Coast To Coast new John Muir Way is close to opening.
This new 134-mile lowlands trail will officially open on 21st April 2014, during the first ever Scottish John Muir Festival, to mark both the conservationist’s birthday and the centenary of his death. The new trail which runs between Dunbar and Helensburgh echoes John Muir’s own personal journey growing up in Scotland’s east coast town of Dunbar before travelling to the west coast, where he set sail for life in America. The route has been designed to take in castles, historic towns and villages, stunning coastal scenery as well as Scotland’s first national park, Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park.
The John Muir Way has much to offer and some may wish to undertake the challenge of walking or cycling the whole 215km route. The route is designed to be accessible for everyone and the terrain is easy-to-moderate and can be done end-to-end on foot or by bike.
For cyclists, it is recommended that hybrid or sturdy touring bikes are used to tackle some of the steeper and bumpier sections, although a few parallel lines or braids give smoother and flatter options. It is estimated that cycling the route will usually take about four days.
The hard work involved in developing the route is being carried out by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH). Ron McCraw of SNH, said, “We hope the John Muir Way will inspire people to both explore and protect Scotland’s countryside. John Muir was inspired by the wildlife and beautiful scenery in Scotland as a young boy, and as an adult in the U.S. he inspired people around the world with his writing. We’re hoping plenty of other people – from both inside and outside of Scotland – will enjoy this new coast-to-coast route and learn more about Muir’s beliefs.”
To get updates about the John Muir Way route, visit ‘John Muir Way – Slighe Iain Muir’ Facebook page, and to find out more about the John Muir Festival visit ‘The John Muir Festival 2014’ Facebook page. For further information about the John Muir Way, visit www.johnmuirway.org – a new dedicated website for the 134-mile route with key information to help people plan their trip. Features include an interactive map and section descriptions, nearby attractions, accommodation, food and drink providers and details on accessibility.
Photo caption: On the John Muir Way by Linlithgow Palace