Beinn Eighe, Torridon
Torridon is a place both spectacular and scary, as anyone who’s gazed at Liathach’s turreted arêtes will tell you, but this band of peaks is also home to Britain’s only waymarked mountain walk, a four-mile loop on Beinn Eighe. While it’s achievable, it’s no walk in the park, as one of the many terrains it explores is near-vertical quartzite. From Loch Maree you climb by the pines and birches of a forest that has been here for 9000 years and helped earn Beinn Eighe the first National Nature Reserve gong in 1951. Lush turns lunar as you break the treeline and the route through the crush of pale quartzite takes focus, to hit its top at Conservation Cairn at just over 1800 feet. The higher ridges of Beinn Eighe spider the skyline, behind which lurk Liathach and Beinn Alligin, before the descent tips you steeply through a verdant gorge, with the bulk of Slioch across the loch. WALK HERE: Find Beinn Eighe at www.lfto.com/bonusroutes or pick up an info-packed leaflet at the car park.