TGO Challenge 2015

Swinging round the sign at Lac Jovet - 2174m - still smiling after 10k of an uphill (sometimes vertical), altitude trail run!

Swinging round the sign at Lac Jovet – 2174m – still smiling after 10k of an uphill (sometimes vertical), altitude trail run!

When I first moved to Aviemore a few years ago and started to discover the Scottish mountains, the TGO Challenge was one of those dream events that offered the opportunity to spend a whole two weeks exploring the wilds of Scotland by means of a coast to coast backpacking trip.  The challenge has been running for more than 30 years now, and is exceptionally popular with participants being selected using a draw system.  I never seemed to align with the application date and had put the event down to something that I was just never meant to get the change to take part in.  Until now that is.

My adventuring partner in crime, Laraine, and I are constantly conjuring up ‘things’ to do – together, with others, or alone – we always seems to have a plan on the go, and to my delight, Laraine offered up the chance to join her on the TGO Challenge since she had secured a place!

Team 14 Peaks ascending Crib Goch

Team 14 Peaks ascending Crib Goch

The challenge is a self-supported hike across Scotland – the route is mapped by each team themselves and must start in a location on the west coast of Scotland, with the end point being on the east coast – read Laraine’s account for the full logistics.  Our route, which Laraine has kindly (and patiently) mapped takes us through some of Scotland’s most spectacular locations, including; Knoydart, along the Great Glen Way, skirting through the Cairngorms at Glen Feshie and Braemar, and finishing at one of the most beautiful beaches I have ever seen.

In total, we’ll be walking almost 200 miles and for around 12 days – the long term weather forecast looks promising, we may even nab a bit of a Scottish tan.  Planning for such an event requires masses of effort and attention to details – we’re currently working on establishing how many calories we need per day, and what foodstuffs can provide this plus the maximum amount of nutrition, yet weigh a minimal amount – hopefully Laraine’s math skills are a bit better than mine!

Team 14 Peaks on Crib Goch, Wales

Team 14 Peaks on Crib Goch, Wales

Laraine has penned an article for Sealskinz if you are interested in reading a bit more about our challenge – can be found here.

As always, I am fundraising for Yogability – a Glasgow based charity, set up by two of my dear yoga pals, to provide free-of-charge yoga to children and young people with disabilities.  Helen and Debbie do the most amazing work, but as a young charity completely rely on donations and support – please consider making a donation if you are able to do so.

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