Here are some comments from some of the people who have come on the journey on one of my Scottish Wilderness Walks.
“I signed up for the West Highland Way walk because I like to hike, I wanted to get to know Scotland, and celebrate making it through the last few years of my life. I got so much more than I bargained for.
As a solo, female traveler, it was comforting to know that I would not have to worry about transfers, dodgy lodging or dining alone. Bill did a fabulous job organizing the resting portions of the tour. The hotels were welcoming, the food delicious, and eating with like-minded walkers was always interesting and fun.
However, a person can get those things on their own or with any standard tour. What they can’t get is a walk led by you, Gentle James. From the first moment I began thinking about the trek to the last, bittersweet day we crossed into Milngavie, you were encouraging, inspiring, knowledgeable, and entertaining. You never hesitated to answer any questions I had about equipment, ability or Scotland. You made each one of us feel like a special member of our group. Yet, at the same time, you gave us our own space to experience the incredible power of nature. I know I am not the only one walking away from our week with a deeper understanding of your country’s rich, proud history and a sense of awe for its landscapes.
If anyone is considering taking one of your wilderness walks, tell them to stop thinking and just sign up. Like John Muir says, they will walk away from it with more than they seek.
I will never forget my time with you and our fellow hikers. Thank you for organizing it, inviting me and guiding me to a place of beauty, both in nature and my soul.”
– Lori Larson, Nebraska, USA – April 2016
Heartfelt thanks to you and Bill for making the West Highland Way our best trip yet to Scotland! Bill’s organizational skills and attention to detail made for seamless transitions along the journey with pleasant accommodations throughout. The food was excellent with plenty of vegetarian options. Your personal knowledge of the trail, the wildlife, and the history of the area, really takes this experience to the next level. Your passion for what you do is obvious and contagious and makes for a historical, ecological, mystical and genuine highland experience. Thanks for making our 25th wedding anniversary celebration a fond memory that will last a lifetime!
– Muckle Scott and Ellen the Viking
“In April 2013 I signed up for the Gentle James West Highland Way hiking trip. This was my first visit to Scotland and it was absolutely the best trip of my life. James did a great job organizing the trip and selecting the lodging. We walked through the most amazing scenery including the mountains of Glencoe, Rannoch Moor and Loch Lomond. James made these areas come alive with his knowledge of the history and people that once lived there. At night we stayed in historic inns and experienced authentic Scottish food and entertainment. All the details were taken care of including transportation for a truly hassle free vacation. I highly recommend taking this trip with James for a vacation you will treasure the rest of your life.”
– Lesley Russ
“Gentle James West Highland Way walk was dead brilliant! Every detail was thoughtfully prepared. The route planning, the lodging, the food and transport all taken care of so that all I had to do was lace up my boots and enjoy the wonder that is Scotland. James’ intimate knowledge of the land and its rich history made for an adventure of a lifetime not to be missed!! ”
– Lee Ann
“Having traveled and worked along side James the past nine years beginning with the band Albannach at many festivals then with the Bronach Tours to Scotland and the West Highland Way Walks, I can easily say that he is a man of multiple layers. Each layer – whether as the frontman of Albannach where he exhibits a forceful even aggressive stage persona to the quiet intellectual with a passion for his native land; to the teacher and consummate hiker eager to share his love of the outdoors, the mysteries and the history of Scotland as he guides and explores. To walk the hills and glens of Scotland with James not only affords the hiker the opportunity to see Scotland as the majority of its visitors never will but also with a host that is all consumed with imparting his knowledge and love of the land with every step. Given the opportunity to walk and hike with James is something that should not be passed by.”
– Bill Reid – East of the Hebrides