The Long Walk 2012

We found we liked long-distance walking a lot, and Britain is a great place for doing it, so we decided to spend a month doing a long-distance walking extravaganza.

First of all we settled on May, since the weather is usually pretty good (or at least, not as bad as the average British weather). Also May is likely to be midge-free in Scotland, which we considered to be an important feature.

There are dozens of long-distance paths in Britain now, with new ones being created every year. We had already had our eye on the Hadrian’s Wall Path, and we had heard good things about the West Highland Way. And then it was an obvious idea to add in the Great Glen Way.

But we had planned for a month or so, which meant we could fit in another walk. We kicked around various possibilities, until one day we were watching reruns of old British television shows, and on came a show called “Monarch of the Glen”. Which reminded us that Scotland had Ospreys. So our research led us to the Loch Garten Osprey Centre, which was on the route of the Speyside Way. So that settled it — the Speyside Way would be our fourth long walk.

As it turned out, our GPS told us that we walked at a very consistent speed every day. So we said we walked across England, and back across Scotland, at 3¼ miles per hour (5.2 km per hour). Here’s a summary chart of our walking distances:

Dates Path Km Miles
May 6 – 12 Hadrian’s Wall 139.7 86.8
May 14 – 20 West Highland Way 152.8 94.9
May 21 Ben Nevis 22.6 14.0
May 23 – 26 Great Glen Way 127.5 79.2
May 27 – June 1 Speyside Way 106.3 66.1
TOTAL 548.9 341.1

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