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    Brian Andrews reviewed West Highland Way

    5 days ago

    Weather: it rained nearly every day, which added “atmosphere” and challenges, but low clouds also blocked many of the mountain views (we saw them on the train ride back)

    What’s great: 96 miles (we did it in 7 days). You can stay in villages along the way (don’t have to carry a heavy pack). You can also have your extra luggage transported between lodgings.

    The experience: walking an average of 14+ miles a day is good for the soul. My mind found absolute bliss on the trail - even in heavy rain and wind. Loved that aspect (and am struggling a wee bit being back in cities).

    The views: the Highlands and Loch Lomand are beautiful. I’d estimate that is about 33% of the trip. Another 33%+, though, is walking across / near pastures / road / train tracks. The remaining 1/3 was in forest or near streams / rivers. So while my mind was able to escape with the rhythm of hiking, I never really felt a wilderness escape. Just adjust your expectations accordingly (ie this is not total wilderness immersion like hut-to-hut trips in New Zealand, Tasmania or other parts of the world).

    People: the majority were friendly. Never felt unsafe. Mostly Europeans (not many Americans) and quite a few Scots. The Way never felt crowded (except day hikers at Conic Hill).

    Advice: take your time. Take breaks. Find an easy pace - 14+ miles will wear on you if you pound out the miles. 7 days means you probably have one 20 mile day - I was a bit jealous of the people who took an extra day.

    Cost: it was pretty reasonable. I used Gemini Walks, who arranged all lodging and luggage transport. I heard only positive reviews of other trip planners as well.

    Brian Andrews completed West Highland Way

    5 days ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Edinburgh's Royal Mile - Castle To Palace

    5 days ago

    I asked our hotel clerk - tell me about walking here in Scotland. He looked puzzled. I clarified - you drive on the left... “Oh! he says, yeah, there are no rules. It’s a madhouse. Everyone for themselves.” If you don’t mind the rugby scrum of narrow pavement (sidewalks) with thousands of tourons (tourists + morons) then maybe you’ll enjoy the Royal Mile. The old architecture IS interesting, just too many people for my taste.

    Brian Andrews reviewed Arthur's Seat

    5 days ago

    Great views and a nice way to escape some of the hordes of tourists in Edinburgh (not all of them tho). Clockwise gets you to the top faster (along a sloping path), but you have to come down the “infinite steps,” which were a bit slick. Obviously counter-clockwise means you climb the uneven, stone steps that, seriously, seemed to last forever!

    Brian Andrews completed Arthur's Seat

    5 days ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Three Mile Creek Trail

    29 days ago

    Wonderful hike. We hiked about 3 miles in and crossed the stream 12 times - about 1,250' elevation gain. Changing terrain takes you through dark pine forest, amidst bright aspen stands, under fascinating rock cliffs, past a beaver pond, and across open meadows. We met someone who said there are a total of 18 creek crossings if you go all the way to the intersection.

    Note that there is now a fairly large parking lot on the left (at about mile 2.4 from Grant). The trail starts across the bridge and heads north. The map the parking lot shows the trail as being east of Guanella Pass Road -- this is inaccurate.

    Brian Andrews completed Three Mile Creek Trail

    29 days ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Jim Creek Trail

    3 months ago

    Great to snowshoe in fresh powder. Limited views - not sure I would like it without snow covered trees

    Brian Andrews completed Jim Creek Trail

    3 months ago

    Brian Andrews added Jim Creek

    3 months ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Hengifoss and Litlanesfoss Waterfall

    4 months ago

    Few / no crowds in August? Count me in! Two waterfalls, wonderful trail. Awesome example of basalt cliffs. And the upper waterfall shows off the layers of sediment / volcanic dust that built up over the centuries / millennia (?).

    Trail was "up hill" but not steep.

    Brian Andrews reviewed Gullfoss Waterfall

    4 months ago

    The waterfall(s) are beautiful and awe inspiring. That being said, the Thingvallar / Geysir / Gulfoss triumvirate was underwhelming. Probably not worth a full day in the car. If we were to do the ring road again (and we were looking for natural beauty and hiking throughout the trip), we'd skip this day and spend more time along the south coast / glaciers.

    Brian Andrews completed Gullfoss Waterfall

    4 months ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Laugavegur Trail

    4 months ago

    Cheating a little bit . . . we did a full day hike during a day tour from Reykjavik. Other than climbing on a glacier, the best thing we did in Iceland. Beautiful, ever-changing landscapes with multi-colored hues. Absolutely stunning. THIS is why you came to Iceland!

    Brian Andrews completed Laugavegur Trail

    4 months ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Skogafoss Waterfall

    4 months ago

    Beautiful waterfall. But do yourself a favor and follow the trail above Skogafoss. More waterfalls, fewer people, terrific views.

    Brian Andrews completed Skogafoss Waterfall

    4 months ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Glymur Falls Loop Trail

    4 months ago

    Not your typical walk in the woods. One of our favorite hikes in Iceland. The "bridge" at the bottom was washed out. Probably not for the inexperienced -- cliff-side exposure on the southeast side with a need for route-finding skills on the way down the northwest side. But so worth it to get away from the tourons that swarm the easy trails.

    Brian Andrews completed Glymur Falls Loop Trail

    4 months ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Evergreen Mountain Trail

    4 months ago

    Kind of a mini-Bergen Peak. Great trail close to Denver. Home-trail-lunch-home was a little under 4 hours (probably 2 hours on the trail). Late February the trail was snowpacked (recent snowfall) with no ice. Didn't need snowshoes or traction. On a Saturday morning saw 15-20 hikers and half a dozen bikers. You're in forest most of the way, but with some scenic views at the top. We'll be going back.

    Brian Andrews reviewed Raccoon Trail

    4 months ago

    Great views along the trail and from Panorama Point. Didn't needs snowshoes, but traction devices increased speed and safety. A lot of time in the trees.

    Brian Andrews completed Raccoon Trail

    4 months ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Bootjack Trail Loop

    7 months ago

    Brian Andrews completed Bootjack Trail Loop

    7 months ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Beaver Brook and Chavez Trail Loop

    8 months ago

    Good parts: Easy access from Denver (Exit 253 off I-70). Bottom section is scenic.

    Bad: What goes down must come up - and the best part is at the bottom. Return to the trailhead was quite a slog. Trail is a bit easy to lose near the bottom - when in doubt cheat close to the stream.

    The Chavez section (east) is more scenic than the west (Beaver Brook) - so consider going clockwise so the more scenic trail is your uphill section.

    Brian Andrews saved Rustler Gulch

    about 1 year ago

    Brian Andrews saved Brush Creek

    about 1 year ago

    Brian Andrews saved Washington Gulch Trail

    about 1 year ago

    Brian Andrews saved Judd Falls Trail

    about 1 year ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Vernal and Nevada Falls via the Mist Trail

    about 1 year ago

    We visited in May 2017 following one of Yosemite's wettest winters. What a stunning trail. Possibly one of my favorite hikes ever (or it could be the recency effect). Loved hiking through the mist (it is the Mist Trail afterall) to Vernal Falls. You leave a lot of the crowd as you approach Nevada Falls. I strongly recommend going down the John Muir trail - while it is longer it isn't as steep, so easier on the body.

    Brian Andrews reviewed Bridalveil Fall Trail

    about 1 year ago

    Get up close and personal to a stunning waterfall. Walk is easy -- I think I've walked farther in the parking lot while grocery shopping.

    Brian Andrews completed Bridalveil Fall Trail

    about 1 year ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Mirror Lake Trail

    about 1 year ago

    Start early to avoid the crowds. The southside seemed less crowded (and provides better access to "mirror lake"). The reflection of the granite in the lake was beautiful. The east end was flooded (in May), but only to about mid-calf or ankle deep. There is a bridge over the creek, so even in high water you aren't at risk. Overall, a pleasant easy walk.

    Brian Andrews reviewed Valley Floor Loop Trail

    about 1 year ago

    Surprisingly uncrowded. A pleasant walk through forest and meadows.

    Brian Andrews completed Valley Floor Loop Trail

    about 1 year ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Illilouette Falls Trail

    about 1 year ago

    Leaving from Glacier Point along the Panorama trail, this hike provides stunning views up the Tanaya Creek drainage and views of Vernal / Nevada falls . . . along with an eagle-eyed view of Half Dome. Arrive early at Glacier Point to avoid the crowds (we finished at around 11 am and the parking lot was full).

    Brian Andrews completed Illilouette Falls Trail

    about 1 year ago

    Brian Andrews reviewed Artist Point Trail

    about 1 year ago

    Just above Tunnel View, this trail provides a quick escape from the crowded road. Within 10 minutes we were away from the crowds.

    Brian Andrews completed Artist Point Trail

    about 1 year ago