15 responses

  1. James Lomax
    January 25, 2013

    Very interesting to see the plans and ideas unfold. I know parts of Scotland but there are large areas I don’t so it’s always exciting to see walking discussed.

    I doubt if I will ever do the Challenge because for various reasons it doesn’t suit me. I do however enjoy seeing all the action and the fun people clearly have which is why they do it repeatedly: the “craic”, as they say in Ireland.

    When you began “Our start point for this year’s crossing is a small village named Torridon on the east coast of Scotland” it did startle me a little. Torridon a “small village”? Well of course it is, but in associative walking terms it’s a lot more than that: you can spend a few days just there with big hills and lochs to explore.

    Interesting too, the attraction Scotland has for overseas visitors. It’s not a place with altitudes such as you find in parts of North America, the Alps, Pyrenees etc. but height is not everything and it certainly doesn’t correlate directly with degree of “challenge.”

    Let’s now wait for the weather. Last year it was quite severely bad but then changed abruptly into sunny heat; I was in Scotland during the latter and it was memorable.

    • Earlylite
      January 25, 2013

      Torridon is a destination by itself and has some of the finest hills in Scotland. Problem is, they’re just outside the bounds of the challenge where you are allowed to hike. We still plan on climbing some of them though and Plan to arrive early to get over our jet lag from the states and bag a few.

    • Earlylite
      January 25, 2013

      It’s difficult for me to explain my love of Scottish hill walking or my affinity for the Scots, who are so wonderful to Challengers in their kindness. I come for many reasons: I loves the views, the freedom I feel in being in what many would still consider true wilderness, and I love being part of the extended Challenger family of hikers who have made the crossing before. The peaks are also similar in height to my home stomping grounds in the White Mountains in New Hampshire, not high in elevation, but extremely challenging and unforgiving in bad weather. There aren’t that many overseas visitors who hike the Challenge each year, but those that do tend to be a chatty group.

  2. Nick Bramhall
    January 25, 2013

    It sounds like you and Martin have put together an excellent stravaig, taking in some of the best parts of the country and climbing some interesting peaks. I’m just wondering though: was this line a nod to a certain Mr D. Trump?

    “Our start point for this year’s crossing is a small village named Torridon on the east coast of Scotland.”

    Torridon is, of course, a small village on the west coast of Scotland! Wonderful it is too, and the perfect place to start such a Challenge. Enjoy!

    • Earlylite
      January 25, 2013

      I have geographic dyslexia I guess. I keep making that same mistake whenever I talk about the UK.

  3. Grandpa
    January 25, 2013

    The world’s round… they’ll get there.

  4. alan.sloman
    January 26, 2013

    Cracking route you have there, Gromit!
    It looks like all those hours spent whizzing gpx files through the ether have paid off with a corker!
    Your route after Braemar sounds splendid – the walking is gorgeous over those hills.
    Looking forward to seeing you again, Phil.
    :-)

    • Earlylite
      January 28, 2013

      Likewise Alan – I will try to save some cheese for us.

  5. Rob
    January 26, 2013

    It looks like a well-planned route. About all i can add is that I’m drooling with envy. Have fun!

  6. terrybnd
    January 27, 2013

    Hi Phil,

    I may well try and hook up with you and the guys in Braemar ;) Be good to meet up over a few ales.

    Funnily enough I was only in the Ben Macdui area last week and even descended to the glen via Lurchers Crag. That route on the hill is actually very rocky and tortuous in places. Well, it was for me in the deep snow. Not sure what it would be like in the spring.

    Good luck with it all and hope to see you at some point on the challenge :)

    • Earlylite
      January 28, 2013

      I’d love to finally meet you in person Terry. Looks like Chris is keeping you busy. Great stuff.

  7. Grandpa
    January 28, 2013

    I want to go so badly. Hopefully, I’ll have the means (and still have the health) to do it in a couple years.

  8. Ken knight
    February 2, 2013

    I think you have a great route plan. I really need to do the TGO challenge again. Who knows maybe in 2014 I can pull together a small group of people to do the challenge once again.

  9. Earlylite
    June 2, 2013

    Ken – people here think very highly of you. I’d give it a go.

  10. dara ohuiginn
    July 18, 2013

    Amazing! I am ready to put my name into the hat in October to go in 2014. Is it possible to get the route files or is that out of order to request. I don’t mind planning but if there is a great route already done I would prefer to spend the time understanding it and the navigation needs.
    dara dara@ohuiginn.ca Ottawa

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