For my main holiday I had an all line rail rover ticket for 14 days. I won't go into all the travelling I did, but one of the highlights was a trip to Fort William and Mallaig on the West Highland Line.
I left Preston on Monday October 1st. The train was the 8.53 Pendolino service to Glasgow. I was travelling first class!. There were just two of us in the coach I was in. On the journey I had a complimentary bacon baguette and toast, not too mention tea and later coffee. To show the power of the Pendolino it took just under 30 mins from Carlisle to Beattock Summit - in the days of steam trains that would have been seen as impossible.
After arriving in Glasgow I made my way to Glasgow Queen St for the 12.20 service to Mallaig. It was full. The journey was interesting as I thought it would be. The journey along side Loch Lomond was rather good. However the further north we went the weather slowly got worse. At Crianlarach the train divided. After the station, the route is spectacular, especially before Bridge of Orchy, were the train makes detour under some mighty Muntos. The train the goes on to Rannoch Moor, which is flat, bleak and desolate, especially in rain. The train stopped at Rannoch station for a few mins, so I managed a couple of photos.
From there the rain on to Fort William and then Mallaig. As the train windows were rather dirty, It was difficult to take pictures!
I spent the night at a rather basic Bed and Breakfast in Mallaig. I them returned to Glasgow. The weather was very poor most of the way, low cloud and heavy rain. However at Glenfinnan we met a steam train. Most of the West Highland line is single track, Glenfinnan is one of the few places we trains can pass each other.
The whole West Highland Line is a major feat of engineering and was well worth the journey. I might even do it again!