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Selected Trips

    Ailsa Armstrong

    Enthusiastic | Creative | Cheerful

    Mini Bio

    Having been brought up on one of Scotland’s beautiful west coast islands, I have always treasured the opportunity to explore Scotland’s wild places and this continues to bring me much pleasure today.

    I particularly enjoy walking in the mountains and completed all of Scotland’s Munros some years ago. I also get a great deal of pleasure from the long distance, lower level, walks Scotland has to offer and continually seek out new adventures.

    Travel has not just been limited to Scotland as I have been fortunate to have walked, climbed and ski toured in many parts of the world, although there is always something special about coming home to the Cairngorms.

    Place to Play

    I love heading off to explore and experience the wild places of the Highlands mountains, but also the beautiful low level walking routes and coastal paths. My perfect day is always complete when I come across a coffee shop and/or gallery with local Scottish artisan products in unusual places.

    Not a lot of people know this

    I am a keen mosaic artist and was delighted to have had a piece of work displayed in the National Gallery of Scotland.

    Qualifications Read More
    • Mountain Leader Award – Summer 2004
    • BASP Outdoor Emergency First Aid
    Experience Read More

    I have been trekking, mountaineering and ski touring throughout Scotland, Europe and further afield for over 35 years. At times in guided groups and also as the leader with friends and colleagues. Currently one of my ambitions is to complete the final sections of the GR5 Geneva to Nice walking route.

    Biggest Adventure Read More

    Having travelled and trekked throughout the world my biggest adventure was the trek to Snow Lake and over the Hipsar La into the Hunza valley in Northern Pakistan. This is the most remote experience I have ever had, culminating in a road trip back along the Karakorum Highway to Islamabad.

    Specialist Subject Read More

    For me I enjoy researching the areas I am about to visit, knowing the history and specific details of what it offers.

    Adventurer's Stories about Ailsa

    Ailsa was the best! Friendly, knowledgeable, supportive.

    Stephen Lilley
    Wilderness Walking - Outer Hebrides & Skye
    Reviewed on 02/09/2023

    Ailsa is an excellent guide. She has a wonderful sense of humor and is very kind, accommodating, and also very knowledgeable about the region including flora, fauna, geography, and history. Quickly she became aware of clients needs and preferences, factored in changing weather forecasts, and provided flexible options for hiking as well as support and encouragement during the excursion. My husband and I celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary during the trip and Ailsa gave us a lovely card and lavender and tweed sachet to commemorate the occasion. We appreciated her thoughtfulness!

    Mary Lilley
    Wilderness Walking - Outer Hebrides & Skye
    Reviewed on 02/09/2023

    Ailsa was an exceptional guide and driver. She always reviewed our activities for the next and ensured that everyone was comfortable with the plan and gave an alternative walk or activity for anyone who wasn't. Ailsa also drove us to our B&B or hotel when we returned to Inverness because it was raining again.

    Janice Cooper
    Wilderness Walking - Outer Hebrides & Skye
    Reviewed on 29/08/2023

    Ailsa was an absolutely perfect guide for this tour and group. I was amazed this was only her 2nd tour in the Orkney Islands. Her mastery of the schedule and logistics, avoidance of cruise ship tours, and keeping the group on schedule with the appropriate flexibility was flawless. Knowledgeable of the area and the trails, safe/skilled driving, good mix of stories history, and being in the background to let the guests enjoy their vacation. She is genuine good person and joy to tour with. Just fantastic...

    Kevin Gonzalez
    Wilderness Walking - The Orkney Islands
    Reviewed on 21/08/2023

    Ailsa was an excellent guide. Everything went smoothly due to her diligent planning.

    Lacie Morrison
    Wilderness Walking - The Orkney Islands
    Reviewed on 04/08/2023

    Ailsa made the trip and could not have been more wonderful. Well organized, adaptable, flexible when possible, very patient and always engaging. She provided thorough information on our sites throughout the trip and when she didn't know something, the answer was provided by the next day. She kept to necessary timelines without us feeling we were on any timelines. We were briefed at night on the next day's adventure and debriefed at the end of the trip. I also enjoyed that she had dinners with us for more personal interactions.

    Ailsa is also a fabulous driver. i still can't believe her back-ups onto ferries!

    Cheryl Gillespie
    Wilderness Walking - The Orkney Islands
    Reviewed on 04/08/2023

    Besides that fact that we all pronounced and spelled her name wrong, our guide was very patient with us! I like the way she just let us all get to know one another without any formal "presentation". By the time we were at the ferry, we'd all started to fit in together. Her way of managing the group was wise and warm. We always knew she would work things out for the best. Our group included a very wide range of physical abilities and interests and I think we all were able to do our thing---under her experienced leadership. Best of all, she had a trick up her sleeve none of us will ever forget--the source of belly laughs, even to this day. Also, she is a good flower-finder.

    Sandy Backlund
    Wilderness Walking - The Orkney Islands
    Reviewed on 31/07/2023

    Ailsa is a very skilled guide, kind, generous, caring, knowledgeable and a very good people manager

    Janece Falconer
    Wilderness Walking - The Orkney Islands
    Reviewed on 26/07/2023

    Ailsa was wonderful! She was knowledgeable, an extremely good driver and great fun. She was also particularly kind to me as I get a lot of pain and have balance problems going downhill on rough ground. She never made me feel that I was being nuisance.
    She has promised to give the leader on my next holiday a heads up on my abilities.

    Jenny Farthing
    Wilderness Walking - The Orkney Islands
    Reviewed on 24/07/2023

    Ailsa is an absolute gem, the most delightful laugh. We miss her!! She was extremely accommodating, knowledgeable and passionate about her job and country.

    Bonnie O'Hagan
    Wilderness Walking - The Orkney Islands
    Reviewed on 04/06/2023

    It would be a pleasure to travel with Ailse again. She paid great attention to detail in planning our daily itineraries, taking travel time and weather into account. Her evening briefs were thorough and essential to our preparation for each day’s adventure. She is knowledgeable, has a great sense of humor and is also a very good driver!

    Judy Tart
    Wilderness Walking - The Orkney Islands
    Reviewed on 25/05/2023

    Ailsa was an excellent guide—organized, knowledgeable, kind, great sense of humor—and all around lovely human being!

    Marion Peleo
    Wilderness Walking - Outer Hebrides & Skye
    Reviewed on 04/05/2023

    Both guides (Joe & Ilesa - sorry about the spelling) were wonderful. They were both very good listeners, knowledgeable and made the walks very enjoyable.

    Nancy McClew
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 13/08/2022

    We had an unusual situation in that our guides were switched, but it was great. For a young guy, Joe handled middle-aged folk perfectly. He is such a nice, knowledgeable person and a real asset to your team.

    Kimberly Balla
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 10/08/2022

    Both guides on our trip were kind, informed and helpful.

    Adreena Lammens
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 08/08/2022

    Ailsa and Joe were excellent guides. Very knowledgeable and friendly

    Robert Holland
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 08/08/2022

    As mentioned being firmer re driving distraction. Making sure they are never using phone when driving
    Both really good at spotting the awkward guest issue and trying to help. Joes knowledge particularly good

    Judith Bodmer
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 08/08/2022

    Alisa was amazing .. she was knowledgeable she was helpful she was on her game 100% of the time. She was able to accommodate most all of the groups wishes. Absolutely stellar guide

    Jennifer Allen
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 06/06/2022

    Ailsa was wonderful in so many ways. She really had fun with us I think and we absolutely enjoyed her company. Please see previous comments for more raving. :)

    Shawn Morningstar
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 06/06/2022

    Ours was not an easy group to manage (very different walking levels) but Ailsha somehow was able to keep us all happy and we all had the exercise we wanted.

    Hanna Makkonen
    Wilderness Walking - Isle of Skye
    Reviewed on 30/05/2022

    Alicia is an excellent driver. It was her first trip to Orkney so there were occasional problems finding the route. She was very caring and was very kind and helpful when I got a dental infection during the week. She fitted in with the group well and organised things well.

    Jane Pilgrim
    Wilderness Walking - The Orkney Islands
    Reviewed on 23/05/2022

    Ailsa is a very nice person whose organisation was seamless and her easy going manner made for a fun group which got on well. Nothing to fault and she took a bit of teasing in her stride! Could not have asked for a better guide.

    Cordelia Miller
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 28/09/2021

    Ailsa was an amazing guide, so supportive, helpful and friendly. She made the trip an amazing adventure.

    Lisa Howell
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 27/09/2021

    Ailsa was just a complete joy to be with. She made the trip fun, and made us feel we could cope with all of the challenges ahead. I will never forget her interpretations of a 'wee traverse' or 'just around the corner' (much different to mine!!) I would not hesitate booking another trip that included Ailsa as my guide!

    Lesley Bertram
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 24/09/2021

    Ailsa is lovely and friendly but also professional. She is thorough and very organised. We all loved her.

    Kakai Marr
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 22/09/2021

    Ailsa is a lovely lady: organised, knowledgeable and thoughtful! We could not have asked for more (it was also nice to have a guide that wasn't too young). We could not have asked for a better guide!

    Susan Long
    Wilderness Walking - The West Highland Way
    Reviewed on 16/09/2021

    Book a trip with Ailsa

    Trip / DepartureAvailabilityStatusPriceBook
    Wilderness Walking – The Isle of Skye
    11th May - 17th May 2024 Women only departure
    6 place(s) leftCONFIRMED£2,575Book Now
    Wilderness Walking – Cairngorms National Park & Royal Deeside
    19th May - 25th May 2024
    7 place(s) leftUNCONFIRMED£2,845Book Now
    Wilderness Walking – Outer Hebrides and Skye
    6th Jul - 12th Jul 2024 Women only departure
    8 place(s) leftUNCONFIRMED£2,575Book Now
    Wilderness Walking – Autumn in Perthshire
    30th Sep - 4th Oct 2024
    8 place(s) leftUNCONFIRMED£1,475Book Now
    Wilderness Walking – Autumn Highlands
    26th Oct - 30th Oct 2024
    8 place(s) leftUNCONFIRMED£1,475Book Now

    Make Trip Private

    Sometimes it's nice to get family and friends together and travel privately for some quality time. This means you benefit from all the features of the group departure, including hand-picked accommodation and expert local guides and we'll take care of it all. Then you can make your choice of departures dates and we'll get back to you to finalise the details.

    We work together with our team of guides to decide which departures they lead each year. As part of that, guides provide available dates that they are free to be booked. This means that any of the dates you see in the first field of the form below, could be perfect for your private departure or customised tour.

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