Tag Archives: SouthernUplandWay

Southern Upland Way: Scotland’s longest long-distance path going coast-to-coast

The Last Bit of the Southern Upland Way

Berwickshire coast

Berwickshire coast

This is one of those very rare posts where I describe actually finishing a long-distance walk. It is all the more incredible as looking back over these posts show that I started the Southern Upland Way over five years ago.  I know I’m a slow walker but that really is glacial.  Poor Jazz was barely out of puppy-hood when she started getting dragged along.

The official SUW distance is 212 miles but after 22 separate walks involving lots of circuits we took almost exactly 300 miles to complete it.  And today was the last day from Longformacus to Cockburnspath and so something to savour.  It’s such a pity that it was dire. Continue reading

Traquair to Galashiels

Three Brethren

Three Brethren

A rare combination of a free weekend and decent weather gave us the chance to get back to the Southern Upland Way for the last two sections: yes, we are frighteningly close to finishing this.  Today was the shorter one with a walk over the old Minch Moor drove road from Traquair to Galashiels.  So sit back and enjoy, because this walk was a cracker. Continue reading

Tibbie Shiels to Traquair

St. Mary's Loch

St. Mary’s Loch

This is the second day of our weekend doing the central section of the Southern Upland Way (SUW) and a kind Missus dropped us back at Tibbie Shiels Inn for the much shorter wander around St. Mary’s Loch and then over the hills to Traquair.  This was probably just as well because although it was a gorgeous morning the forecast was for snow by mid-afternoon. Continue reading

Beattock to Tibbie Shiels

Loch of the Lowes

Loch of the Lowes

The central bit of the Southern Upland Way (SUW) is a bit isolated and needs help from a friendly spouse to do pick-up/drop-off duty.  The possibility of doing a couple of days walking opened up when I pointed out to the Missus that a couple of Sustrans cycle routes were in the area and she could amuse herself with a cycle invasion of northern England.  So it’s off to Moffat for a couple of days walking of the SUW heading east. Continue reading

Castle Kennedy to the Middle of Nowhere

Geese, Castle KennedyI have a map of southern Scotland on my office wall that I have annotated with the walks Jazz and I have done. The brown bits and islands have the expected spider’s web but there was a big gap that was teasing me: the last section of the western half of the Southern Upland Way we still had to do.  It’s been blank for a few years as it requires serious planning (i.e. more than our usual “while having breakfast”) and spousal cooperation for drop-off/pick-up duty.  A recent brain-wave gave me the idea of a holiday in the area and bribing the Missus to do this if I did the cycling support team bit while she tried to join up the coffee-pushers on the nearby cycle network.  She fell for it, and so on a lovely early-Autumn morning Jazz and I were dumped at Castle Kennedy to start this last western bit. Continue reading

Overfingland to Moffat

Looking back at the car and Lowther Hill, 2It’s a May Bank Holiday with decent weather forecast, so obviously we are into “avoid-the-crowds” mode.  And where else but the Southern Upland Way (SUW) almost guarantees you’ll meet no-one the whole day?  So our eyes were drawn to one of the longer stages that we still needed to do in the western half, and with the Missus offering to pick us up at the end, we were set for the section from Overfingland to Moffat. Continue reading

Juncus Dance

The plan was to do a tarmac stretch of the Southern Upland Way (SUW) to the west of the Glentrool area and turn it into a circuit by following a path along the banks of the lovely River Cree.  What could be nicer?  Well, it turned into one of the least enjoyable walks in D&G and I include it here to remind me never to do it again!  And give you suitable warning. Continue reading

Glenkens Circuit

Old Raleigh Bike Sign

Today we were down in St John's Town of Dalry to do a 12km stretch of the SUW that we’ve been leaving because it doesn’t offer the chance for a nice circuit, and is too short for the bother of arranging two cars.  And sadly public transport isn’t an option either: I think the bus goes on Tuesday and comes back on Thursday…  So we’d have to either retrace our steps or bash some tarmac. Continue reading

Portpatrick

Dunskey Castle

You might remember last year when we did the start of the SUW that I’d been very impressed by Portpatrick and thought it would be a good place for a long weekend break with the Missus.  Well, as Man+Dog of our word, we invited her down this weekend and it was great.  We’d even ordered beautiful weather and were not disappointed: always worth a bit of advanced planning.  In this post we’ll combine two of our walks to make it look like we had an active weekend and didn’t just spend our time in the (excellent) pub. Continue reading

Glen Trool

Looking east along Glen Trool

Normally when we are in Glen Trool we are heading along the glen to walk the hills at the east end.  Not today, and that was a great idea because we ended up with a 5-star walk (and they are pretty rare).  There was no real plan other than trying to do a bit of the Southern Upland Way at the west end of the glen and add on stuff that looked promising: one of those nice “Where does that path go?” days.  Let’s just say the route was very roughly a figure-of-8 centred around the visitor centre at Glen Trool 1. Continue reading

Notes:

  1. Although it’s currently a building site as they refurbish it, which meant no shop, and hence no lovely Galloway ice-cream.  Update 12-May: full service restored.