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.

Monday, 15 June 2009

Day 121 - onto Bodmin Moor

This was an eventful day, despite a lot of it being on roads.

We reached the A39 at Wainhouse Corner, and then the watershed veered off to the right, through Tresparrett Posts and Marshgate. This area was the origin of the dreadful flash flood which destroyed much of Boscastle in 2004.

Back onto the A39, and onto map 200, we then turned left at the large Dairy Crest factory ("the home of cheese") and found the tiny RAF museum of Davidstowe Moor (see photo of a Canberra engine) commemorating the nearby wartime airfield. We picnicked by Davidstow Woods, and then (onto map 201) we struck south across open moorland up to the summit of Brown Willy on Bodmin Moor (the highest point in Cornwall at 420m). Chris and I had climbed it a few years earlier from the other side. I shot this short video of the panorama from the top.

We dropped down to Bolventor and had supper in the famous Jamaica Inn. In the evening we walked along the very busy A30 (not for the last time, unfortunately), and camped at the top of Brockabarrow Common - at 160748. (The book will tell the drama of the sinking cow).

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