Day 1: Cape Wrath – Strathchailleach Bothy

10 miles – cloudy, wet, and windy, occasional sunshine

Toby at Cape Wrath about to place the Hastings Pebble on the cape and set off

A cheery start, with the passengers and driver of the bus from the Durness Ferry all wishing me well. One, Megan, a bright and spirited young woman, bothying alone, took the above photo and accompanied me on my first two miles.

Cape Wrath Lighthouse
The far northern tip of the cape, 700 feet below. Impossible for the heavily back-packed walker to get any nearer

and so the journey began…

Milestone showing I’ve walked 1 mile from the lighthouse – 1 down, 1,229 to go!

and then wilderness.

the first problem was that my route wouldn’t load on my GPS unit; this was potentially disastrous, although just today I could navigate to the bothy quite easily. There was nothing between me and it but six miles of peat bog, so I just had to choose the rest route.

Peat bog comes in different deepnesses and different wetnesses, but it’s generally OK so long as you look before you step – mostly. As the day wore on I was blessed with a strong headwind and driving rain.

I have made disparaging remarks about trekking poles, but thank heavens I had them. Without them, this would have been more difficult, quite dangerous, and in places absolutely impossible with a heavy pack.

the bothy, though unheated was warmed with the good cheer of other hikers.

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