TGO Challenge 2014 – Vetters comments back. Our survey says WET !

Well the Vetter’s comments about my suggested route are back, and it looks as though I could have picked a drier route underfoot in Waterworld.

Selected comments from different days include;

  • the open ground can be very wet as you will be crossing a flood plain
  • can after periods of rain be very wet and boggy
  • prone to be very wet and boggy
  • it IS wet and boggy
  • can become flooded………

So let’s get this straight, what I appear to have planned is a 200 mile walk through this !


Luckily Alvar and Ann come up with plenty of suggestions of where to get some shelter if the heavens open and I’m mightily impressed with their encyclopaedic knowledge of every inch of Scotland. They’ve provided some really useful information, so many thanks to them both. I can see what a valuable job the vetter’s do.

I can also see now that I’ve made things a little bit difficult for myself by going against the grain for the first few days and heading south……. which means I have no easy way of avoiding some river crossings without lengthy detours east or west. Hey Ho, I live and learn…..or swim.

I’ve been asked to provide an alternative Foul Weather Route to avoid a high section over Lochnagar if the weather turns nasty, and I have to admit that my original FWA did still go a bit high (Munro height…oops !).

The great thing about all this planning, and something I didn’t expect, is that my chosen route has really started to feel quite personal even if I know thousands have trod that way before. I’ve started to feel like it’s my route, as though I’d just written a trail guide.

Anyway enough of the misty eyed nonsense…….where did I leave those waders and arm bands.

5 thoughts on “TGO Challenge 2014 – Vetters comments back. Our survey says WET !

  1. Hi John,

    I too started my first TGO at Strathcarron. It’s been a place I’d love to go back to.

    I can’t imagine what this advice about it being wet is all about. On my first day it rained and rained and I had to cross one river up to the top of my legs! Still, better than 2 guys who ended up immersed in the same river!

    I’m convinced this year will be better than previous years. But, I do carry a snorkel just in case!

    Hope you have a great one. May meet you on route? or in Montrose.

    • Cheers Gordon, really enjoying reading back through other bloggers previous TGO’s. And encouraged by your conviction about the weather. Convertable pants it is then !

  2. Hi John. Great to see another backpacking blogger and prospective TGO Challenger! Your route looks great. I’m a great advocate of spending as much time as possible west of the Great Glen so your first few days look excellent and it’ll be interesting to see how you get on going across the grain. I’m fairly sure we are due drought and heatwave up here after the winter we’ve had so fingers crossed it won’t be quite as wet as your vetters predict. Best of luck and I’ll be following your progress!

    • Hi Nick, yes I have to admit a soft spot for the west, it figures highly in my long term retirement plan. I’ve had a rough line scribbled on an old map for years and never got round to it, so decided to start off by following it for the first few days of this TGO. Fingers crossed for the River Loyne or it could be a lengthy detour.
      p.s. How did you find using the Spot tracker last year ?

      • The Spot was absolutely fine all the way across until the penultimate day when it mysteriously stopped being able to get a GPS signal and so could no longer transmit my location… Until then (and for almost a years worth of trips previously) it had hardly missed a beat. As it was (just) within the warranty period Spot replaced the unit but I didn’t receive any explanation as to what went wrong…

        P.S. Apologies for using the word great so many times in that original comment!

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