63 miles covered in our 24 hour unsupported
challenge along the West Highland Way
The event takes place on the Appalachian Trail in the Eastern United States, which extends between Springer Mountain in Georgia and Mount Katahdin in Maine. It is modelled off of the Cateran Yomp in Scotland and is organised by the Allied Forces Foundation, which supports ill and injured veterans and their families through outdoor and adventurous activities.
“Through a series of outdoor, peer-lead events that challenge the mind and body, Allied Forces Foundation provides opportunities that reinvigorate the spirit of comradeship and teamwork and instill a renewed sense of purpose with the Veteran.”
This year, a virtual element was added to allow teams to be able to take part wherever in the world they were. Our team of two registered and set out to complete as many miles as we could on the famous West Highland Way – which turned 40 this month. With our bags packed with everything needed to sustain ourselves for 24 hours (including plenty of Performance M:X Concentrate!), we set off from Milngavie at 0830 on a rainy Saturday morning in early October. We made great progress in the first leg, reaching Balmaha at the 19-mile point in under 5.5 hours, allowing for a quick stop for lunch before starting the long and challenging 21 mile stretch along Loch Lomond.
We made the most of the light and found a dry spot under a rocky overhang at the 35-mile point around 11.5 hours into the yomp, stopping for some mac n cheese in a bag and a spot of foot admin before setting off again in the dark. The darkness and rain made the already rocky terrain on this stretch pretty treacherous which slowed us down, but we were glad to bump into Andrew’s dad, who appeared out of nowhere and joined us for the remainder of the Loch Lomond leg.
After tending to our blisters again at Beinglas Farm, we set off on our final leg, thankful to have the worst of the terrain behind us. The rain didn’t stop for a second and the miles seemed to get longer, but spurred on by masses of online support and a worthy cause, we were delighted to make it to Bridge of Orchy as the light returned, with 63 miles under our belt.
We’d like to say a massive thanks to everyone who tracked, supported and donated on our fundraising page. We are so pleased to have raised over £700 which we know will be well appreciated by the Allied Forces Foundation. A special mention goes to Adrian, who was doing a solo hike and joined us for a stretch, and to Andrew’s dad for the surprise visit and hugely appreciated lift home.
If you’d like to donate, you can still do so by clicking this donation link.