A cape to cape WALK
A 1250 mile backpacking adventure through Britain ...
The 250-mile walk from Fort William to Cape Wrath on the north-western tip of Scotland, makes a truly awesome 21-day grand finale for my 1250-mile long walk across Britain. My route on this final leg is largely based on Cicerone’s excellent guidebook, The Cape Wrath Trail, following Iain Harper’s more westerly tack.
After crossing Camusnagaul ferry over to Ardgour, I head into the stunning remote wilderness of the Knoydart Peninsula and over to Barisdale. This is followed by a challenging walk over to Shiel Bridge, passing below the Forcan Ridge during a surprise onslaught from Hurricane Bertha.
After pausing to dry out and allow the worst of the storm to pass, I climb on past the Falls of Glomach to Strath Duilleach, heading over to Maol-bhuidhe and Bendronaig and on to Strathcarron. After sheltering from more stormy weather at Kinlochewe, I make my way over to Strath na Sealga and Shenevall – a wonderfully wild country that is followed by a dreadful 9-mile night-time road-slog in driving rain to Ullapool.
After dawdling for a day to recharge batteries and stomach, I head eastwards to Bridge of Orchy followed by a magnificent climb over to Inchnadamph under Conival and Ben More Assynt - a land of head-scratching geological complexity. Here I meet up with schoolmate Bob Peckham who joins me to complete the final leg to Cape Wrath via Glencoul, Loch Stack and Rhiconich.
Reaching the Glencoul bothy after a pathless and particularly knackering leg of the walk, we meet up with a German couple whom I met two days earlier. Bob and I continue to the Strath Chailleach bothy - a lonely, eerie place, surrounded by peaty moors and guarded by swarms of unbelievably aggressive midges, possibly alerted to the fact that this is their last chance to have a go at me. The saving grace of the bothy is an abundant supply of peat.
Cape Wrath’s forlorn lighthouse and headland, surrounded by treacherous swirling seas, provide a fitting end to the walk - but leave me wondering what to do next. Writing A Cape to Cape Walk was part of the answer!
A Ruined homested (shieling) at Carnoch
Camusnagaul Ferry to cross over onto the Ardgour Peninsula
A female adder on the hunt for frogs in Cona Glen
Into the wilds, upper Cona Glen
Hiding from the Dreaded Midge above Glen Finnan.
Knoydart residents – more heads than legs!
Knoydart, heading towards Sourlies
Sourlies, an abandoned shieling on Loch Nevis by Sourlies
The steep pathless climb out of Canoch Glen
Loch Hourn from Barisdale
Loch Hourn sea loch
Coire Reidh after onslought of Hurricane Bertha, where I shelter overnight in the hut opposite
Glomach Gorge, a tricky pathless descent after the heavy rains.
Maol Bhuide Bothy, before the Great War the home to a family of 10, a great place for the children only game, hide and seek
Tar-soaked fencing posts at Bendronaig
Red sandstones of Fuar Tholl mountain
Strath Sealga in heavey rain
Sheneval Bothy with Beinn Dearg Mor
The promise of fair weather at Knochdamph bothy
Heading up from Inchnadamph (Photo Bob Peckham)
Last sunlight over Loch Glencoul
Loch Stack camp
A storm threatens at Sandwood Bay
A roaring peat fire at Strathchailleach Bothy
Sunrise at Strathchailleach
This is not me!!
Journey's end at Cape Wrath
5 - 28
Click here to download the GPX file for Stage 5 of the Cape To Cape
Contact John Sutcliffe - firstname.lastname@example.org
About The Walk | The Author | Equipment List
Stage 1 - South West England
Stage 2 - Welsh Borders to Derbyshire Dales
Stage 3 - The Pennine Way
Stage 4 - Southern Uplands to Scottish Highlands
Stage 5 - Cape Wrath Trail
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