We’ve reached the top, so I guess it’s all down south from here (ish). Having added 820 miles to the clock just getting here, we headed to the official starting point.
After nosing through the various souvenir shops, visiting the small museum (which led us back into one of the souvenir shops), and explaining to a small group of American tourists that they weren’t a mere “30 or so kilometers” from London (you’d have thought they would have seen the sign), we were on our way.
As this was our first day of serious driving distance wise (according to google maps our entire route would take 7 hours 20 minutes), I made sure to stop along the way for quick rests. The mountains of Scotland are beautiful, though a little strange. After waking up from a quick nap in a layby, I opened the door of the car to see a dead crustacean.
We took a short break in Inverness for some lunch, and to also meet up with a friend. Ironically while she was regaling us with a tale about a crash at an accident hot spot (while we were walking right next to it), there was almost another crash between a bus and a car; the car had jumped a red light. I love good timing.
Next on our stop was the Glenfinnan Viaduct, and, if we could time it right, seeing the Steam Train ride across it. Those Harry Potter (& the Chamber of Secrets I’m told) fans will know it as an iconic bridge where … something happened. I won’t lie I don’t know anything about HP unless it’s related to sauce. Is this the route to Hogwarts? Didn’t he get the train from London? What’s it doing up here in Scotland? Unfortunately we were too late to see the train itself, that only runs twice a day, but the viaduct was still very impressive. If only the rain didn’t dampen the fun (commence booing).
We left the viaduct and went southward towards Falkirk. The mountainous roads seemed endless, and the weather had become much worse. Dangerous as it got, we couldn’t help but gander over at the way the clouds were just falling across the mountains (and the sodding road).
I wanted to try and squeeze in a visit to Loch Lomond since we were somewhats in the vicinity, but with the weather being what could only be described as pretty shitty, we kept on course. To be fair, I only wanted to go there so I could sing the song (like a bit of a twat, I know).
We arrived at our hotel in Falkirk tired and sodden. The Shat-Nav had sent us to the wrong area of Falkirk and we had a hell of a time finding the hotel, and the rain came down harder than ever. But that didn’t matter, for this place had free internet access.