The Morvern Peninsula is largely unheard of and a wild part of Scotland overlooked in favour of easier places to access which makes it a perfect location for a sea kayak expedition. Conditions can change in minutes and tides are rarely easy to predict. Circumnavigating the peninsula involves more than five days of paddling, which is why being guided by a local paddler makes for a more enjoyable and safer journey irrespective of your level of experience.
With four nights of wild camping from your kayak and over 100km of paddling, there are going to be hard days and there's no guarantee of completing the entire distance.
But that’s exactly what an adventure should be!
What is included?
You will need to be self-sufficient for food and equipment throughout the five days. We will have a high-quality water filtration pump with us which you may use. You can hire tents, kayaks, and other equipment from us should you need to and, if you would prefer a fully catered expedition, we can arrange that for you as long as there are a minimum of two and maximum of four people
Who will be guiding me?
You will be guided by Karl, head guide and owner of Otter Adventures, who lives in Strontian at the end (or start) point for this expedition. He has over 35 years of outdoor leadership and coaching experience, has circumnavigated Morvern several times, will tell stories about locations, both on and off the water, and know where the best camp spots are (decent ones are pretty limited).
NB: Please DO NOT book online as you will be asked to pay the full amount upfront. I’d prefer it if you call me and we have a chat first, then I will take a small deposit at the time of booking and the balance nearer the time. We offer discounts for clubs or groups and may extend the maximum number to six adults in some instances (minimum two people and not catered).
If the advertised dates do not suit you, please get in touch and we will endeavour to arrange dates that do.
This is a challenging expedition and not for beginners. You should have experience paddling on open water or sea in winds of F3-4 and waves approaching one meter as it is quite likely we’ll encounter these conditions at some point. Intermediate paddlers and above, in any kayaking discipline, should be fine. If in doubt, phone and have a chat with Karl before booking.
Some experience with wild camping and your own compact camping equipment is essential as you’ll be looking after your own equipment and food. We suggest bringing your own kayaking equipment, but tents and kayaks can be hired if required.
As this is a challenging expedition, the requirements are higher than a bespoke expedition. You will need:
- an above average level of fitness
- experience of kayaking in F3-4 winds and waves up to one meter
- to be comfortable in your own kayak or under 6'3" (190cm) and 16 stone (100 kg) if hiring our kayaks
- familiarity with outdoor living and wild-camping
- to be prepare to paddle hard on occasions, possibly for sustained periods
- to be 18 years or over
It is not an adventure for beginners. Sorry.
If you are unsure whether this is for you, please get in touch direct to discuss your suitability. If not, we can devise a bespoke five day sea kayak expedition for you.
We need a minimum of two people in order to run these expeditions. Our maximum is four, so group sizes will always be small.
What to bring
The following is a non-exhaustive list of what you should bring with you for this expedition unless you have hired equipment from us.
- Sea kayak and paddle
- Buoyancy aid (CE marked and less than 5 years old)
- Your preferred paddling clothing appropriate to the forecast weather conditions
- Appropriate tent
- Sleeping bag
- Sleeping mat
- Your own plate, mug bowl and cutlery
- Your own stove and cook set
- Food and snacks for five days
- Wash bag with biodegradable toilet paper and eco-friendly soap
- Small towel
- Spare shoes/sandals to wear on shore or waterproof socks to put under your paddling shoes
- Waterproof jacket & trousers to wear onshore
- If bringing anything electronic (e.g. phone), bring a battery pack or solar charger
- Debit card &/or cash
If hiring one of our kayaks, do remember that space is limited so choose small items where possible (especially sleeping bags and food). Packing things in lots of small dry bags makes things much easier than a few larger ones.
The route around Morvern is a linear journey with little flexibility other than distance covered each day. This is where a local guide really comes into their own as wild camping spots are very limited along most of the route.
You’ll be kayaking for five days, but three could be quite long days of 15-35 km. It really depends upon the winds and tides as to how far we need to paddle to get to the next wild camp spot - and there aren’t many decent ones along the way.
Should the winds be too strong, you may spend two nights (or more) in the same location. Flexibility is crucial for this adventurous expedition.
If time and tide are with us, you will discover a diverse peninsula and there may be an opportunity to explore the remote Loch Teacius as well as the narrow flows around the Isle of Carna where seals, otters and underwater creatures abound.
In an ideal scenario, the itinerary would be roughly as follows, but it will almost certainly be necessary to modify this as the weather dictates:
Day 1: Meet & greet, kit out and afternoon paddle to first wild camp on the shores of Loch Linnhe
Day 2: Paddle Loch Linnhe and, possibly, into Sound of Mull & wild camp
Day 3: A big day including the rest of the Sound of Mull and into Loch Sunart
Day 4: Hopefully a more relaxing day exploring Loch Teacius and Loch Sunart. Wild camp in Loch Sunart.
Day 5: Leisurely morning paddle to the head of Loch Sunart and finish point outside Otter Adventures.
NB: It may be preferable to reverse the planned route due to the winds and tides. Either way completion of the full circumnavigation is not guaranteed.
Online bookings by eola