On 5th March 2022 I set out solo to walk the length of the UK. I had four months free and wanted to fill it with a continuous adventure, and explore as many as possible of my own country’s long distance paths. Staying in the UK removed the stresses of language barriers and solo foreign travel, and meant I could be joined at regular intervals by friends and family, something which proved to be one of the highlights. Prior to this the longest walk I’d ever done was 2 weeks and I was also curious to see what would happen to me, mentally and physically, as the miles clocked up. This is an account of that journey, broken into the four chapters that defined the walk in my head.
I started off in March taking the South West Coast Path as far as Plymouth, then I followed the 2 Moors Way across Dartmoor and Exmoor to meet up with the end point of 2020's attempt number 1. From here it was a bit more improvised following part of the Macmillan Way West and the Monarch’s Way into Bristol.
For April it was a temporary bye bye to England and across the Severn Bridge into Wales where I briefly followed Offa’s Dyke and picked up the high level Cambrian Way through the Welsh mountains. On reaching the edge of Snowdonia I then turned away from established trails and cut across the mountains to Llangollan where I picked up a series of canals and the Dane Valley Way to take me to Edale.
At this point I gained my Dad's company and May saw us doing the complete Pennine Way from Edale to Kirk Yetholm. Then it was Hello to Scotland (and goodbye to Dad) and I followed St Cuthbert’s Way and the Cross Borders Drove Road into the Pentlands Hills, before cutting through the central belt on the Union Canal to pick up the John Muir Way.
Finally in June I joined the West Highland Way through to Fort William and, for the grand finale, walked the entirety of the Cape Wrath Trail.
In the interests of a good story (and assuming that most of my readers are indeed readers, rather than would-be-walkers) I’ve kept the above write ups fairly free of distances and details. For anyone planning their own End to End this next page is a lovely dry list of wild camps, costs and GPX files. Enjoy.