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Backpacker's Britain: Northern Scotland (Cicerone Backpacking): 3 Paperback – 1 Jul 2006
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'It's an interesting point to note, but a fairnumber of us Scots are more familiar with European locations than we are with our own country. This may be, in part, due to the number of bargain holiday destinations abroad, but with increasing emphasis on 'Scottishness', Gaelic and our heritage, exploring our own country may just be creeping into the minds of many. And rather than take the easy way out by joining a coach tour of the 'important' bits of Scotland, or taking the car and staying at generic hotels and inns, there is always the option of roughing it a bit, and backpacking through the wilds to find out what this country is really like. Since this isn't quite the easy option that can be comfortably handled by your local travel agent, a guide to how to partake of the great outdoors is a recommended first step. Such a guide has been produced by the experts in the field (if you'll pardon the pun) at Cicerone Press, who recently published the third volume in their series 'Backpacker's Britain'. This volume concerns the Highlands and Islands of Northern Scotland and is comprehensively written by Graham Uney who operates Wild Ridge Adventures, a company specializing in just the very holidays to which I referred above. The book covers a total of thirty multi-day trips covering the area north of the Great Glen along with Skye, the Outer Hebrides and Orkney and Shetland. Before launching into descriptions of each particular hike, Uney comprehensively covers the dos and don'ts of backpacking, even down to the composition of a daily diet to make sure you're not stuck in the wilds suffering from hunger knock. So if Torremolinos, Majorca and Tenerife leave you cold (metaphorically speaking), this may well be the time to kit yourself with the appropriate outdoor gear and go and find out just what a wonderful country Scotland really is.' (Ileach Newspaper / March 07) 'The author Graham Uney has used his extensive knowledge to provide the reader with a really useful guide giving detail of Tourist Information, transport links, accommodation and supply points. Each day has a detailed description of the route and terrain leaving the reader in doubt what to expect. The book is aimed at anyone with a love of wild mountain and coastal walking. I liked the layout and overall feel of this backpackers guide and even if you don't contemplate walking the routes it is good enough to inspire you or give as a gift to a friend. Graham writes for a number of outdoor and wildlike magazine, his knowledge and expertise shows through on each page of this excellent guide.' (Strider / April 2007) 'In my early days as a mountaineer, the Highlands and islands of Northern Scotland became a regular haunt of mine. For me, the mark of a good guidebook is one that makes you want to get out among the mountains, and Uney's guide has that in spades. The Highlands of Scotland are one of Britain's great wilderness areas, particularly the far north. Backpackers venturing into this remote area get a true sense of being away from it all, and this book gives a superb starting point for those wanting to explore this wonderful mountain region. The book is 'back-pack' size and attracively produced. The author writes well with a real love for both the area and the adventure. Browsing through his descriptions of the areas that I know best made me all nostalgic. Now, where's my Trangia...?' (Irish Mountain Log / Spring 2007) Check out the reviews on the following websites: Undiscoveredscotland.co.uk Lothianlife.co.uk
About the Author
Graham Uney's love of the mountains has taken him to all corners of the UK and further afield to the Himalayas, North Africa and Europe. He indulges in his passions for backpacking, hill walking, rock climbing, winter mountaineering, orienteering and wildlife watching at home in the highlands of Scotland.
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Something to point out is I would like to point out is that all but 1 of the routes are 2 day (1 night) routes which might not be helpful to some people. The one 3 day route however was very good as we did it last weekend as a wild camp.
A minor gripe I would also like to point out is that all distances are in km, so every time I look at a walk I have to convert it to miles. Very strange considering most other walking guides have both units.
Overall it's a book more for inspiration than a walking guide. If some more detailed maps were added and maybe a few more longer routes (or even extended variations to walks) then it would be a 5 star book as I can't fault the actual walk itself.
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