We first reviewed "The Great Glen Way: Fort William to Inverness" by Paddy Dillon back in 2007, and came to the conclusion that it was "an attractive, eminently readable, and very useful guide." With the publication of the 2016 edition that conclusion holds true, only more so. It has been extensively re-written and updated, and is rather thicker, and benefits from Cicerone's brighter modern design. Most importantly, however, it benefits from the addition of a separate 44 page 1:25,000 route map booklet which contains all the Ordnance Survey maps you need to complete the Great Glen Way, in a highly convenient format. The changes are more than enough to justify a recommendation that the Second Edition is a thoroughly worthwhile purchase, even for owners of the earlier edition.
The Great Glen Way offers walkers the chance to enjoy a low-level route from coast to coast at almost any time of the year. It measures 124km or 79 miles in length and its course includes easy, level stretches alongside the Caledonian Canal, undulating forest tracks, lochside paths, old drove roads and military roads, as well as contrasting stretches over heather moorlands and through city suburbs. The route is an ideal introduction to long-distance walking, with a range of facilities along the way. Walkers can enjoy the scenery and wildlife, delve into the history of the Highland clans, visit castles, or keep an eye open for the elusive Loch Ness Monster!
Paddy Dillon's excellent guide contains background about the walk and the areas passed through, plus photographs of significant sights along the way and coloured mapping sourced from the Ordnance Survey of each of the sections of the walk (in addition to the maps in the separate booklet). The Great Glen Way is normally walked from south-west to north-east, and guides to the walk usually assume you will be walking in that direction. A particularly intriguing aspect of this book is that it gives route descriptions for walkers intending to cover the Great Glen Way in either direction. As a result this book is both a useful guide for anyone travelling in the normal direction, but an essential resource for anyone considering walking it the opposite way.