Scotland’s longest walking route, the 470-mile Gore-Tex Scottish National Trail, was officially opened by the First Minister of Scotland, Alex Salmond MSP, on October 30, 2012.
The trail forms Scotland’s first ever end-to-end walking route through Scotland, from Kirk Yetholm in the Scottish Borders (the northern terminus of the Pennine Way) to Cape Wrath, the most north-western point on the British mainland, and has been compiled by author and broadcaster Cameron McNeish, who has also co-authored a Mountain Media book about the route calledScotland End to End.
Meandering through some of Scotland’s most beautiful and rugged landscapes the route follows many existing trails and rights of way and in doing so creates a long distance walking route that compares with the best in the world.
The Gore-Tex Scottish National Trail not only connects some of Scotland’s finest landscapes but it also connects us with the history of those landscapes, a history that has recorded the plundering raids and battles of the Borderlands; the growth of industrialisation in the Central Belt; and the march of armies, saints, drovers poets and vagabonds through these wild lands that have since, in many areas, been emptied of people.
The Gore-Tex Scottish National Trail is a route that enthusiastic backpackers can enjoy as a single entity, taking in some of our most prized and wildest landscapes, or as a series of shorter routes that can be broken down into several sections, each offering a magnificent walking route in its own right.
The route can be walked in its entirely over period of 5-6 weeks or broken down into shorter sections;
• Kirk Yetholm to Edinburgh – 130km/80 miles
• Edinburgh to Milngavie – 82km/51 miles
• Milngavie to Kingussie – 200km/125 miles
• Kingussie to Cape Wrath – 354km/220 miles