You are welcome to arrive in Kirkmichael at any time, as today is a designated arrival day with no planned activities. Please note that there will be an important welcome meeting this evening at our accommodation. Please check the log cabin notice board for more information on the location of this meeting or ask at reception. Please bring your passport and travel insurance documents to this meeting, as you will be required to fill out some important pre-tour admininstation documents. After learning more about our tour and plans for the following day, you are welcome to join our leader and your travelling companions for an optional dinner in the log cabin. Our accommodation for the week is a spectacularly located log cabin in the Scottish highlands. The log cabin has the feel of a lodge to it, and the rooms are ensuite with views out into the surrounding countryside where you can watch the wildlife passing by!
A 'glen' is the Scottish term for a valley, usually between the mountains up in the Highlands, and after a refreshing nights sleep and traditional Scottish breakfast, we head up to Glen Shee for a day hiking. This is typical Scottish scenery, as we hike among purple heather, and in the shadow of several 'munros', the name given to mountains over 3000ft, of which there are over 280 in Scotland. Around this area are some of the most unspoiled munros in the whole country, including The Cairnwell (933m) and Carn Aosda (917m). A good walk in the region is to the summit of Creag nan Gabhar, where there are extensive views over to Braemar and the highlands below. Today is a good time to test out our fitness, and our CEO will do their best to find the best walk for the fitness of our group, as there is an excellent amount of walking here. Return to our log cabin in Kirkmichael for the night. Estimated Hiking Time: 5hrs 30mins Approximate Distance Hiked: 15-17 kms
One of the few rivers in the UK where rafting is available all year around, the River Tay is a haven for rafting in Scotland. Because this is a natural river, the flow will go up and down with the seasons, but whenever you visit you are guaranteed a wet and wild ride! The rafting covers up to 8 miles, and after being kitted out and given a full safety briefing, we start our trip down river. This is whitewater rafting, and the difficulty will depend on the season. In summer, it can be grade 2-3, but as you head into winter, this becomes more of a 3-5 grading. During the course of the river, we take on the white water at Grandtully. This is famous as a location for the kayak slalom championships, so getting wet is almost guaranteed. Along the way there are a few games we can play, some of which will end up with us in the river, before the second section of the rafting, where we follow the course used for the kayak slalom championship, so we know that this is a thrilling ride.
Take a break from all that activity today, and enjoy some of the well-known Scottish hopsitality. Today we have included a whiskey tasting session to get to know Scotland's finest export. To be classed as a Scotch whiskey, each spirit has to be matured in barrels on Scottish soil for at least three years. Each whiskey in Scotland has a very different flavour, depending on the origin of the distillery. There are four distinct regions of whiskey production in Scotland - Lowland, Speyside, Highland and Campbelltown, and across these regions there are more than 125 different distilleries that produce excellent whiskey, although they may not all be to your taste. We recommend trying them all until you find one that you like! The rest of the day is free for us to explore the town of Pitlochry, before we return to the log cabin in Kirkmichael for the evening.
We have left today free in the itinerary to enjoy as you like. There is a host of activities available to you from the log cabin, ranging from walking to canyoning. If you prefer to take it easy before the rest of the activities this week, then you can stay around the log cabin. If you do, you could keep a look out for the wildlife that is around here. From the comfort of the bar you can look out over the highlands and spot buzzards, deer or the rare red squirrel out in the forest.
After a day at leisure, we're back out on our feet in the countryside today. We are making an attempt at the summit of Ben Vrackie which, at 2759 feet, stands just short of a munro, but is an impressive peak nonetheless. We set off from just outside Pitlochry, and after crossing a couple of paths through beech trees we end up in open moorland heading for the summit. Once we are out in the heather moorland, we have views not only up to the summit, but down to Pitlochry and the River Tummel where we have just come from. Continuing up past Loch a'Choire we reach the stepping stones that mark the route to the summit. From the summit, there are views down to the nearby munros and on a clear day to the Cairngorms beyond. After reaching the summit, there is time for a break to take in the views, before we head down to Pitlochry and return to our log cabin in Kirkmichael. Estimated Hiking Time: 7hrs Approximate Distance Hiked: 25 kms
Depart at any time.