Which Long Distance Walk for 2013

It’s time to start thinking about a long distance walk for 2013. I’m looking for something which is up to about 2-3 weeks long, and have got a shortlist:

I originally intended to do the Cambrian Way in 2011 but even though I had 8 months off work, still couldn’t find a big enough gap to fit it in. Faced with splitting it into two walks, I decided to defer it. Accommodation planning made this difficult, but now that I have begun wild camping, this walk now seems a lot more doable.

Also in 2011 I toyed with the idea of doing the C2C, but couldn’t drum up the enthusiasm for it as it’s become so popular now. It was only after doing my own version of the Cumbrian Way that year that I realised that I could simply make my own up. Taking inspiration from the Alternative Coast to Coast (ACC) and Ravenber Way, I have devised my own route which blends aspects of all 3 and takes in some places I really want to visit.

The Southern Upland Way is a new one on my wishlist and makes it largely because it’s about the right length, can take in some decent hills on the way, is a coast to coast walk and would mean expanding my walking into Scotland, where I’ve done very little. But it’s not just about having the right specs – I’ve enjoyed the accounts of those that have done it and definitely want to do it at some point.

The West Highland Way (WHW) and Great Glen Way (GGW) has been on my list for a while, and despite being as popular as the C2C is still something I want to do. I would almost certainly take some high level alternatives along the way.

Please feel free to suggest alternatives.

4 thoughts on “Which Long Distance Walk for 2013

  1. Until a couple of weeks ago I was pretty sure I was doing the Pennine Way next year, mainly because I’d been asked to update the Trailblazer guide book for them, but I’ve heard nothing more about that, so I’m also trying to decide what to do if that falls through.

    I’d really like to do something new and my thoughts have turned to the SUW. It’s about the same length as the PW and similar in terms of landscape, which suits me fine as I loved the PW.

    I can’t decide whether to backpack it, or B&B it. I’ve never done a multi-day walk as a backpack, so I think this may be a bit big to cut my teeth on. I need to get some practice in through as I plan to backpack the LEJOG walk in 2014.

    Anyway, I’ve drivelled on long enough, a vote for the SUW from me. I’ll be doing it late April/early May time frame, probably over 14 days.

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    1. That’s roughly the sort of timing that I’m likely to be out. If I do the SUW then it will definitely be predominantly backpacking with the odd fixed roof thrown in for an occasional wash opportunity. I’ve found the secret to long distance walks carrying everything (like my Cumbria Way in 2011) is to view it as stages and effectively treat it like a series of 3-5 day backpacks. For me it’s the mental issue of being out for so long rather than the load, and so I try to break it into stages starting/ending in the major centres of civilisation along the way. In essence I “reboot” the trip every few days.

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  2. I think you want to try your custom c2c! I’d like to do the Staffordshire Way some time – Kinver Edge to Mow Cop Castle 🙂

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    1. Considering I first meant to do at least one of the c2c and Cambrian in 2011 when I had 6 months to do it in, and that I’m going to have a similar opportunity in 2013, then clearly it has to be at least one of these.

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