Monday, 1 September 2008

Perthshire Walking Festival

Perthshire and Blairgowrie Walking Festival

There are 23 new walks and activities, high and low level walks, stimulating routes, guided walks, graded walks. Truly a walking festival starting 3rd to 9th October 2008.

The organisers are grateful for the volunteers who have helped put this event together, the organisations who have provided sponsorship or other support, the Mountain Leaders, the Countryside Ranger service, the land owners, first aiders, and other guides and drivers, and not least you the participants.

Organisations sponsoring or supporting the event:

Blairgowrie and District Next Steps

Blairgowrie Hillwalking Club

Blairgowrie and East Perthshire Tourist Association

East Perthshire Access Network

Perth and Kinross Countryside Trust

NSC Design Ltd

The Royal Hotel, Blairgowrie

Strathmore and The Glens Rural Partnership

Craigdon Mountain Sports, Perth

Blairgowrie Merchants Association

Perth and Kinross Council

Blairgowrie Tourist Information Office (Visit Scotland)

Walk Booking

Walk bookings can be made by using the booking form, please send to:

Blairgowrie Walking Festival

NSC Design Ltd

Balmacron Farmhouse



PH12 8TD

Tel: 01828 640763

Your booking and allocation will be confirmed by return and payment by cheque (made payable to "Blairgowrie Walking Festival") should be made as soon as possible, but no later than 31st August 2008. Alternatively payment may be made by Credit Card, for which a PayPal email payment request will be returned with confirmation of your bookings (a PayPal account is not necessary). Bookings after this date must be accompanied by your payment. Payment confirms your place as priority for places will be given to those who have paid. It is possible (subject to space being available) to change your bookings. Contact the organisers for up to date information. If you wish to speak to the organisers please call the above number and ask for Nick or Sue. If necessary (and we may be out in the hills) please leave a message on the answering machine. Refunds for cancelled bookings may be made at the organisers discretion depending on the planning commitments as on most events the bus seats, leaders and any equipment needed are pre-allocated (see below).


These are planned and recce'd in advance. For reasons outwith the organiser's control or other such as a slower or faster than expected group pace, severe weather, or delay due to injury it may be necessary to alter the route either in advance or during the day. Such changes are not made lightly but will be subject to the professional judgment of the leaders. Your safety is in their hands.

Walk Numbers

For reasons of safety and logistics there are limited places on most walks. It is essential, therefore, that you pre-book your walks to avoid disappointment! Please remember that on popular walks places not taken up may prevent someone else from participating and also impacts on bus and leader allocations.

Walk Grading

It should be noted that all strenuous routes will require a good pace to be averaged of around 4km/h.

The distances and difficulty are for guidance only, if you have any queries about the walks or indeed any other matter please contact the organisers. We have tried to grade the walks to give you a good guide to the conditions and hence level of effort required for each walk. They have been based on Naismith's rule.

Easy indicates a short distance and little ascending/descending on good ground for up to 2 or 3 hours, or distances up to 10km/6 miles on relatively level ground.

Moderate indicates distances up to 13km/8miles ascending a total of approx 400m or 1200ft across good ground or tracks, with a duration of between 2 to 5 hours.

Strenuous indicates distances up to 16km/10miles, ascending approx 400m/1200ft across varied ground, with a duration of approx 5 to 6 hours.

Very Strenuous indicates distances over 16km/10miles ascending to 900m above sea level and higher across rough ground, with a duration of over 7 hours.

Extremely Strenuous indicates distances over 20km/12miles ascending in excess of 1000m across rough ground, with a duration of over 8 hours, and will expect a pace of at least 4 km/h to be maintained for a long duration by the group and ascending at around 45 secs for every 10m.

Varied ground may include some heather, peat hags, bogs, boulder fields, scree and/or river crossing (though not necessarily all). Rough ground may include significant distances in these conditions.


The Royal Hotel will be offering a reduced bed and breakfast rate for this year's festival at £27.50 (single occupancy is an extra £7.50). If you are staying in the Royal for 7 days then a ticket for the Cateran BBQ is provided free. Evening meals and packed lunches also available so you don’t need to go far. Non-resident participants can also take advantage of this and also arrange breakfast, but they must be pre-booked with the Hotel staff. Royal Hotel bookings must be done through the event organisers. If you wish to arrange your own accommodation or if all the package spaces have been taken then please contact the Tourist Information Centre:

Tourist Information Centre

26 Wellmeadow


Tel: 01250 872960


Fax: 01250 873701

PH10 6AS



In addition to pre-booking your walks, you (and each member of your group) will need to register before each one. This must be done prior to boarding the bus. Registration is vitally important so that we have a record of who is on which walk, and so that the Walk Leader has a checklist to make sure no one is left behind. Registration will take place in the Royal Hotel from half an hour before the walks are scheduled to leave. Registration for the walk closes just before the bus leaves.


This year with the change in host venue we have also been able to provide parking facilities. These are located in the playground of Hill Primary School app 100m up the hill from the Royal Hotel, and is available from the evening of Friday 3rd October onwards. If staying in the vicinity of the Royal Hotel and/or for several days please park at the rear of the area. Parking space at the Royal Hotel is limited and will be used for emergency vehicles and bus turning only. Please ensure that you have parked your car by 08:30 in the morning and do not need it before 17:00 as the gates will be locked. Alternative parking is available in the Welton Road area adjacent to the Wellmeadow On street parking is very limited elsewhere.


Packed lunches are available from the Royal Hotel if pre-booked the night before, or alternatively can be bought or made up from the numerous eating establishments and shops in Blairgowrie. There are no special arrangements for meals during the walks. The Royal Hotel also offers bar suppers, which if booked in the morning will be available following your return to minimise waiting.


Those taking part in the Blairgowrie & East Perthshire Walking Festival do so at their own risk. The organisers and sponsors of the event shall not be liable for any accident or injury, however caused. You are advised to check your own personal accident cover, before taking part.

Vulnerable Adults or Young People

The nature of hillwalking potentially involves leaders or other participants in providing close assistance to others. For everybody's protection those people classified as 'vulnerable adults' or young people under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an appropriate carer or responsible adult.


Please do not smoke when on any of the walks – out of consideration for others taking part, and to avoid undue risk of fire. Please also be aware that smoking in enclosed public places is prohibited and subject to different legislation than in England and Wales.


Much as we like them, obedient and friendly though they can be, we have to point out that dogs are not allowed on Festival walks out of consideration for others. This does not apply to guide dogs accompanying registered blind or deaf walkers.


The cost of each walk is as shown on the booking form. The walk fees include return transport from the Festival Office at the Royal Hotel in Blairgowrie where appropriate. Please ensure that your payment for bookings is sent to the organisers before 1st September, as after this date any unconfirmed places will be offered to those on the reserve lists. Bookings after this date must be accompanied by payment.


Please note: parking places are very limited at the starting point of most walks. Not only that but many do not start and end at the same place and may be subject to unforeseen change! So to avoid congestion or other logistical problems on and just off quiet rural roads we have provided buses.


We recognise that under normal circumstances we may provide a refund for cancellations. Unfortunately after August 1st this will not be possible as the various venues, transport bookings, leader allocations, and other planning matters will have been made. We apologise for any inconvenience or distress this may cause. Participants may request a transfer to another walk or ticketed event subject to space, and may also exchange a booking with someone else, as all of our bookings are transferable. But please contact the organisers in advance and we will do our best to provide you with an alternative.


Please note that for High Level or Strenuous walks full hill walking gear is mandatory, a suggested kit-list as listed later. All walks will require appropriate clothing for the anticipated weather conditions and a minimum of 3-season boots are strongly recommended.


Any medical conditions should be advised to the organisers and leaders before each walk as many will be going into remote areas where assistance is not necessarily immediately forthcoming.


The following Ordnance Survey maps cover walks in the Festival programme:

Explorer 1:25,000 scale

Landranger 1:50,000

379 - Dunkeld, Aberfeldy & Glen Almond

43 - Braemar to Blair Atholl

380 - Dundee & Sidlaw Hills

44 - Ballater, Glen Clova & surounding area

381 - Blairgowrie, Kirriemuir and Glamis

53 - Blairgowrie & Forest of Alyth

386 - Blair Atholl & Pitlochry

387 - Glen Shee & Braemar

388 - Lochnagar, Glen Muick & Glen Clova


Walk 13 Landranger 51, Explorer 378

Walk 32 Landranger 52

Walk 21 Landranger 54

You should carry at least the following equipment:

· Windproof/waterproof (preferably breathable) shell over-jacket

· Windproof/waterproof (preferably breathable) shell over-trousers that can be put on without removing footwear

· Waterproof hat

· Gloves

· Personal first aid kit

· Medication (if required)

· Snack

· Drinks, at least 1 litre of water or similar is recommended, the tops of hills do not have reliable drinking water. You should also have warm drinks with you.

Optional additional equipment:

· Map

· Guide book

· Notebook and pen/pencil

· Mobile phone (switched off or on silent)

· Camera

· Binoculars

· Trekking poles, two should be used.

All clothing should be sufficient to suit the anticipated conditions, fleece pullover or similar should be carried or worn. Drinking materials should also suit the expected weather, it should be noted that even in the warmer seasons it is possible to suffer from hypothermia, or dehydration in cold weather. All spare clothing should be contained in a sealed dry-bag, as no rucksack is totally waterproof.

Local (around Blairgowrie area up to 150m asl and up to 2 hours duration)

Stout walking shoes/boots

Rucksack up to 15 litres containing the above equipment:

Low Level (up to 300m asl) up to 2 to 3 hours walk duration

Two/three season walking boots, wearing appropriate fleece, pullover etc,

Rucksack up to 25 litres containing the above equipment and also:

· Gaiters

· Spare socks

· Packed lunch and warm drink or the means to make a drink during meal stops

· Pen-knife

· Whistle

· Optional: Small head torch

· Optional: solo bivvy-bag/shelter

High Level (above 500m asl) or an extended day (over 3 hours and/or more than 1 hour walk from a telephone)

Three season hill-walking boots, carrying or wearing fleece, gloves, waterproof hat, and gaiters.

Rucksack app 25 - 30litres containing the above equipment and also:

· Spare gloves

· Spare fleece

· Spare hat

· Drinks, consider at least ½ litre per hour of water or similar

· Food for additional meals or snacks

· Small head torch and spare batteries

· Solo bivvy-bag/shelter

(Remember that the weight of a small stove and gas canister is similar to a flask and heats up far more water than can be carried in that flask).