West Coast Canoe Odyssey
22nd-26th April 2024
A 5-day paddling journey taking you from inland open water lochs to coastal regions on the West Coast of Scotland. Your journey will take you to remote areas only accessible by boat, surrounded by the rugged and scenic landscape that holds the myths and legends that encompass Scottish history and folklore. At night we wild camp under the stars at remote locations on the shores of lochs and in coastal bays.
This is a canoe trip for those who have a passion for the outdoors, a love for paddling and want to experience the wilderness of Scotland on an expedition using open boats as the method of journeying. Some personal paddling skills are essential for this trip however you will have the opportunity to develop your technical skills throughout the trip.
Guided by two qualified and very experienced canoe coaches; Liam Green & Emy McLeod. Both have vast experience in guiding trips across Scotland and are guaranteed to provide you with a fantastic canoe journey in the remote wilderness.
Cost: £500 per person
Location: West Coast, Scotland – Meeting point Fort William
What does the cost of the expedition include?
A 5 day and 4 night canoe expedition with two highly qualified canoe coaches and paddle guides with a vast knowledge in canoeing, paddle equipment, navigation and wild camping. The guides will share their knowledge of the Scottish wildlife, history, myths and folklores as you journey from inland lochs to the coastal regions. This trip provides a perfect opportunity for you to develop your paddling on the sea, challenge your technical and tactical abilities in managing your boat in windy conditions up to force 5. There may also be opportunities to do exploring by foot so it is recommended to pack a pair of walking boots in case!
Pre trip departure there will be a zoom / google meet where you will meet your two guides and the rest of the clients joining the trip. This pre trip meeting will give you an opportunity to voice any questions and discuss our trip together as a team and come feeling fully prepared for a real adventure!
Post trip you will be sent a link to download all trip photography that the guides will be taking throughout the expedition.
Equipment hire of items and kit can be arranged – please refer to the below kit list section.
Grading & Experience / Is this trip for me?
This expedition journey would be great for those who have already completed a multi-day paddle expedition or have some skills in canoeing and looking to experience a trip that mixes wild camping with journeying on a variety of open water. The trip can be paddled in solo or in tandem crafts; whichever you prefer you should have personal paddling skills and experience in open water, wind and gentle moving water. Aimed for individuals, couples and/or groups who want to experience remote areas of Scotland, away from the crowds and incorporate journeying on the sea in an open boat. If you wish to speak to the guides about your experience and if this trip is for you before booking please get in touch to discuss further.
Trip Difficulty: On the West Coast Canoe Odyssey previous experience in an open boat is required. You will be looking to paddle for around 5 – 6 hours a day, covering approximately 15km – 20km; this is all weather dependent; alternative routes may have to be implemented if the weather deems the chosen route not achievable. Your guides have an extensive knowledge of the area and will be able to provide suitable alternatives to ensure the best time on the water throughout your journey. Both guides are qualified mountain leaders and if the weather prevents us from paddling on any of the days you will have an option to explore nearby hills, forestry areas and coastal walks for wildlife spotting and sites of historic significance.
For this trip you must have your own transport. As with the nature of the expedition, by open boat, from an A to B location there will be a shuttle element required to have vehicles at the end point of the journey, this is factored into day 1 & day 5 of the trip.
Kit List Requirements
Below is a suggested kit list for the trip. Items are split in essential and recommended. If there are items of equipment that you do not have, these can be provided and rented at an additional cost; equipment marked with * are available for rental.
Canoe with airbags or floatation blocks & 5m Bow & Stern Line*Buoyancy Aid*
Paddle (plus spare)*White Water Paddling Helmet*
Barrell / Dry Bags*
Neoprene Gloves / Pogies for paddling in
Kneeling Mat & Bailer*
Paddle Clothing & Waterproofs
Tent, Inflatable Roll Mat & Season 3 Sleeping Bag
Camping Stove & Gas / Cooking Utensils + Plate / Bowl / Coffee Mug
Food: 5 Lunches, 4 B & 4 D + Snacks
Water Container (min 2L bottles) + flask (additional drinks optional)
Footwear (includes ankle support) / Walking boots
Spare Clothes – merino / technical base layers, thick socks
Warm Jacket for wearing around camp area
Head Torch plus spare batteries
Warm Hat & Gloves (plus spare gloves)
Lightweight towel & toiletries
Dry Trousers & Cag
Sail (solo or downwind sail rig)*
Personal First Aid Kit
Water Purification Tablets
Suncream, Sunglasses & Peaked cap (it can be sunny)
Portable Charging Device
Spare Bags for Wet Kit
Outdoor slippers or crocs for camp
Journey in a traditional way at a pace that allows you to take in the scenic Scottish landscape.
Experience paddling in the remote wilderness and on the sea in an open boat.
Develop your paddling skills and receive coaching from two expert canoe guides & qualified coaches.
Post trip – receive a link to download photos from your journey to have as memories from the 5-day expedition.
See calendar for course dates!