A helicopter airlifts stone for the Postie’s Path. © Anne Campbell/Coigach & Assynt Living Landscape by Michelle Henley, Scottish Wildlife Trust Reserves Project Officer A centuries-old…
The Postie’s Path is a spectacular coastal walking route linking the communities of Coigach and Ullapool, passing through Ben More Coigach, Scottish Wildlife Trust’s largest wildlife reserve. It stretches for about 7 miles/11 km along the coast between Achduart and Blughasary, taking in magnificent coastal views. It is one of three traditional routes that people used to take around Ben Mor Coigach – or around ‘the rock’ (A’Chreag) which is the traditional name given to the hill. The path is mainly a mountain route passing through wild land. The two more accessible ends of the path are more widely used, offering short walks to places of interest like the impressive Iron Age hill fort at Dun Canna.
The path needed considerable repair and improvements to increase its accessibility to a wider range of users while protecting the coastal environment and natural beauty of the area. The two ends of the path needed to be repaired and upgraded to give a good easy access path. The mountain section of the path needed clearer way-marking, helping to maintain the path in a suitable wild land condition whilst helping avoid walkers losing their way.
Now thanks to funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, through CALLP, from Ramblers Scotland and EB Scotland, the Trust has been able to lead a project to make significant upgrades to the path.
The path improvement work was completed by ACT Heritage and managed by the Outdoor Access Trust for Scotland. Local stone was used for the repairs to be in keeping with the landscape and this had to be transported by helicopter to key areas along the path. A number of waymarkers were also airlifted and installed to help guide walkers. Scottish Wildlife Trust has installed two interpretation panels to help visitors to discover more about this fascinating area.
The work forms part of a suite of CALLP projects to improve access around the area, including upgrades to the Suilven and Quinag mountain paths, woodland walks, and guides and interpretation to help people get the most from their experience.
Scottish Wildlife Trust staff and volunteers will continue to look after the path and carry out important maintenance work whenever it is needed. The Postman’s Path takes you through a wonderful landscape full of local history and abundant wildlife. These footpath improvements mean the route is now safer and easier for people to navigate, but as with all upland paths, it is still important that walkers are properly equipped for a full mountain day when taking this route.