A journal of new information received at CTC

Land’s End to John o’Groats

More Blogs

Bolsover Wheelers Group: using lots of video footage rather than words, this could be the format of the future for ride recording. http://bolsoverwheelers-lejog.blogspot.com/

And here’s a great blog from our very own Welna. Plus more videos! http://welna-lejog.blogspot.com/  Do check out the links she suggests to other blogs and sites.

And Clive Williamson’s…

Hello Mark, As I mentioned to you I’m riding LeJog at 80 and thought I should give you the info. I’ve attached the flyer and also the route. I’m following the CTC route as far as Leomister then diverging for various reasons. My route keeps to the west rather than CTC’s more easterly route. A you can see from the flyer, I will be reporting daily on Twitter. http://twitter.com/#!/WilliamsonClive  Normandy gave me a good grounding so I start tasting the pudding on 27th.  Best, Clive (Not certain this link is currently working – sorry Clive.)

And James McCulloch’s Baby Boomer Bike Ridehttp://http://jamesmcculloch1000.wordpress.com/

Using GPS on LEJoG

LEJOG Track Lines

The exciting news for users of GPS is that CTC has taken a cold hard look at what it offers members in the way of satnav assistance on the B&B and YHA routes and what we found wasn’t nice at all. Some while back we had been provided with an excellent track but the link to it disappeared when the site it was on was absorbed by another. It wasn’t until we took the trouble to actually look at what there was on CTC Maps that we realised that a lot of the sections of track were very broken and, in a word or several, pretty *!%?* useless.

We are currently in the process of repairing every section and checking it against the written route, making one or two improvements to the route, providing additional directions within urban areas and finally reducing the number of track points to under 500 so Garmin GPS units can easily have the individual sections of the routes uploaded with no re-configuring necessary.

OK, so it’s going to take time to complete the job but, in the meantime, if you’re about to embark on an End2End and you’re using GPS, get in touch with the CTC Helpdesk and we’ll send you all the updated tracks that are currently ready.

STOP PRESS: A second set of GPS files, kindly donated by the Treeo LEJOG expedition [http://www.treeo.co.uk/] will also be available in the autumn. This route used a mix of the B&B and YHA routes.

Hilleberg Stallen GT

Hilleberg Stallen GT

Cycle Camping LEJoG

 There are no fewer than six additional LEJOG information sheets relating to End2Ends done using a tent as home each night. If you’re planning on doing the trip on a strict budget, get the tent out! Contact the CTC info desk for the LEJOG Camping Sheets.

David & Ian Make It!

 John o'Groats Cyclists Mark –
Just to let you know – we made it!
Both of us needed to wear knee supports for the trip and hadn’t covered long mileages for many years, so we took it easy initially, covering around 40 miles per day, and then ramping up to 70 or so. We were following the CTC B&B route (with detours for accommodation and evening meals), booking B&Bs as we went; however in Cumbria we realised that to make it in time for the pre-booked train journey home (and work!) we had to take a much more direct route through Scotland. We finally made it to JoG after 17 days, leaving one day to visit Dunnet Head and get to Thurso station; overall just over 1000 miles, and 19km climb. Navigation was by Ian’s dissected Philips road atlas and my Garmin Edge 800 loaded with OS 1:50k maps (and a mixture of the E2E routes you sent and ones we created) – an excellent joint arrangement. Weather was typically British – a bit of everything was thrown at us, lots of rain in Scotland, and midday temperature varied from 30C in north England to 5C in the Highlands. Our bikes were both Dawes: Discovery 401 and Super Galaxy, each fitted with rear panniers and front bag. The only mechanical faults were a front gear changer which needed attention at the beginning, one puncture and a squirrel ate through a pannier one lunchtime in search of fruit cake! Would we do it again? Yes – but only once we’ve retired and have a bit more time to savour the British countryside and chat to the many people we met enroute!


Getting Back from J o’G ~ The Kiwis from Christchurch’s Story

We got back last Wednesday. Getting home turned out be a bit of a mission because the railway only let 4 bikes on each train. We  reached John O Groates on a very windy Saturday afternoon, we had to be there before 4-30 cause the old guy that owns the sign post takes it home then.  Its a busy place with people starting & finishing the LeJog ride coming & going all the time. One young lady was so thrilled that she had finished, she picked up her bike,fully loaded panniers & all, & stood there  with it above her head, while her friend took several photos of her, I couldn’t even lift mine. We stayed there the night & on Sunday, cycled the 20 miles back to Thurso, the most northerly town in the UK, we called into Dunnet Head, a very rugged coast line & the most Northerly point on British mainland on the way back. Stayed the night at a rather grubby backpackers, & caught the train to Inverness in the morning, which we had booked 3 days before. It was great to kick back & watch the the wonderful scenery go by, without having to peddle for a change. We stayed at the s,yha, Keith stayed 1 night, he was booked on the 8-45 on Tuesday night, & I stayed 2 nights & started my Journey home 8-00 Wednesday morning, because of the very limited bike spaces on trains. 8 hours later we pulled into Kings Cross, this has to be one of the best train journeys I have ever made. The train hurtles along at speeds up to 126 mph, stops only 6 or 7 times, & you get to see the transition from Scottish Highland to the dead flat  wheat fields of Lincoln, it was brilliant. I changed into my cycling kit on the train & was ready go when we arrived. I cycled across London, a journey which I was rather dreading, cause of all the traffic, but it was brilliant, all the London cabbies & double decker buses give you space & let you get on with it, I rode along the Strand & up the Mall to Buckingham Palace, which was really cool because they still had all the bunting (flags) up from the wedding,I must do more cycling in the City. Just round the corner from the Palace is Victoria  station & the last leg of my journey home. I had been away exactly a month, cycled 1200 miles, seen some amazing scenery & meet some really great people. To date we have raised nearly £2500. I feel very weary still but also a very real sense of achievement. What next.  Hope all is well Thanks for your support. Cheers Ross



Simon Swan’s LEJOG ~ April 2011Simon Swan at LEJOG Finish

 Nicely written with some good pics!  http://www.swan-e.co.uk/lejog-2011/ 

 Simon Swan at Finish LEJOG







 Another Successful LEJOG

This is what we love to hear!


We have now completed our LEJOG adventure and I wanted to say a huge thank you for the information you provided for us.  It was the most valuable asset we had along with the bikes!!  It will be put to good use again as Ian is planning to do the trip again – this time with his son, Adam.

Being able to use the two routes suggested – we combined them to make a B&B route that took in the Caledonian Canal which was a must-see on our list – was just fantastic.  We used them in conjunction with a Garmin Edge 800 on the bike and Bike Route Toaster on the PC – it made such a difference.

I have lots of pictures of the trip along with some valuable information on B&Bs that we would recommend and those we would avoid at all costs.  Our Facebook page was followed closely and all the photos are loaded on there along with videos which are also available on You Tube – technology was great when it worked!  Our website now has its Ride Diary blog in place and, apart from being an entertaining read, might just prove to be a useful tool for anyone planning to undertake LEJOG.  If there is any information, including all that mentioned here, that you would like me to pass on, then please do let me know.

We will all be sending off our information to join the ‘club’ soon as we have everything stamped and dated as required.  Even those of use who drove the route are planning to join.

Thank you again for all your help – and roll on next year!

Kindest Regards


The website ~ http://www.treeo.co.uk/

The blog ~ http://www.treeo.co.uk/c/ride-diary/day-0/


Returning from John o’Groats 

Those seeking advice and information concerning the knotty business of getting themselves and cycles back from John o’Groats can find much useful information in the ‘Practical Section’ of CTC’s End2End pack. You’ll find it even more useful now the links have been checked and corrected where broken. No fewer than two of the four bus companies mentioned have changed. Check out the information here  http://www.ctc-maps.org.uk/routes/route/1024

 Hand cycle E2E

Visit http://www.madmission.co.uk/ to learn about an End2End ride being undertaken on a hand cycle. When Mike Lewis rang us asking us if we could help promote his event I think he was slightly sad to hear that hand cyclists had done the ride before. You only have to look as far as the Images tab on the End2End route (UK1) on CTC-Maps.org.uk. Click on the tab and photos from the 2005 ride I co-led on behalf of the Douglas Bader Foundation will be revealed. We had a couple of hand cyclists on the ride who made it without any bother. Anyway, good luck, Mike!

Charity LEJOG

Came across this and thought it might be of interest to some. Not cheap, but not too expensive either. Looks like the whole thing is well sorted out. http://www.ukend2end.com/index.php

Fully Revised ‘General Information’

A couple of  members made some useful suggestions for additions to this section of the LEJOG pack, which led to a complete re-hash of the section. (This is getting to be a habit, but it needed it!) Members can find it as UK1 in www.ctc-maps.org.uk  

Re-working of ‘Route 3’ – the ‘Faster’ Main Road Route (from the CTC End 2 End / LEJOG Pack

This needed a couple of minor updates so I did some closer reading and decided that all those choices and ferries were confusing. It’s now been heavily revised – at least the route north of Carlisle has been. You have a choice of routes. One sideswipes the western parts of Glasgow to take the Erskine Bridge and follow alongside Loch Lomond, then Rannoch Moor, Pass of Glencoe, Fort Bill and up the Great Glen. Another branches off more directly north, heading up east of Glasgow to reach the A9 northwest of Pitlochry to follow this road to the bitter end (if you really want this much agony). The final two options take you west from Dumfries to the coast. Ferries and beautiful scenery and no Glasgow suburbs to deal with. Definitely the best choices but not perhaps the most direct.  http://www.ctc-maps.org.uk/routes/route/1024

Another End to End blog

All complete now but what little I’ve read of it is interesting and useful for those with the ride still to do. The photos are imaginative too. http://colarcher.wordpress.com/


End to End blog

CTC member John Barlett’s blog is a great resource for anyone who is thinking about doing the End to End in 12 days. If you would like to share your blog with 26,000 other CTC members, please email publicity@ctc.org.uk.

7 responses

  1. Whilst I applaud the efforts of all those who undertake the ‘end-to-end’ journey – particularly those who do it to raise money for worthwhile causes – I am very concerned by the route usually taken and the methods chosen.

    The A9 trunk road north of Tain is lethal – I know, I live there. It is single carriageway with no foot or cycle path, hairpin bends and steep inclines, often with a sheer drop on one side. The road is used by a mixture of local traffic including agricultural vehicles and HGVs, the latter often skidding around on spilt diesel fuel. In the summer months there is a huge rise in the traffic volume: cars, coaches, hundreds of mobile homes and caravans – often with inexperienced drivers, together with foreign tourists occasionally driving on the wrong side of the road.

    The north of Scotland is not simply a ‘leisure area’, as visitors sometimes believe, but also a working environment, with people having to keep appointments; some of them will be on business or delivering goods but others may be doctors or vets on call, emergency vehicles or even people travelling to hospitals. The A9 is our main access route. Introduce into this environment people on bicycles, unicycles, strangely constructed and slow-moving vehicles or heavily-laden walkers and you have a recipe for disaster. Numbers of people are killed and injured on this northernmost stretch of the A9 every year.

    There is an alternative: the recommended route for cyclists follows the southern side of the Dornoch Firth from Tain to Bonar Bridge, then to Altnaharra and along the north coast to JoG. Yes, it’s a longer route, with little in the way of facilities – but it’s quiet, unpolluted and stunningly beautiful. Can I please urge all those planning such a trip to investigate this alternative route and perhaps obviate all of us here spending the summer with our hearts in our mouths for you?

    Best regards,

    Chris. A. Ferne

    Sunnyside, Struie Road, Dornoch IV25 3TA, Sutherland, Scotland

    Tel: 01862 811839 · Mob 07966 233776

    06/09/2010 at 1:23 pm

    • Having completed LEJOG this year I can fully support the comments re. the Altnaharra route. All the bits we were looking for on the ride – “quiet, unpolluted and stunningly beautiful.”

      24/12/2010 at 2:44 pm

  2. I echo what Chris says above.

    We used the JOG-Bettyhill-Altnaharra-Bonar Bridge route on our JOGLE and it’s absolutely stunning, especially the Strahnaver valley between Bettyhill and Altnaharra. This area had some of the best scenery of our whole trip and is not to be missed.

    We did stray onto the A9 between Tain and Dingwall, but it wasn’t pleasant and we were glad to get off it.

    Trevor Adams

    13/10/2010 at 12:53 pm

  3. Do it your way, is my advice. I was going to do it, as per norm, and then decided to do the whole coast for charity (Sustrans) !! Still get to tick the end to end! See the Round Britain-cycle for Health blog or visit http://www.justgiving.com/Graeme-Willgress

    02/11/2010 at 6:48 pm

  4. Accommodation available about 40miles from Lands End. Ideal overnight stop off, small & friendly
    The Victoria Inn, Threemilestone Truro TR3 6BY
    Single room £39.50 inc of a re-fuel breakfast.
    There is garage facility to be able to lock your bikes up over night.
    For more details http://www.thevicinn.com

    13/06/2011 at 2:20 pm

  5. Wise bit of advice to take the Altnaharra route. I have done both the coastal A9 and the Sutherland Flow routes, and can vouch that the latter is by far the better and safer.

    24/06/2011 at 9:11 pm

  6. WOW just what I was searching for. Came here by searching for sustainable development tedx

    21/05/2014 at 3:47 am

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