The Waterfall Diaries Part 7- The River Etive
On this installment of the Waterfall Diaries I’m taking you to The River Etive which is a personal favourite of mine, in fact it’s probably my favourite place in the world and whilst there are a couple of articles on this site about Glen Etive (one by myself) with this being The Waterfall Diaries I will be concentrating on the water.
For sheer concentration of Waterfalls The River Etive must be the ultimate for a Waterfall chaser like me because in a 6 mile stretch of river the number of waterfalls is just about into double figures, and that’s just the ones you can see from road before the road turns into the forest section !
Let’s start at the beginning, well the beginning for the sake of this article…. The first major fall (there are countless little falls flowing into the river) can be seen from the A82 itself and looks relatively close and easy to get to…it’s not, and the trek across the boggy moorland is tough going and fraught with the danger of ending up in water up to your thighs(my boots have yet to dry out), this however is forgotten when you reap the reward,shown in the picture you see of the glorious Buachaille Etive Mor and this is only the start !!. This is truly Scotland in a nutshell, it’s as close to heaven on earth as i’ve found and since first visiting I have told anyone who will listen about the unbridled joy I feel when i’m there, how do you put that into words ?Well for me the answer is simple, I’m a photographer so it’s the pictures that speak for me.
If that was the end of the article I for one would be happy ,but, from here you travel along the Glen Etive road and from here on in it’s waterfall central and it seems like ever 200 yards there is another drop off or waterfall flowing down from the mountains and it is my intention in the future to map this river in photographs and i’m getting there slowly but surely.
One of the most spectacular falls is down near a bridge which offers an amazing view of the mountains as seen in the second photograph and this view is one I could look at for hours and I have been known to sit by these falls and just relax, it is one of the most peaceful places I could ever imagine and the best thing is it is about 30metres from the road !
Getting to the river is relatively easy, The A82 is the main road from Fort William and the climber friendly Tyndrum and the Glen Etive road is situated between Glencoe Village and the Glencoe Ski Centre and if you’ve driven that road before you will have driven past it and not even noticed it’s there.
This road and river means so much to so many varied groups of people from the obvious hillwalkers and climbers to canoeists who risk the dangers of the whitewater to partake in their hobby but one of the more surprising things to me is the wildlife that roams freely and without fear and with me being a city boy it is amazing to see deer just wandering about and within touching distance and last time I visited I was by Loch Etive at sunrise only to look down to feel and see a badger walking over my feet on his way for a morning snack, it’s that kind of place.
As with all of the Scottish Highlands the weather can change suddenly from being pleasant to very heavy snow in a matter of minutes so please anticipate the conditions and take precautions when planning out a day because being stuck out there is not going to end well for you if you don’t have proper boots and warm waterproof clothing, so stay safe and please remember to TAKE ONLY PHOTOGRAPHS AND LEAVE ONLY FOOTPRINTS !!
As always for more photographs of the Scottish Highlands visit my website at …….Davie Hudson Photography or alternatively for photographs specific to the Glen Etive area visit Glen Etive Road Pictures