the Cairngorms National Park (Highlands of Scotland)

Conclusion

There are lots of ways to explore Scotland from minibus or coach tours to hiking adventures. The method you choose will depend on your own personal priorities and who’s to say that you can’t come back and try another kind of experience the next time. We’ve certainly had some guests whose first experience of Scotland was a minibus tour round the highlights, but they’ve chosen to return and explore in greater depth with us as the bus tour merely whetted their appetite to see more.

Further Reading

Walking holidays in Scotland

Walking route options and choices

Planning a hiking holiday in Scotland (but not the West Highland Way)

Where to walk in the Highlands

When to come to Scotland

 

self-guided walking in the Highlands: Boat of Garten to Carrbridge loop

Boat of Garten – Carrbridge and back

Description:
Self-guided walking in the Highlands is how a great number of our visitors choose to explore the area. On this route the paths are good all the way and are seldom muddy (boots advised, though). Dogs welcome (on the lead for a few metres at Docharn Farm). Ceps and chanterelles may be seen in season…
Refreshments and toilets at each end of the walk;and the Landmark Centre at Carrbridge and the Steam Railway operating at Boat of Garten provide interest for all ages. It’s also a great family day out…

Stage 1:

The walk starts from Fraoch Lodge. At the end of our drive turn left and head up the road out of the village. On the edge of the village you will find the school path which runs parallel to the road up to the junction with the A95.

Stage 2:

At the junction you will follow the cycle route no 7 signs across the A95 heading up the narrow road through the hamlet of Chapelton. Follow the road round a corner to a cattle grid which you will cross; at which point the tarmac ends and the road turns into a farm track leading to Docharn Farm.

Stage 3:

The track leads you through the farm buildings of Docharn Farm where you will have spectacular views across the high peaks of the northern Cairngorms. The corries of Braeriach and Cairngorm will be clearly visible on a sunny day. Docharn Farm is not now lived in but used to be run as a smallholding and B&B by friends of ours who produced eggs, raspberries, strawberries, courgettes and tomatoes aplenty.

Stage 4:

After the farm you will reach a gate, the path can be muddy here. You will go through this gate and the next two gates continuing straight ahead as the path descends into the woods.

Stage 5:

As you follow the path down through the woods it will take you down to a junction near the B9153 which leads into Carrbridge.

Stage 6:

Turn right at the junction, away from the road, and continue to the edge of the wood. Soon you will cross a little wooden bridge and re-enter the trees. Stay on this path for half a mile to reach a gate at the other end of the wood.

Stage 7:

Go through the gate until you come to the tarmac road (Carr Road). Turn left onto the road and continue until you reach the main village. You’ll see the Landmark Forest Adventure centre up to your left, Carrbridge Kitchen and Carrbridge Bakery Tearoom are to your right close to the old bridge of Carr which spans the Dulnain river, an impressive sight at any time, but particularly when the river is in spate. The bridge is celebrating its 300th birthday in 2017. If you don’t have a picnic with you, you might want to consider stopping in Carrbridge for your lunch. Both Carrbridge Kitchen and The Bakery Tearoom do great food.

Carrbridge

The 18th century packhorse bridge of Carrbridge

Stage 8:

There is an altenative route into Carr woods to avoid too much road walking but if you’d like to go down to the bridge to take a look it probably makes sense to continue to follow the road next to the river, up to the station, under the railway and the A9 and on to the Sluggan Bridge footpath. The path is clearly indicated. This is also one of the prettiest sections of the route so do take this option if you can.

Stage 9:

After your diversion to Sluggan Bridge, you will come back up to the main road, a little further along than you left it. Across the road you will see another path through a gate. Take this track which you will follow almost all the way back to Boat of Garten.

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The Sluggan bridge

Stage 10:

You will pass a path junction and a crossroads of paths but each time continue straight ahead until you reach a stream which you need to ford on stepping stones. Take care here. You may need to use a stick for stability.

self-guided walking in the Highlands

Stepping stones here to help keep your feet dry, but walking poles will probably be useful too

Stage 11:

After the stream the track continues a little to the left and then climbs steadily uphill. Again continue straight ahead and eventually you will pass over a cattle grid.

self-guided walking in the Highlands

General Wade believed in getting from A to B along the straightest route possible.

Stage 12:

About 1km after the cattle grid there is a path to the left, after a crossroads. Take the path to the left, which is slightly more grassy and overgrown. This will lead to Kinveachy Estate cottages. Follow the GPS track and the map indicated carefully until you reach the tarmac track down to the A9.

Stage 13:

At the tarmac track, turn left and descend to the A9. Be very careful here as this is a very busy main road. Cross the A9 and descend on the small road past a keeper’s cottage. Be careful to walk on the right hand side of the road so that you are facing any oncoming traffic.

At the bottom of the road you will cross another road and head towards the cycle track which is slightly to the right of where you reach the Carrbridge road.

Stage 14:

Follow the cycle route towards Boat of Garten. This track will take you all the way back into the village past Big Husky Lodge and Deshar Primary School until you see Fraoch Lodge on your right.

self-guided walking in the Highlands

If you’re lucky you’ll pass the wee herd of Heelan Coo next to the road for a photo shoot.

Links:

Self-guided walking week in the Cairngorms National park

The Old Ways: General Wade’s Military road

Slochd Military Road

Located in the heart of Scotland, the Cairngorms National Park is voted one of the top 20 places to visit in the world by National Geographic Traveller Magazine. Offering activities for all types of travellers it’s no wonder people flock from all around the world to see this little piece of paradise.

Wild scenery of Scotland

Glorious wild scenery for the Cairngorms National Park

So why visit the Cairngorms National Park?

  1. Accessibility

Easily accessible from Scotland’s major cities, Inverness, Edinburgh and Glasgow. The Cairngorms are incredibly well connected and easy to navigate by all sources of public and private transportation. While in the national park you’ll find many walking/cycling paths for all levels of fitness connecting villages and towns making it exceptionally easy to explore.

Not all footpaths are waymarked, particularly on the high hills. If you’re unfamiliar with the area or if you want to learn a bit more about the Cairngorms and their history, geology, habitats, wildlife etc; then it is always a worthwhile investment to book:

  1. Attractions

No matter what your age or situation the Cairngorms offer attractions for everyone. You’re sure to feel the culture of Scotland with many historical castles to visit.

  1. Balmoral castle
  2. Braemar castle
  3. Corgarff castle
  4. Ballindalloch castle
  5. Loch an Eilean castle (ruins)
  6. Drumin castle, in Glenlivet

And on the outskirts of the Cairngorms:

  1. Cawdor castle
  2. Urquhart castle
  3. Brodie castle
  4. Balvenie Castle (ruins)
  5. Huntly Castle
Castles in the Cairngorms

Pipers welcome visitors to Braemar Castle

There are also distilleries aplenty producing the famous whisky the region is known for. (We’re at the beginning of the famous Speyside Whisky Trail and our tours often include a visit to Glenlivet distillery and/or the Speyside Cooperage  – where the oak barrels are made for the distilleries.) The national park is also home to endless outdoor opportunities. Because of this, walking, hiking and cycling are fantastic day activities, as well as endless outdoor choices and wildlife spotting opportunities. As a result, you’ll visit the best locations along amazing hiking trails when joining Scot Mountain Holidays on a guided tour. And, with Andy as your guide you’ll learn so much more about the region and the wildlife.

 

Autumn hiking

Hiking in the autumn (Cairngorms, Highlands)

  1. Seasonal options

No matter what the season, the Cairngorms offer fantastic attractions. Water sports and water based activities are a great option in summer and spring. In winter and late autumn there are snow sports and more complex hiking options to choose from. And wildlife watching and incredible hiking and cycling trails are available all year long. Because the Cairngorms are so well connected, Scot Mountain Holidays have options to experience all parts of Scotland. Giving you the best of both worlds.

Whether you’ve been before or a first time visitor, The Cairngorms National Park is a place you’ll grow to love. Fraoch Lodge, the heart of Scot Mountain Holidays will give you a base near all of the major sites. And Scot Mountain Holidays will help you to experience the Cairngorms in all their glory.

wild blueberries in the Cairngorms

Wild blueberries abound in mid-summer here in the Cairngorms

4. Hiking for everyone

There are hikes suitable for the wee ones, the ancients, the enthusiasts and the dabblers. Wildlife and nature walks to backpacks across the park. You can lose yourself in the “backwoods” or “wilderness” of the Cairngorm hinterland or saunter at your leisure through stunning scenery with the dog, the kids or on your own. There are certainly enough paths to choose from that you can choose solitude if you wish. The multitude of options can be confusing if you’re not familiar with the area, but here at Fraoch Lodge, we pride ourselves on choosing the best option to give you memories which will be the highlight of your visit to Scotland.

Reindeer in the Cairngorms

Visit the Cairngorm Reindeer herd in the natural environment (Cairngorms)

Walking in the Cairngorms

Beautiful views and a clear path on the ascent of Meall a'Bhucaille

Wild scenery of Scotland

Glorious wild scenery for the Cairngorms National Park

Hiking in Scotland

Hiking through the varied habitats of the Cairngorms

5. Variety of activities

There are numerous activities in the Cairngorms, particulary for those who enjoy the outdoors:

 

All these options are open to guests based at Fraoch Lodge – Andy and Rebecca are here to guide you on what is possible in your available time.

6. Discovery tour

If you are short of time you may want help putting the highlights of the Highlands, particularly the Cairngorms, into a time frame to make the most of your visit. We have an ideal 3 day experience of the Cairngorms which will get you hiking, biking and experiencing some of the crafts which have been a part of daily life in Scotland for hundreds of years. Use the Cairngorm Discovery tour as your introduction to the Highlands or as a base for your own Off the Beaten Track experience.

crafts in Scotland

Sheep have been a major influence on the HIghlands as has their fleece!

An international reputation: Scottish textiles

With more and more evidence surfacing of the adaptability, quality and craftsmanship of Scottish textiles manufacturers catching on worldwide in fashion luxury goods and film, it is no surprise the industry has also taken on sport technology.

Performance in a fabric is crucial to hikers, walkers and cyclists. In Scotland, weather can change so frequently that when it comes to treks off the beaten track (a speciality of Scot Mountain Holidays), to quote Duracel, “it just has to work”.

But we believe gear should more than work. It should be comfortable and enhance your experience. We also believe in supporting local and regional manufacturers for economic and environmental purposes.

Scottish textiles

Using the edge trimmings from the looms to make rugs. All made from 100% wool as is tweed. Wool is coming back in to fashion in outdoor clothing.

For these reasons, we have tracked down 5 Scottish innovators in the textile sport industry who are completely changing the performance game.

Scotland’s own

1. Findra

Cycling in the Cairngorms

On and off road cycling in the Cairngorms. We know all about valuing good cycling gear!

Dubbed by SCI market research as one of the top sport textile innovations in the last five years, Findra creates mountain biking clothing especially for women. They are recognized for their seamless knitting technology and unique textiles.

2. Nikwax technology

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Andy in a Nikwax Analogy smock jacket by Páramo

While Nikwax was developed in Northern England, innovater Nick Brown accredits his many walking holidays in Scotland as the inspiration for the product – so we feel it fits nicely on our list. This elastic and water-repellent treatment makes performance clothing elastic and breathable, protecting you from inevitable Scotland rain.

3. Harris Tweed Hebrides

From the Commonwealth Games to other professional sporting events, Harris Tweed is a becoming a feature of athletes all over the globe as they are revered for combining style with performance.

4. Diary Doll 

Another product innovation for women. Lightweight with a waterproof panel, these machine washable pants give women the freedom to carry on their explorations stress free.

5. Bonar Yarns

‘Greatness is in the detail’. This Scottish manufacturer has forever changed the notion of turf, enhancing sporting events all over the world.

Fit for a Highlander

Here in the Cairngorms we are part of the Highland way of life and keen nature enthusiasts, meaning we must be ready to adapt to Scotland weather in pursuing our adventures.

With manufacturers like these, nothing can hold us back!

Aviemore events: August highlight

Harley Davidson rally in Aviemore

This summer 2016 from August 26-29th thunder returns to the glens of the Cairngorms and Aviemore with its annual Harley-Davidson rally. Thousands of bikers assemble from all over the world with nearly 3,000 more in attendance. This is a must see for motorcycling enthusiasts. Better yet, the event features activities and demonstrations fit for the whole family:

Thunder in the Glens has become one of the major events in the UK for Harley-Davidson fans. People travel from all over the world to enjoy the 2-day event. It is now officially the largest Harley Davidson rally in the UK with an ever growing number of loyal fans.

Enjoy over 60 trade stands supporting local charities and group.

There are:

  • H-D demo bike rides
  • Jeep demo drives
  • Custom bike show
  • Outside entertainment
  • Scottish Knights battle scenes
  • Off road motorbike riding.

Sunday 2.00pm to 4.00pm – charity rides on the back of a Harley-Davidson in Rally Village.

Price details

Entry to evening entertainment on rally site by registration only.

£40 per person for the weekend pre-registered or £45 on the day.

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Matching bikes

Festival goers are always enthralled by their days spent at the fest, regardless of whether they own their own bikes. Get caught up in the whirl and excitement and catch the exhibits.

Highlights for our family include:

the ride-out from Aviemore and socializing with our guests part of the fest. (If Gregor is really lucky, some even let him have a seat on their cherished Harleys.)

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Ride-out showpiece from Aviemore

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Feel the roar!

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Hitching a ride

Here at Fraoch Lodge we are a fifteen minute drive from Grantown on Spey, making us an ideal nearby accommodation which can provide full catering and a shuttle service to the event – that is, if you’re not already motorcycling yourself there!

Outlander inspiration: The stunning landscape of a warrior’s hideaway

During my holiday in Scotland I went to Boat of Garten in the Cairngorms National Park. I decided to do a walking holiday and tour the countryside which provided Outlander inspiration for  Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander saga.  My guide was from Scot Mountain Holidays. I told him of my keen interest in the Jacobite rebellion and what happened to the Highlanders who fought for Bonny Prince Charlie after the Battle of Culloden.

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John Roy Stuart memorial

Retracing Jacobite steps

Being a connoisseur of the area he took me on a historic day trek through an 18th century village where I saw layouts of old black houses and kilns while tracing beaten carriage tracks. I was shown various medicinal, poisonous, and culinary plants relevant to the people of the time and Outlander’s heroine who delves into Scottish botany.

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Scots pine

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Wood Cranesbill

We spotted a tawny owl who flew by not ten feet in front of us. I tasted a juniper berry with the the richness of gin. I sniffed the vibrant yellow broom wafting of coconut, and took in the spicy scent of bog myrtle used at the time to flavour beers.

We saw two majestic golden eagles floating in circles together on a high wind!

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Spot the golden eagles!

But the most exciting part of our adventure was John Roy Stuart’s cave, a Jacobite rebel and close ally of the Bonny Prince. Andy described his rise as Jacobite leader to eventual fall as a “rebel”. We crouched inside the cave in which he hid from the Red Coats for years after his exile, and discussed what life would have been like at the time.

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Broom – coconut scented, you have to smell it to believe it!

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Globeflower

If ever there was a moment I felt close to James Fraser, this was it!

Stuart even had a young boy who ran him supplies (wee Fergus?) and narrowly escaped death many times. Standing in this place brought a sense of the real history, drama, intrigue and very thorough research by Gabaldon to ground her story in places and situations that happened to real people. I was given the gift of seeing first hand the evidence of their lives.

Delving further into Jacobite history

My hosts took me to the Culloden Battlefield and Visitors Centre. We saw a panoramic video re-enactment of the battle which is very impactful, and got an in depth immersion into the history told by eye witnesses and historical accounts. Plaques made reference to John Roy Stewart’s contribution.

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Place where “John Roy Stuart’s 200” were stationed in line with the Jacobites before commencing battle at Culloden 16 April 1746

We also saw commemorations to the various clans which had lost members during the battle, including the Frasers.

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Clan Fraser memorial, Battle of Culloden 1746

An unbeatable guide

Being able to learn more about Jacobites and the history which informed the Outlander series was truly fascinating. I look forward to seeing more of Scotland’s history through walking its landscapes, and there’s no better guides and base for it than in the Cairngorms with the warm and knowledgeable hosts at Froach Lodge.

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Ryvoan, the other end of John Stuart’s ridge

Check out Scot Mountain Holiday’s Outlandish Scotland: Off-the-beaten-track and Outlander events summer 2016 for more details!

Exciting news for Outlander fans!

The Starz drama based on the historical fiction and time travel series by Diana Gabaldon has been renewed for 2 more seasons, which promises to return to the Highlands.

We can always count on Outlander for intrigue, drama, stunning Scottish landscape and, of course, men in kilts! Which is why we here at Scot Mountain Holidays have accumulated a list of events to compliment your Outlander and Jacobite fever.

This summer, 2016

1. Fort George

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Falcon demonstration

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Highlanders at the ready

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Military re-enactment

Close to the Inverness airport, Fort George would not exist if not for the Jacobite rebellion, which is a major feature of Claire and Jamie’s story. Their re-enactments are unbeatable:

2. Highland Folk Museum

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The Old Township

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Thatch roof cottage

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Make your own A-frame croft and grind flour

Just outside our doorstep is Britain’s first open air museum. Check out the old township to get a feel for the Highland way of life. Oh, and did we mention Outlander was filmed here?

3. Culloden Battlefield Visitor Centre

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Stills of the Culloden battlefield panorama re-enactment

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A long night’s march

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For the Stuart cause

Walk through the fields of the historic battlefield and visit its interactive centre. Learn how 1,200 Jacobites were slaughtered in under an hour brinigng an end to a Scottish era:

4. Urquhart Castle

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Urquhart Castle

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Ghosts of Urquhart’s Past

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Historical dress-up at Urquhart

Experience Old Scotland and the lead up to the rebellion through the story of Urquhart Castle and its eventual demolition:

Don’t miss out…

All of these events are within easy reach of Fraoch Lodge. Contact us for more details and come immerse yourself in the Scottish Highland history which inspired Outlander!

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