Clans that lived in this area known as
Rannoch were: MacDonald's, Menzies,
MacGregor's, MacDougall's, Cameron's,
Robertson's and Stewart's.
Two Villages evolved here, Kinlochmore on
the north side of the River Leven and
Kinlochbeg on the south side, Kinlochbeg later
1600s - as Scotland became a safer place,
Cattle Droving began with Highland Cattle being
taken south for sale. Kinlochleven was on one
of the main Droving Trails.
1800s late - Steamers began
running between Ballachulish and Kinlochleven,
sometimes towing Rowing Boats so they could
take more Passengers, such as the SS Loch Leven
1891 - Sir Hugh Munro produced a list of
Mountains in Scotland over 3,000 feet high,
known as Munro's, leading to many Tourists
visiting Scotland to Hike these Mountains. The
Mamores are a Mountain Range on the north side
of Kinlochleven with 10 Mountains classed as
Munro's, with the highest and most Hiked being
the 1,130m / 3,710ft Binnein
1907 - the large Blackwater Dam was built on
Rannoch Moor to power a Hydro Plant at
Kinlochleven so the Electricity could be used
to Smelt Aluminium Ore brought in by Boat from
places such as Ireland. The Dam was built by
about 3,000 workers and the Aluminium Plant
employed up to 700 people at one point, with
houses built in the Village to accommodate
There is a Graveyard by
the Dam known as the Graveyard of the Unknown,
with 22 Grave Stones with no names for poor
workers that died during the construction.
1914 to 1918 during World War One - British
Soldiers and 1,200 German Prisoners were based
by Kinlochleven to work on extending the Dam
System to other Lochs on Rannoch Moor.
1923 - a Road was built from Glencoe to
Kinlochleven, then round to North Ballachulish.
This 16 mile road saved waiting on the
Ballachulish Ferries to cross Loch Leven,
bringing a lot of Trade and Tourism to the
1974 - the Ballachulish Bridge was built
across Loch Leven, leading to Kinlochleven
becoming a Lost Village, like many others in
Scotland when bypasses were built. The Village
gradually became known for quiet peaceful
holidays in a real scenic area.
1980 - the 154km /96mile West Highland Way
walking route between Glasgow and Fort William
opened with a stopover point being at
Kinlochleven. This Trail leads to around 36,000
Walkers passing through Kinlochleven each year.
The 2 sections north to Fort William and south
to The Kings House Hotel, are two of the top
sections, with some people only doing certain
sections at a time.
2000 - the Aluminium Works at Kinlochleven
2002 - the Atlas Brewery opened in one of
the remaining Buildings of the Aluminium
2003 - The Climb Centre opened in one of the
remaining Buildings of the Aluminium Works,
leading to Kinlochleven becoming a popular
Tourist Attraction with adventure seekers.
2014 - Via Ferrata / Vertical Descents
opened in Kinlochleven providing a number of
Outdoor Adventure Sports including Climbing up
the 230ft Grey Mares Tail Waterfalls.
2021 - I viewed Kinlochleven from the Pap of
Glencoe with the Mamore Mountains above the
Village, and Ben Nevis a short distance north,
one of the top views in Scotland, Large
Today - the Hydro Plant is
used to Power an Aluminium Smelter at Fort
William and provides power to the National
Grid, claimed to produce enough Power for 1,200