I have walked a lot of long distance routes over the years, both in the UK and abroad. Some are official trails and others I just pull the maps out and link together paths and tracks.
While reviewing some of my previous treks I realised that I had completed quite a lot of treks running north-south.
I walked from Glasgow (Milngavie) to Cape Wrath, including climbing 26 mountains, in 2003, 2004 and 2005.
I backpacked the Pennine Way in 1974 and walked from Ashbourne to Edale in 2017.
When you add up the mileages that’s roughly half the distance from Cape Wrath to Lands End. So, I’ve decided to fill in the gaps, in fact we will finish in Sennen Cove, a couple of miles beyond Lands End as it’s a pretty village.
To make it more interesting I will be using as many official trails as possible, rather than the shortest route. Jan will be walking with me for all of the treks and I’m hoping to finish in the next 3 years or so.
We’ve already started by walking 4 day walks from Ashbourne to Weston near Crewe, mostly along the Staffordshire Way and South Cheshire Way. Two more days walking and we reach Whitchurch along the South Cheshire Way. From Whitchurch the Shropshire Way takes us south to link with Offa’s Dyke Path to Chepstow in South Wales and so on.
There’s a bit of a gap to the north too between Milngavie and the end of the Pennine Way (Kirk Yetholm). We are planning to do this in June and September this year, by which time we should have reached Whitchurch as our southerly point.
It’s been quite interesting seeing areas we either haven’t visited before or it has been a while since our last visit. We are also finding new pubs and real ales to visit at the end of each day.
It’s a good time of year for the birdlife too. So far, aprt from the usual suspects, we’ve seen 3 Goosanders between Alton and Leek. Heard the first Chiffchaffs this year on 22nd March. Seen lots of Lapwings, a Cormorant, a flock of around 20 Curlews and much more.
Here are a few phone photos.
Ashbourne to Alton
Alton to Leek
Leek to Scholar Green
Scholar Green to Weston near Crewe