Booking lines for the 2024 Arran Mountain Festival are now open. Click here to book.
For any booking related queries, please contact our bookings provider Arran Adventure on or tel. 01770 303347.

Goatfell for Beginners

Always wanted to climb Goatfell but haven't had the confidence to do so? Or maybe you haven’t hiked up Arran’s highest peak for a long time but would like to scale it once more? You might need that extra little bit of motivation, you might worry that you’ll get lost, or you might just lack the confidence to head out there on your own. There are lots of reasons why you might not have ventured up yet, or haven’t been up for a long time, but the Arran Mountain Festival is here to help!

This guided hike will be a fairly leisurely-paced walk with plenty of opportunities to stop and take in the beautiful scenery all around you. Our qualified walk leaders bring a wealth of experience and knowledge and will tailor the experience to ensure that everyone enjoys their day on Goatfell, with the ultimate aim of reaching the summit and taking in the epic views from the top.

What you’ll need:
  • A reasonable level of fitness (see below for the walk stats – you will have to climb Goatfell’s 874m from nearly sea level)
  • The walking kit on the list below. If you need gear advice, our friendly local outdoor shop Arran Active will be able to help you out!
What you don’t need:
  • Hillwalking experience!
What we’ll bring:
  • All the encouragement, motivation and the friendly, supportive and inclusive environment that hopefully will enable you to succeed.

 | Overview


Highest Point Gained

Total Ascent

Walk Duration

Rough mountain paths, steep ascents and descents, in parts with loose gravelly rock underfoot. High rocky steps in places. A crossing of a Burn with no bridge via uneven stones.

Technical Rating
Easy scrambling, elements of exposure, some rough terrain.

Endurance Rating
Sustained steep ascents and descents, long-distance, stamina required, suitable for fit walkers. Have you had recent experience of walking for 6-8 hours? Have you recently walked up (and down) a mountain of over 1000m (3000ft) in height without physical distress? Do you regularly play an aerobic sport pretty much every week? If your answer is "No", we'd guess you'd be happier doing a walk rated a level lower than the one you’ve just read! As noted previously, we're into FUN so we don't want you to miss out by overdoing it.


Saturday 18 May 2024

Meeting Time

Meeting Place

Festival Hub at the Auchrannie Playbarn. Transport to the start & finish of this walk is provided from there.

Booking Link

 | Photo Gallery

 | Walk description

The walk starts from the picturesque clachan of High Corrie and follows a meandering path through woods up towards Coire Lan, climbing steeply on rocky steps initially. Views soon open up to the sea below, so expect frequent stops to take a breather and admire the scenery.

The path gradient then eases somewhat, giving the leg muscles some welcome respite. At the foot of spectacular Coire Lan, it is soon time to cross the Corrie burn. Whilst this involves some balancing on boulders, the guides will be on hand to assist if necessary.

A sustained steeper section follows, clambering up rocky steps and slabs to eventually reach the ridge of Meall Breac. Again, the more height is gained, the more breath-taking views open up and beg to be admired during little rest stops along the way. Our walk leaders have an incredible wealth of local knowledge between them, and hopefully will be able to take your mind of some of the more physically demanding sections of the ascent!

The gradient finally eases off again for a while, following the ridge to a cairn at the Goatfell shoulder where the main path is joined for the final steep ascent to the summit. Again, this challenging section will be taken at a slow and steady pace with plenty of stops to look at the mountain scenery, spot wildlife and chat to guides and fellow walkers. If the weather is clear, the effort will be rewarded with stunning views across the Clyde to the east and the dramatic Arran mountains to the west.

Having enjoyed the thrill of reaching the summit, steps are retraced initially back down to the shoulder. Again, the pace will be slow and steady on the steep rocky path. From the shoulder, the main Goatfell path is taken down towards the forestry above Brodick Castle. The gradient from here is generally easier, with just the odd bit of steeper descent thrown in. Although downhill, this may still feel like a challenge for tired legs, albeit thankfully, the last of the day! The walk finishes at Cladach – celebratory Arran ice creams optional!

Route Profile

 | Advised Kit List

Essential hill gear

  • NO jeans – anyone wearing jeans will not be allowed to start the walk, and no refund will be possible
  • Stout hill walking boots
  • Appropriate walking trousers, top layers and fleece – preferably no cotton layers
  • Waterproof (not showerproof) trousers
  • Waterproof (not showerproof) jacket
  • Spare layers
  • Woollen or fleece hat
  • Gloves
  • Packed lunch and drink - please consider the use of re-useable water bottles and food wrapping.
  • Any personal medicines

Other recommended kit

  • Sun cream and insect repellent
  • Camera
  • Binoculars
  • Spare socks
  • Blister plasters

Booking lines for the 2024 Arran Mountain Festival are now open. Click here to book.
For any booking related queries, please contact our bookings provider Arran Adventure on or tel. 01770 303347.