Long distance routes - official waymarks or not

Date walked: 31/10/2014

When Wainwright devised his English Coast to Coast route he deliberately called it "A Coast to Coast walk", not "The Coast to Coast walk", with the aim of encouraging people to devise their own variations to get from start to finish. I believe the same approach was taken by Cameron McNeish on his Cape Wrath Trail (I really enjoyed devising my own route). I see some good variations have indeed been proposed, but there is already an "official" CWT route emerging.

I was pleased to read the Jay Wilson report on his John O'Groats trail, but I would take issue with the wish for it to become an "official way marked route". I often find that official route designation brings a lot of undesirable baggage with it (e.g. overuse and erosion, commercialisation, loss of wildness).

I would be interested to hear other views on this.

P.S. I would get out more, but I am laid up with an ankle in plaster at the moment after an operation......

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Location: Hitchin, Hertfordshire
Activity: Mountain Walker
Pub: Cluanie Inn
Mountain: Suilven
Place: Kylesku
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