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Devil o’ the Highlands Footrace 

2023 Race Handbook


Race Date: Saturday 12th August 2023

Start Time : 06:00am


Please note: Coach seats MUST be booked in advance, via Si Entries, by midnight on Sunday 30th July

2023 Race Information and FAQs

Friday registration: 7:00pm - 9:00pm at the Tyndrum Inn, Tyndrum, FK20 8RY

Saturday Registration: 4:15am - 5:30am at the Green Welly Stop, Tyndrum, FK20 8RY

Race Start: 6:00am from Brodie’s Store, Tyndrum (next to the Green Welly)

Race Finish: George V Park, Fort William, beside Lochaber Leisure Centre, PH33 6BU





This year we are again hosting a collection for Lochaber Community Foodbank at race registration and would like to ask that ALL RUNNERS bring some canned or packaged food items to donate. Read on for more info!



The Race Rules

  • Do what the marshals tell you. Always. At all times. And especially at road crossings.

  • Race numbers must be worn on your FRONT, and must be visible to marshals at all times

  • All runners must carry the listed mandatory kit items at all times

  • No running poles or other artificial aids. No dogs accompanying runners/support runners

  • No support crew assistance anywhere before Glencoe checkpoint

  • No support runners before Kinlochleven checkpoint at 11:30am

  • Absolutely NO LITTERING - carry your rubbish with you and deposit it at checkpoints

  • Limited earphone use is allowed - please read on for details of our earphone rules

  • If you decide to withdraw during the race, you MUST let us know about it before going home



Please note one more very important rule from the Devil o’ the Highlands Medical Team:


The casual race-day use of ibuprofen, diclofenac, naproxen, or any other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) is strictly forbidden. You must not use any of these drugs as a race-day painkiller. If we become aware that you are doing so, you will be disqualified. Please note that if you have an ongoing prescription for any of these medications, you should continue to take your usual dose but you must inform us about it in advance via email and you must be able to produce an in-date prescription packet if requested. Thank you.








Email address for all enquiries:



Race Weekend Schedule

Friday 11th August

7:00pm - 9:00pm: Race registration at the Tyndrum Inn, Tyndrum (FK20 8RY)


Saturday 12th August

4:00am: Private coaches leave Fort William Bus Station (PH33 6AN) for race start (must be booked in advance)

4:15am - 5:30am: Race registration at the Green Welly Stop, Tyndrum (FK20 8RY) 

4:15am - 5:45am: Bring drop bags to race start and put into checkpoint vehicles

4:15am - 5:45am: Bring kit bags (for finish at Fort William) to race start and put into finish line van

5:45am: Race Director's race briefing for runners, at the Green Welly Stop

6:00am: Race start. Run 42 miles to Fort William! 

12:00pm - 6:30pm: Hot home-made food, tea, coffee and other drinks in the marquee at the race finish

4:00pm-ish: Prizegiving at the race finish

6:00pm: Private coaches leave Fort William Race Finish (Lochaber Leisure Centre) for Tyndrum (must be booked in advance)


Race Registration      

**Please note that you must show photographic ID at race registration**

Friday 11th, 7:00pm - 9:00pm: At the Tyndrum Inn, which serves excellent pub grub.

Saturday 12th, 4:15am - 5:30am: In the Green Welly Stop car park. The Green Welly will be open for hot drinks and hot filled breakfast rolls throughout registration.


At registration you will pick up your race number, which must be worn on your FRONT, and your timing chip. 

Please note you only need to come to one registration session, not both.


Drop Bags

Runners can have drop bags at Glencoe and Kinlochleven. Please label them clearly with your name, race number, and checkpoint location. Drop bags should be small, and must not contain shoes or full changes of clothing. Please do not bring drop bags to Friday registration, as we will not be accepting them then. Please just bring them to the race start on Saturday morning.  The drop bags and their labels should be waterproof as they are placed on the ground at checkpoints.


Race Briefing

5:45am: Race Briefing for all runners, just outside the Green Welly. Please try to listen in case there is any last minute information that you really need to know! We will then move everyone along the road to the start area, which is 200m or so along the road and up the hill beside Brodie’s Store.



Mandatory kit                                                            

The following items MUST be carried by ALL runners at ALL times:


1. An emergency foil blanket (minimum size 200 x 100cm)

2. A fully charged and switched on mobile phone

3. Waterproof jacket with taped seams and hood


Kit checks may be carried out at any point along the race route, or at the race finish. Please note that a foil blanket is the minimum safety kit that we insist on. If you want to carry something more substantial like a bivvy bag or an emergency shelter, that is absolutely fine by us. And please use your common sense. This is a long run over wild terrain. Check the weather forecast and decide for yourself what other kit you might need. In bad or changeable weather we would strongly recommend full waterproofs and extra clothing.



Earphones may be used, but MUST be taken out of ears completely at certain points along the race route:

- When you're approaching a road crossing

- When you're approaching a checkpoint

- When you’re running on any section of tarmac

- If you see a marshal in hi-viz anywhere along the race route

- On any section of trail narrow enough that you’re running single file

We think these rules are very clear. Hopefully you do too, because we will be enforcing them very strictly.

If you forget about your earphones, and a marshal signals you to remove them, you must do so immediately. If you try to argue the point about your music being turned off, your earphones may be confiscated from you until the race finish, and you also risk being removed from the race for your own safety, i.e. disqualified.

 Also, please do not use speakers that play music out loud, as they tend to really annoy other people.



Checkpoints, distances and cut-offs         

Checkpoints, distances, cut-offs, and details of what all is provided are as follows:

Bridge of Orchy7 miles/11 km - water

Glencoe Mountain Resort 17 miles/27 km - water, Coke, Drop bags

Kinlochleven27 miles/43 km - water, Coke, Drop bags, Cut-off 1:30pm

Lundavra35 mile/56 km - water, Coke, Cut-off 4:15pm

If you reach Kinlochleven or Lundavra after the stated cut-off times you will be timed out, and will not be allowed to continue. Please note that if you are timed out at either checkpoint, you must stop. You cannot continue running, even unofficially. If you do so, you will be barred from future events.

Support Runners

If you leave Kinlochleven checkpoint after 11:30am (5hrs 30mins race time) you may take a support runner with you from that point. Kinlochleven is the only place you can pick up a support runner. If you leave Kinlochleven after 11:30am but choose not to take a support runner from there, you cannot then pick one up further along the route. You can have one support runner only, and that person should be capable of running the full distance to the finish with you, as you also cannot swap over support runners at any point. If you have any questions relevant to your support runner’s health, existing medical conditions, or medical history, please direct them to the Devil Medical Team via the Devil team email address. Support runners must be 20+ years old on race day and must carry their own foil blanket and waterproof jacket while running. Please note that muling (where your support runner carries your gear for you) is absolutely NOT allowed. Even if you have a support runner, you MUST carry your own gear at all times. 

Road Crossings

The race route crosses the very busy A82 main road at Bridge of Orchy and at Glencoe Mountain Resort ski centre. At both these locations, marshals will be present and assisting runners to safely cross the road. You MUST remove earphones, slow down or stop altogether, and obey marshals' instructions. Any runners causing hassle in this regard may be withdrawn from the race for their own safety, i.e. disqualified. Please note that marshals DO NOT have the power to stop traffic and that you are at all times responsible for your own safety. 

N.B. Deaf/hard-of-hearing runners: If you use in-ear hearing aids, obviously you do not have to remove them at any point in the race. You may want to wear a sign to let marshals know, but we leave that up to you.

Support Crew and Spectator Information


This means support crews and spectators, and it means that the layby on the A82 at the road crossing, the car park beside the Bridge of Orchy hotel, the train station car park, the road up to the station, the road down to the checkpoint, the checkpoint itself, and the road round to Inveroran are all out of bounds. Support crews and spectators should drive through Bridge of Orchy without stopping.


This means support crews and spectators, and it means that the turning area where our road crossing marshals are standing, the passing places at the bottom of the road up to the Glencoe Mountain Resort ski centre, the verges on the A82 either side of the road crossing, the access road to the Kingshouse Hotel, and any other nearby parking spots we have forgotten to mention, are all out of bounds. Basically, no parking for anyone, anywhere near the road crossing, and also please no slowing down to ask our marshals if your runner has gone through yet. And it also means no parking slightly further away and walking/cycling back. No one is allowed at the road crossing apart from marshals and runners!

We are imposing these restrictions for traffic safety reasons. Please tell your support crew and any friends or family who might be coming along on the day and ask them to obey marshals’ instructions at all times. The first place support crews/spectators can meet runners is at Glencoe checkpoint. After this, support crews/spectators can meet runners anywhere along the race route. The usual provisos about legal and sensible parking apply, and remember no support runners before Kinlochleven at 11:30am. 

The Race Finish

We try our best to make the race finish fabulous. You will be cheered over the finish line. Our photographers will record your moment of glory. You will be given your medal and (if you asked for one) your t-shirt. If you have ordered a race hoody or vest, it will be waiting there for you to collect. And the following additional treats are provided at the finish line for all runners completely FREE of charge:

  • Large marquee for runners to relax in

  • Hot home-made soups and stews - several meat/vegetarian/vegan options will be available

  • Unlimited tea and freshly brewed coffee for all runners (charity donation suggested for non-runners)

  • Hot showers for all runners, in the leisure centre - just hand over the token in your goody bag at reception

  • Post race massage available for all runners, in the massage tent at the race finish - please shower first!

  • First aid/medical assistance will be available at the finish for any runner who requires it.


The prizegiving will take place at the race finish, at approximately 4:00pm, depending on the arrival of our various age category winners. If you know you have some bling to collect but you can’t stay until prizegiving, please let us know and we will give you your trophy to take away with you. 

Trophies will be awarded as follows: 

  • 1st, 2nd, and 3rd overall in each gender category

  • 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Vet 40 in each gender category

  • 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Vet 50 in each gender category

  • 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Vet 60 in each gender category

  • 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Vet 70 in each gender category

Lost property

We will do our best to reunite any lost property with its rightful owner, however we can’t guarantee this. At the race finish, any found items will be put under a ‘LOST PROPERTY’ sign beside all the kit bags. High value lost property items will be looked after by a member of the Devil race team - please come and ask at the race control tent. Anything not claimed by the end of race day will be taken back to Devil HQ - please email if you realise later on that you lost something important at the race.  

Low value clothing items such as t-shirts will be washed and taken to a charity shop therefore please do not deliberately leave clothing at checkpoints as chances are you won’t get it back. 

Foodbank Collection Info

At race registration we will be hosting a collection for Lochaber Foodbank (based in Fort William) and we would like to request that everyone brings along some canned or packaged items to donate. There will be a Lochaber Foodbank van in the Green Welly car park and volunteers will be there to accept your donations.

Suggested food items: rice, pasta, jars of pasta sauce, tinned meat, tinned vegetables, tinned fruit, tinned rice pudding, peanut butter, jam, breakfast cereal, muesli, packets of biscuits, teabags, coffee, sugar, cartons of UHT milk, cartons of long life fruit juice. Also small treats like bars of chocolate and packets of sweets. 

Other stuff: Toiletries – deodorant, shower gel, shampoo, tampons, sanitary towels, toilet paper, toothbrushes, toothpaste. Baby supplies – formula milk, baby food nappies, baby wipes, baby food. Household items - washing up liquid, laundry powder, laundry liquid. 

Pet supplies: dried or tinned dog food, cat food, rabbit/gerbil/hamster/budgie food.  

Frequently Asked Questions

General Stuff:

Give me some basic information about the race please!

The Devil o' the Highlands is Scotland's second oldest ultra event still in existence, after the West Highland Way Race. It is a 42 mile trail race which takes place along the upper section of the West Highland Way footpath. It starts in the pretty Highland village of Tyndrum, goes through Bridge of Orchy and over Mam Carraigh (Jelly Baby Hill) to Inveroran, then crosses Rannoch Moor to arrive at Glencoe and Kingshouse. After that there is the Devil's Staircase, a steep descent down to Kinlochleven, and then the biggest climb of the day: over 1000ft of ascent from Kinlochleven up across the Lairig Mor to Lundavra. From there it's just 7-and-a-bit more miles to the finish in Fort William.

Who organises the event?

John Duncan (also known as Johnny Fling) and his team of happy helpers. All the marshals are volunteers so remember to thank them when you run past and be very nice to them at all times.

What is the terrain like? 

The route is approximately 95% off-road with just a few short sections on tarmac. The off-road sections are mostly wide paths and old drove roads, and although quite technical in places are still very runnable.  The race route includes approximately 2200 metres (7100 feet) of ascent.

Does the race have UTMB points? 

Yes. The Devil o' the Highlands has been classed as a 3 point qualifier for the 2024-2025 UTMB by ITRA, the International Trail Running Association.

Pre Race Stuff:

Will anything be sent out to me by post?

No. All pre-race communication is via email. Race numbers are collected at registration. Medals and t-shirts will be given out at the race finish. If you have ordered race merchandise, you will collect it at the race finish. 

What should I do if any of my details have changed since I entered?

If you need to change any details, this must be done online. See first page for info. Please ensure we have correct medical information and emergency contact details. Also, please make sure that the mobile phone number you have given us is definitely that of the mobile phone you will be carrying during the race!

I'm a newbie to ultras, what are these drop bags all about?

Drop bags allow runners to take part in long races without the need for support crews and without having to carry supplies the whole way. Basically, a drop bag is a SMALL secure parcel that you put some food and drink in and stick a label on with your name, race number, and the checkpoint that you want it taken to. At the start of the race there are vehicles with the names of each checkpoint on them that you put your drop bags in, and they are transported to the checkpoints for you to collect when you arrive there. As well as food and drink, you might want to have stuff like blister plasters or a fresh pair of socks at halfway. In general, drop bags aren't for anything of value, as sometimes (very rarely) they go missing, and also you won’t get back anything you leave at checkpoints. 

Parking and Transport Stuff:

Whereabouts in Tyndrum can I park on race day?

For dropping off at the race start and short term parking (i.e. friends, family, support crews), please use the Green Welly car park, the Real Food Cafe car park, TJ’s Diner car park, or anywhere else it is okay to stop for an hour or two. It doesn't matter where your vehicle is parked during registration, as long as it won't be left there after the race has started.

Please note that we will have traffic marshals coordinating short term parking in all of the locations listed above. If you arrive by car, on your own, and obviously dressed to run, you will not be allowed in. 


If you are staying overnight in Tyndrum in booked accommodation, please leave your vehicle at your accommodation. If you are not staying in booked accommodation, you must not leave your vehicle parked in Tyndrum for the day! Yes, this is going to be inconvenient for some people, but August is peak tourist period and parking in Tyndrum is the event’s biggest issue. Please do not cause hassle for us in this regard! Please try to car share to the event if at all possible. 

Whereabouts in Fort William can I park on race day?

Please use An Aird pay & display car park opposite the Nevis Centre (PH33 6FE, next to Lidl). This applies to runners getting the 4:00am coach from Fort William to the race start and also to friends and family coming to Fort William to cheer runners on at the finish. Everyone should use An Aird car park. There is NO parking for runners, friends, family, or support crews at the leisure centre this year. 

Please note there is NO PARKING AT ALL at the Leisure Centre, either in front of the centre or in the parking area round the back. This includes campervans/motorhomes parking there overnight on Friday and/or Saturday night.

Can I have a bag transported from the start to the finish?

Yes, you can. As well as the drop bag vehicles in the car park at the start of the race, there will be a vehicle transporting kit bags to the finish at Fort William. Please make sure you use the tear-off kitbag label on the bottom of your race number. Reasonable size bags only please, no huge suitcases.

If you withdraw from the race for any reason and go straight home, we will get your finish bag returned to you, but this may take a few days. If your car is parked in Tyndrum, carry your key with you while running. If you withdraw from the race early on, you don't want your car key to be up in Fort William while you are heading back to Tyndrum.

Is there public transport from Fort William back to Tyndrum? 

There is a Scotrail train from Fort William to Tyndrum (Upper) at 5:37pm. There are Citylink buses from Fort William to Tyndrum at 2:10pm, 3.10pm 4:00pm, 5:40pm, and 7:10pm All of these continue on to Glasgow city centre. Advance booking is advised. There will also be lots of marshals driving back down from Fort William through Tyndrum at the end of the day, so don't worry if you're a late finisher and you’ve missed your planned bus or train. Just let us know as early as possible, and we’ll make sure you're not stranded. 

Race Stuff:

Can a friend register for me?

No. Runners MUST pick up their own race numbers. No exceptions. You require photo ID to register.

Can I pass on my race number to someone else if I’m not able to run any more?

No, absolutely not. The swapping of race numbers is completely forbidden. Please don’t even try it. You will almost certainly be rumbled (thanks to the intrusive power of social media) and you will be banned from all future events. 

Should I wear road or trail shoes? 

Personal preference. Most of the paths are good and unless it's been raining for the whole week before the race, it's not likely to be too wet underfoot. Basically, whatever you normally run off-road in will be fine. 

How do I estimate my finishing time?

If you've trained properly for the distance and terrain, we reckon a bit more than double your road marathon time. Of course you may be faster or slower depending on weather and how much you enjoy hoofing over big rocks etc.

What should I do with my rubbish?

You absolutely MUST NOT drop any rubbish on the trail! If you see a runner dropping rubbish please ask them to pick it up.  If you see any race litter on the trail, please pick it up and take it to the next checkpoint. There will be rubbish bins at all checkpoints. We will be operating a new recycling system at Glencoe and Kinlochleven checkpoints so please look out for recycling signs and follow marshals’ instructions when discarding your cans, plastic bottles, and other packaging.

Are there toilets along the route?

At registration, there are toilets inside the Green Welly, and also extra portaloos in the Green Welly car park. There are public access toilets in the Bridge of Orchy hotel, public portaloos on the trail at Bridge of Orchy checkpoint, public toilets just before the Kingshouse Hotel, public toilets near the checkpoint at Kinlochleven, and portaloos in the playing field right at the race finish. All the indoors public toilets are gendered male and female, all the portaloos are gender neutral and open to all genders. There are no toilets at Lundavra, sorry.

If you really need to go to the toilet between checkpoints please step well off the trail and try to make sure no-one can see you, especially members of the public or any local residents. Also please DO NOT drop your used tissues, either on the trail or in the bushes. Bag them up and take them away with you!

What are the rules about gates?

If you pass through an open gate, leave it open. If the gate is closed, please close it behind you. If another runner is coming up behind you, it’s polite to wait a second and hold the gate open for them too.

Can my friends and family follow my progress online?

Yes. The link to follow live updates will be available on the home page of the race website. There will be live checkpoint updates and finishline results available throughout the day.

Will I get back any of the stuff from my drop bags?

No. When you leave a checkpoint, any unused food and drink items will be put out for later runners to help themselves to. If you want to put fresh socks into a drop bag that's fine, but if you leave your sweaty ones behind they'll be binned. Basically, if you leave it at a checkpoint you won’t get it back. So if you want to change shoes mid-race, get yourself a support crew. We will NOT transport grubby shoes to the race finish for you!

Support Crew Stuff:

Do I need to have a support crew? 

No, you don't. The race is set up so you can run it completely unsupported. Support crews are not necessary at all and we would really prefer if you didn’t have one. However if you do want to have a support crew, it’s allowed. 

Where all are support crews allowed to meet runners?

Support crews can meet runners at Glencoe and Kinlochleven checkpoints. They can also meet runners anywhere along the route from Glencoe onwards, subject to the usual provisos about legal and sensible parking. Support crews cannot meet runners anywhere before Glencoe checkpoint. We strongly recommend support crews do not go to Lundavra checkpoint, due to its remote location and narrow single-track access road. 

Glencoe checkpoint is at Glencoe Mountain Resort, PH49 4HZ. Kinlochleven checkpoint is near the Ice Factor, Leven Rd, Kinlochleven, PH50 4SF. 

Safety Stuff: 

Do I really need to carry a foil blanket, mobile phone, and waterproof jacket? 

Yes. Yes, you really do. Please just make things easy for us and comply with the kit rules. The mandatory kit could save your or someone else’s life in an emergency. You could be kit checked by a marshal at any point in the race, including at the finishline. And if you are not carrying the compulsory kit, you WILL be disqualified.

In case you think we’re bluffing, please be aware that over the last five years we have disqualified around 15 people from our events for not carrying the mandatory kit. We don’t like doing it, but we will if we have to…

What should I do if I come across an injured runner?

You absolutely MUST stop and try to help. It is very important that we all look after each other out there. If a runner is seriously injured then please call 999 first (ask for POLICE then MOUNTAIN RESCUE), then call Race Control (this phone number will be printed on your race number). If you have no mobile phone signal please wait till another runner arrives to assist then run on until you get a signal.  If the runner can’t move and is getting cold please use your and other runners’ emergency foil blankets to keep the injured runner warm.

What should I do if I'm timed out, or if I decide to withdraw from the race? 

If you withdraw from the race at one of the checkpoints, please let a marshal know you are stopping, and make sure you give them your name and your race number. If you decide to withdraw from the race between checkpoints and have your support crew pick you up somewhere, please phone the number for DNF runners (this phone number will be printed on your race number) and let us know that you're okay. Please DO NOT simply exit the race and go home with your support crew without telling a marshal and handing over your timing chip. 

If you withdraw from the race, and you don't have a support crew, sweeper cars at each checkpoint will be able to drive you on to the finish at Fort William, or back to the start at Tyndrum. However this may be some time after the checkpoint finally closes, so you could have a wait of several hours. Please remember that marshals are NOT taxi drivers, so don't pester them about how long you've been waiting. There will be first aiders at every checkpoint, so make yourself known to them and they'll take care of you. Make sure you don’t get cold while you’re waiting - ask nicely if you can sit inside a marshal’s car, put on any spare clothing you have and if required, use your foil blanket to keep warm. 

Why is there a ban on race-day use of ibuprofen and other NSAIDs?

This rule has been brought in at the insistence of our medical team. Ibuprofen and other NSAIDs are known to put stress on the kidneys and occasionally this can cause life-threatening problems for ultrarunners. Our medical team are highly experienced and highly competent ultra-medics, they know what they’re talking about and we fully support them on this rule. If you are sceptical about this information, please google 'ibuprofen and ultrarunning' and read about the risks yourself.  If you are planning to use NSAIDs as a race-day painkiller, DON’T DO IT!


A final note from our Medical Team:

The Devil o’ the Highlands Medical Team do not sanction anyone as ‘fit to run’; instead we want to be aware of our runners' history in order to be as well prepared for emergencies as possible. We provide first aid facilities only, in a remote environment, and we cannot cover all eventualities. All runners should consider their own fitness to participate and should, if they have any concerns, discuss with their GP or specialist before participating. We would like you to share those discussions with us prior to the event, so that we can be best prepared. Any information provided to us is treated with the utmost confidentiality, is not shared outside of the medical team and will be destroyed securely after the event. 


It is very important that all runners provide us with fully accurate and up to date medical information. If you have asthma, high blood pressure, diabetes, epilepsy, any form of heart condition, any other condition you have been diagnosed with that might affect your ability to safely participate in the race, any condition you are currently taking medication for, then WE NEED TO KNOW ABOUT IT! We have already screened all medical information provided to us online via Si Entries, however if you experience last minute changes to any medical conditions or prescribed medications, you must let us know via email before race day.


Any runner who would like to discuss anything with our medical team before the event should contact as soon as possible.  


And Please Remember:


The casual race-day use of ibuprofen, diclofenac, naproxen, or any other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) is forbidden. You must not use any of these drugs as a race-day painkiller. If we become aware that you are doing so without our knowledge, you WILL be disqualified. Please note that if you have an ongoing prescription for any of these medications, you should continue to take your usual dose but you must inform us about it in advance and you must be able to show us an in-date prescription packet if requested. 


You must also be aware that NSAID use during endurance events ALWAYS carries a risk.

Having an official prescription does not remove, alter, or minimise that risk in any way.





That’s all, folks :-)


Thank you for taking the time to read all the race info. Hopefully this has covered everything you might want to know, but if not, just send an email to:


You can also look for information on the race website:


or ask in the Facebook group:

Devil o' the Highlands Facebook Group

Happy tapering, and we look forward to seeing you all on race day! 



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