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Giving back to the trails: Applecross

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Here in the Highlands of Scotland there are thousands of kilometres of truly remote singletrack trails that play host to our Scottish adventures. These trails link communities and stretch over wild landscapes that are perfect for adventurous riders.

With hand built drainage ditches, underground pipe work, and rock water bars, our trails are built to withstand the toughest weather Scotland can throw at them. However, they still need some love and attention from time to time. As the moorland vegetation takes hold and the rain erodes, it’s no mean feat to maintain and keep these trails open and fun to ride.

That’s why we recently teamed up with Developing Mountain biking in Scotland (DMBinS) and the Applecross Community Trust to carry out some maintenance on a trail that we’ve ridden for many years now, and was in need of some TLC.

Matt worked with Ruaridh from DMBinS and Jess from the Applecross Community Trust to figure out a plan for the Kenmore Path, then rounded up our local guides and a few other eager volunteers (including photographer and Skye local Dan Milner) for a day of hard work in the hills!



The Kenmore to Applecross trail is a 15.5 km point to point trail that we ride as part of our Highland Odyssey and coast-to-coast adventures. Our band of merry men and women hiked and biked along the trail with tools and set to work repairing waterlogged sections and diverting water. It’s amazing how much work goes into each and every meter of trail. With each fleeting second of singletrack riding, you’ve also covered tens, if not hundreds, of hours of hard work!

Most of our crew drove out to Applecross and met up with Jess and Isabelle from the local community, gathered up tools, then rode and walked up the trail to the first point identified for work. The rest of the team rode in from the Kenmore side and took up post further along the trail.

These sections of trail had been completely water-logged from all the rain over winter, but we started digging in bright sunshine. This didn’t last for long however, as the strong westerly wind blew in heavy rain and even a shower of hailstones. By the end of the day, we were back to full sun. Standard.


“It is important for us as a Trust to work with other organisations that share our aims to look after the landscape around us. It was a pleasure to have Matt from H+I Adventures, and his enthusiastic volunteers join us to undertake path repairs here on the Applecross peninsula. The Kenmore Path is widely used by hikers, runners and mountain bikers, and naturally suffers some wear and tear over time. We have Isabelle, who works continuously on our paths and trails but it is a big job, and so joining up with H+I Adventures to have this Dig Day has made a real difference. Even just one section of one trail makes a difference; to the conservation of the landscape, and to the local residents and visitors who use the trail.”

 – Jessica Whistance Marketing Manager for Applecross Trust



“It’s brilliant to see a prominent Scottish mountain bike business collaborating with a community to help maintain the routes used by mountain bikers, thanks to H+I and Applecross Trust for making it happen. All these small pieces of work add up to make a significant difference to the state of the trails we ride, helping to improve them for other visitors and communities. It would be great to hear about similar partnerships that are helping to look after our trails!”

– Ruaridh Watt DMBinS


Here at H+I adventures we believe it’s important to give back to the landscapes we operate in and to work with local communities to repair and sustain our trails. Even in Scotland, where we have a long history of mountain biking and well-established, open access laws, we find that some people have a poor view of mountain bikers, so we strive to be a positive representation of the mountain bike community as we explore the Scottish Highlands on two wheels.

A big thank you to Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland and the Applecross Community Trust for having us along. And to all the fab people who joined us and made the day such a success: Matt Lowell, Jodie Standen, Alex Glasgow, Alexi Hall, Tom Young, Kevin Henderson, and Dan Milner.

We look forward to returning later this year to enjoy the warm welcomes and amazing views at Applecross Bay!

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