A Week on the Edge of Europe
12 people attending
4 places left
Sunday 23 to Sunday 30 September 2018.
Join us for a week away on the Outer Hebrides to explore an archipelago of over 100 islands that stretch for 130 miles across the Atlantic Ocean.
There is history to discover, with the Callanish Stones dating from around 2900BC, Dun Carloway broch from around 1AD to the Blackhouses from the late 1700s, in which we are staying part of the week. There are many other sights to take in during our stay on the islands - with Otters, birds and sealife to spot, hills to climb, long sandy beaches to wander along and possibly a visit to Scotland's newest distillery.
We will spend the first three nights staying on Benbecula in the five star accomodation of Nunton House before transferring on Wednesday to the amazing Blackhouses on Lewis for the remaining four nights. The event price includes travel on the minibus throughout the week, from Edinburgh Airport on the outward journey, our various escapades during the week and the return trip to Edinburgh Airport the following Sunday.
IMPORTANT TRAVEL INFORMATION
Please note space is limited on the minibus so everyone will be restricted to two bags - one large bag and one small day pack maximum. It would also be helpful if the large bag is a rucksack or duffel bag, as these will be easier to fit into the space we have on the bus. You will also need to purchase your own passenger ticket for the three legs of our journey by ferry - Mallaig to Lochboisdale (£10.45), Berneray to Leverburgh (£3.60) and Stornoway to Ullapool (£9.50) - these tickets can be purchased at each departure port.
Outward Journey -
We will depart from Edinburgh Airport at 09:30 on Sunday 23rd, with pickups at Stirling railway station at 10:30 and Fort William station (Morrisons) at 13:00. We have to be checked in at Mallaig for 14:30, so we cannot wait past these times.
Return Journey -
The ferry departs from Stornoway at 08:00 on Sunday 30th, and we can drop off at Inverness railway station for around 12:00, Perth railway station at 14:30 and Edinburgh Airport at 15:30.
What to bring
The main activity planned for the weekend is to explore the island, good walking boots are a must along with clothing for any weather - the Outer Hebrides will get anything coming in from the Atlantic!
Boots: Hiking boots are arguably the most essential piece of kit when hiking just about anywhere. Walker’s should make sure that their boots are both waterproof and breathable, and provide good ankle support. Boots should also be in good condition.
Socks: A good comfy pair of walking socks is essential really; they keep your feet warm and drier than normal socks.
Gaiters: Gaiters attach to the bottom of walking boots and extend to just under the knee. They provide waterproofing for the bottom half of the leg. They are not essential to have but you will feel the difference if you have them when walking through muddy or boggy ground - which is almost guaranteed in Scotland.
Walking Trousers: You should have a suitable pair of trousers for walking in, jeans are not suitable as they take on water when wet and will make you cold. The same goes for jogging pants/tracksuit clothing.
Waterproof Trousers: Waterproof trousers are essential in case of wet weather. They are also good to be worn as a second layer as they can act as a windproof barrier, keeping the legs warm.
Base Layer: A breathable base layer should be chosen in order to let sweat escape from the body. This could be a cheaper sports top or you could go top of the range with a merino top, as cotton T-Shirts can become damp and uncomfortable when climbing a mountain.
Other Layers: On top of your base layer, you can have a variety of options such as a micro fleece, a fleece jacket or a rugby/sports top can sometimes be good. Having one or two additional layers gives you flexibility when the weather is changeable – the more layers, the more flexible you can be in adapting to the weather.
Waterproof Jacket: A good waterproof jacket is one of the most important pieces of kit you will require when hiking. Walkers should look for a jacket that is both waterproof and breathable in order for them to be protected from sweat. Materials such as Gore-tex are often the best choices but they can be expensive unless you shop sensibly, don’t forget your OutdoorLads discount for Full Members at Cotswold outlets.
Hat: As most heat is lost through the head a good hat is essential.
Gloves: Gloves are essential if there is a cold wind coming in off the Atlantic, windproof or better still waterproof gloves are the best choice.
Rucksack: A good Rucksack that is comfortable to wear is essential, and required to carry both food and equipment. Day sacks should have a capacity of around 30 litres. As an option you could store your items in waterproof bags inside just in-case or ensure the bag has a waterproof bag to pull over the top.
Mobile Phone: If you choose to bring your phone, then you are well advised to buy a waterproof bag or if that is not possible a simple food/freezer bag will suffice.
Food & drink
Sunday evening - please bring an item for the buffet
For the customary Outdoorlads buffet, please bring something to feed 1 or 2 people. Be imaginative with your offering... You could bring a selection of meats or cheese, some pasta salad, fancy bread or even do a bit of baking!
Breakfast and dinner each day are included in the event cost.
You will need to provide your own lunch each day.
Tea & coffee is available throughout the week at each venue.
On Benbecula there is a Co-op at Creagorry and MacLennans supermarket in Balivanich. On Lewis the nearest shops are in Stornoway, where there is a large Co-op and a Tesco. There will be a number of opportunities to go shopping throughout the week, we do ask that you are prepared for when the bus will be making a trip.