About this blog

The journey from John o'Groats to Land's End took place in 14 sections, starting in 1996 (a week or so each year). The idea came to me in 1995 and I completed the British JoGLE Watershed in June 2009.

I was joined by a number of relations and friends from time to time. Most notable among my walking companions were my son Tim (7 sections) and nephews Peter and Jonny.

After walking the first section in 1996 I discovered that Dave Hewitt had already pioneered the Scottish Watershed (to Cape Wrath) in 1987, and had published his excellent account Walking the Watershed in 1994. We have been in touch since then, and he has been a great encouragement.

A simple definition of the watershed is that any rain falling to the left of the path finishes in the North Sea or English Channel, and anything to the right flows into the Atlantic Ocean, the Irish Sea or the Bristol Channel.

I believe that this was the first walk along the full length of the British JoGLE Watershed. I became aware just after I completed the journey that the late Mike Allen walked a slightly different version (from Land's End to Cape Wrath) between 1988 and 1994, so he will have covered the same ground apart from the most north-easterly 220km.

There have subsequently been several walks and publications about parts of the JoGLE watershed, including Peter Wright's 2010 Ribbon of Wildness account of his Scottish section walked in 2005, which has brought the subject of watershed walking in the UK to a wider audience.

I hope you enjoy this blog. I'm planning to publish a full account in 2013/4. A summary of the walk appeared in The Angry Corrie volume 76 in 2009.

Malcolm Wylie.

Friday, 13 June 1997

Day 23 - South Glen Shiel ridge

We decided that our original plan of reaching the Great Glen in time for the return flight on Monday was over-ambitious, so we thought we'd enjoy a fairly relaxed couple of days of walking, to finish on Saturday afternoon at the Kinloch Hourn road. We had a leisurely breakfast at Cluanie Inn and put the contents of our final parcel into our rucksacks.

There was low cloud and rain all day, so we missed out on any views from one of the best ridges in the Highlands. We walked back up the road to the Watershed, and struck off up the Drum Thollaidh ridge up to Sgurr Coire na Femne. Because time was on our side, we decided to go off-route to bag the Maol Chinn-dearg Munro. We then retraced our steps NW along the ridge, taking in Doire Leathain and Sgurr an Lochain.

Tim was very chilled again because of inadequate waterproofs, so we camped early on the bealach at 989110, with a view to making an early start tomorrow.

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