Loch bagging: exploring the freshwater lochs of Scotland

Why Loch Bagging?

Scotland is as much a land of lochs as of mountains. There are over 30,000 lochs and lochans and they make up more than 600 square miles of Scotland's surface area. They hold a LOT of freshwater: Loch Ness alone holds more than all the lakes in England and Wales combined. A survey of Scottish lochs (of which more below) estimated that they held a total of 1,015,814 millions of cubic feet of water. That is almost 200,000 cubic feet per member of the Scottish population. Were we to share that with "a' the bairns o' Adam" (Hamish Henderson, "The Freedom Come All Ye") then each person in the world would get over 130 cubic feet of water (go easy there on that water people, it will take at least a typical week of Scottish rain to replenish it).

However, although there are numerous lists of Scottish hills (Munros, Corbetts, Grahams, Donalds, Scottish Marilyns, Scottish Humps, Scottish Tumps etc) and countless guides to the hills and mountains in these lists, there did not, until now, appear to be analogous lists and resources for Scottish lochs. The aim of this ongoing project is to encourage people to explore Scottish lochs, that is, to take up loch bagging, and to provide resources to assist with this. A loch bagging list should be a useful complement to the various hill lists available: on an outdoor expedition people can add a visit to a loch or two to any Munros or Corbetts climbed. Loch bagging may also appeal to those who love the Scottish countryside but are not fans of scary ridges. Just like Munro or Marilyn bagging, loch bagging should take you to lots of interesting places you might not otherwise have gone. They might suit Munro compleatists in their later years who, having compromised their hips or knees with bashing up hills, now prefer gentler pursuits in The Great Outdoors. Even if not intending to bag lochs, if you download the gpx waypoints for the lochs on to your GPS device or your phone’s mapping software, it should help make you more aware of your surrounding landscape, whether on foot, bike, or on a road trip.

As noted, Scotland has more than 30,000 freshwater lochs and lochans so, to be a practical proposition, a loch bagging list needs to prune this number down very significantly. The solution adopted here was to use The "Bathymetrical Survey of the Freshwater Lochs of Scotland, 1897-1909" by Sir John Murray and Lawrence Pullar as the basis of the list. The work was published in six volumes: the first two volumes are mainly text (and lots and lots of numbers), the remaining four volumes are mainly plates. It is a more interesting read in places than you might imagine and the plates are both informative and aesthetically pleasing. The full text and plates can be viewed online at the National Library of Scotland. Below is a photograph of lochbagging.org's copy of Volume 1 together with an example of a colour plate, of Loch Affric.

"Scotland is as much a land of lochs as of mountains, so why not mix it up a wee bit?" - Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from the second of the Crawfucian dialogues with Sir Hugh Munro in "The Way of The Loch Bagger")

As a list for loch bagging, the Murrays list is not ideal but it is a good first pass. Although around 550 lochs are included, some significant and iconic lochs are omitted. This was largely because of difficulties in getting a boat overland to these lochs in order to conduct the bathymetric surveys. Thus, for example, in the Cairngorm region, Loch Avon, Loch Einich and Loch Etchachan are not included, nor is the Dubh Loch above Loch Muick, nor Lochnagar at the foot of the mountain that takes its name. In addition, although lochs tend not to move about much over the years (and hence the age of the survey is not too problematic as the source of a loch bagging list), some new lochs have been formed by the large scale hydroelectric schemes initiated after publication of the survey. Thus, for example, Loch Faskally at Pitlochry is not included. To deal with these issues, a further loch bagging list is being prepared (500 plus lochs is not nearly enough to keep people busy), for more information see section on "The Meggies" below.

Technical stuff: The Murrays list and its associated GPX waypoint files were created by extracting four figure ordnance survey grid references for 565 lochs from a table prepared from Murray's survey by the National Library of Scotland. The loch names and regions they lay in were also extracted from Murray's tables. These four figure OS grid references had a constant of 5 added to each of the eastings and northings to create six figure grid references with the waypoints centred in the relevant 1 km squares (rather than in the bottom left hand corner of each square km as would be the case with the original four figure references). The new grid references were then converted to latitude and longitude expressed in decimal degrees. The latitude and longitude data, the loch's name, its Murray number and its region were then marked up with GPX tags to create a GPX file of independent waypoints. The numbering for the Murrays is based simply on the alphabetical order of the regions the lochs lie in, and a second layer ordering by loch name within each region. Because the grid references for each loch referred to a square km, some lochs shared a grid reference and therefore their GPX waypoints would exactly overlie each other. To sort this the more precise latitude and longitude data were obtained for these waypoints (this was done for 18 of the lochs in the Murrays list. Finally, many of our major lochs (e.g., Awe, Ericht, Lomond, Ness, Tay etc) had two entries or more (e.g., upper section, lower section) these were condensed down to one waypoint per loch. Finally, some other minor issues were dealt with (one loch was referenced under three different names, some lochs had been absorbed into others as part of a hydro scheme, etc). The final Murrays list consisted of 544 lochs.

To view a table of all 544 Murrays click here . The Murrays are also displayed below as pins on Google's My Map:

"Always strive to balance the Yin and Yon. For each Yin o' they mountains climbed, bag ane o' Yon lochs." - Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from the fourth of the Crawfucian dialogues with Confucius in "The Way of The Loch Bagger")

What are the rules for loch bagging?

There is only one. To claim a Murray you simply need to put your hand in the water of the loch (or on the ice if in winter). This seemed an obvious and straightforward rule and falls midway between only having sight of it and, at the other extreme, swimming its length or circumnavigating it on foot. The rule pretty much creates a clean slate (that may be viewed as a good or bad thing): someone may previously have been to many a loch but may be hard pressed to remember if they dipped their hand in any given one.

An alternative, first suggested by Ian Hamilton but since by others, is to to gather a little of the water and use it in a dram. The Lochbagging Executive Council (that'll be me) has ruled that this latter suggestion must be viewed as an optional extra. So folks, if the dram idea appeals and you are gathering water, it has to be gloveless (and no pipettes).

"So we have that E = c, where E is the level of ecstasy experienced, and c is the loch count. Note that, in this model, there are no diminishing returns; ecstasy increases linearly with the number of lochs bagged". - Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from the third of the Crawfucian dialogues with Albert Einstein in "The Way of The Loch Bagger")

GPX Waypoints for The Murrays

To get the entire list of 544 Murrays as GPX waypoints download the file “Lochbagging_The_Full_Murrays_v1.gpx” below. The GPX file can be downloaded to your PC, dedicated GPS handheld device, phone, or tablet. As it is simply a list of individual waypoints, there should be no problems displaying it (with the exception of those using the OS map app; see Note 1 below for a workaround). Each waypoint is named, e.g., “Aboyne, Loch of” and is labelled with its Murray number and the region it lies in, e.g., "(M1, Aberdeen)".

Most mapping/GPS software will allow you to unhide/hide waypoints. If the waypoints make your maps too cluttered then only load them/unhide them when required. It should be possible within your mapping/GPS software to edit a waypoint to change the default symbol to another colour (or other symbol) if you want to record for yourself whether you have bagged it.

Here is the GPX file: Lochbagging_The_Full_Murrays_v1.1.gpx; this link allows you to view the file and then have the option of downloading it. To download it directly click here. Either way please read the "Safety and Related Issues" page before using this file for loch bagging.

Note 1: If you use the OS map app or OS online mapping then be aware that for some unfathomable reason (no pun intended) they will not display a gpx file of independent waypoints (unlike virtually every other mapping app). They also will not let users create their own list of independent waypoints, only routes can be created (it won't even let you save a single dropped pin) . As a (admittedly horrible) workaround I have created a route file version of the Murrays but the mass of unwanted lines connecting the lochs may drive you to distraction; I suppose it would allow someone to do all the Murrays in (an essentially arbitary) order but that would have to be a gimmick for charity and a sizeable donation would be required I imagine. I have contacted the OS to see if they can add the ability to view a gpx file of independent waypoints (it would be useful to many others for many other purposes so hopefully it might happen: if you would like to display the standard loch bagging gpx waypoints files on OS maps then please contact them and thereby lend weight to my plea). Here are the Murrays as a route file: Lochbagging_The_Full_Murrays_ROUTE_VERSION_v1.1.gpx ; this link allows you to view the file and then download it. To download it directly click here. Either way please read the "Safety and Related Issues" page before using this file for loch bagging(this link allows you to view the file and then download it download, right click on the link and select the "save as" option. Please read the "Safety and Related Issues" page before using this file for loch bagging).

To illustrate how the Murray waypoint files display on a phone, a screen capture from the excellent mapping app “UK Map” (for iPhone) is presented below:

""I would walk 500 miles, and I would walk 500 more. Just to be the man who walks a thousand miles to bag bonny Loch Duartmore." (Murray No. 503 ) - Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from the sixth of the Crawfucian dialogues with The Proclaimers in "The Way of The Loch Bagger")

Summit Photo: Meet the Dipping Shot

Hopefully people will take images of their loch bagging. If so, these can be shared on the loch bagging facebook page. There should be lots of creative possibilities to get shots that feature the loch bagger's hand and simultaneously manage to capture the character of the loch. The best shots would probably require a second party and a ground level perspective so it may be a muddy business but, hey, getting covered in mud is an integral part of being in the great outdoors in Scotland.

The author dipping his hand into Fionn Loch, in Assynt (Murray No. 506). Note the assured, classic, loch bagging style: the hand is relaxed and there is none of the unseemly, ostentatious splashing that could give the sport a bad name.

Some skilful paw dipping on display as the Evans family bag the Lake of Menteith (Murray No. 321)

Ah, the unexpected romantic side of loch bagging: the Timmermans bag Loch Esk, high above bonny Glen Doll (not a Murray, but a Crawford, No. 61 )

"I hear, I know. I see, I remember. I do, I understand. I loch bag" - Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from the fifth of the Crawfucian dialogues with Confucius in "The Way of The Loch Bagger")

Fife's Got Everything! (Including a Loch Bagging List)

As a Fifer I thought I should do up a loch bagging list (The Archies) for the lochs of Fife (49 lochs). All lochs named on OS 1:25k mapping are included. The lochs are quite varied, ranging from the very picturesque to the strictly utilitarian; it does include a large number of reservoirs (some of which are modest in size). Ten of these lochs are also Murrays (e.g., Loch Fitty, Pepermill Dam, Lindores Loch, etc), so its two for the price of one on these lochs folks. Enjoy, and see if you can be the first to bag them all. Post to the lochbagging facebook page if you complete them or if you spot any omissions/errors. The list is named after my father who, appropriately enough, was brought up in Lochgelly. "Fife's got everything" is, of course, the title of a song from the late and great John Watt (lyrics here).

The WalkFife website has walking routes (which include downloadable gpx files) that cover a good number of the Archies (and much more besides).

Here is the GPX file: Lochbagging_The_Archies_(Fife)_v1.0.gpx; this link allows you to view the file and then have the option of downloading it. To download it directly click here. Either way please read the "Safety and Related Issues" page before using this file for loch bagging.

To view the list (with grid ref and elevation) of the 49 lochs that comprise the Archies (and have the option of downloading the word document for use as a tick list), click here.

The Archies are displayed below as pins on a Google Map:

"Carpe Diem; Carpe Lochan." - Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from the second of the Crawfucian dialogues with Horace in "The Way of The Loch Bagger")

Take a Deep Dive Into the Cairngorms National Park! (pun intended): Loch Bagging the Cairngorms

Here is a loch bagging list (the Crawfords) for the Cairngorms National Park. It includes ALL lochs and lochans (141 in total) named on OS mapping (if I missed any let me know). The Cairngorms National Park extends well beyond the central Cairngorms massif and covers an area of 4528sq km / 1748sq miles. This list is definitely one for the fit, experienced and committed walker and, for some lochs (e.g., Lochan Uaine, below the Angel's Peak), for the committed mountaineer. The lochs are enormously varied, ranging from remote and magnificent Loch Avon, to tiny lochans set deep in old pine forests, to tourist hotspots, such as Loch Morlich. Nine of the lochs/lochans are above Munro height (914m), and 23 above Corbett height (762m). The highest, Lochan Buidhe , sits at 1122 metres (to the north of the summit of Ben Macdui). Note that the Pools of Dee (on the Braeriach/Cairn Toul plateau) were also included because, although they scarcely qualify as even a lochan, they are the source of the Dee; these are even higher at 1213m. The list also contains the marvellously named "Loch Loch", north-east of the Beinn a' Ghlo mountain range.

Some of the highlights of this list, in my view, include: Loch Avon, Loch Einich [Eanaich] (surrounded by the Sgorrans to the west and Braeriach/ Cairn Toul to the east), Lochnagar (sitting below the cliffs of the mountain that bears its name); An Lochan Uaine (a.k.a. the Green Lochan, in the Ryvoan Pass), Lochan Mor (a.k.a. the Lilly Loch: beautiful and very accessible from the B970 directly opposite the Coylumbridge Hilton); Loch Brandy, above Glen Clova; and Loch Lee, in upper Glen Esk (which is surrounded by a marvellous horseshoe of hills at its western end, including Craig Maskeldie and Hunt Hill). A further loch that is charming and very accessible (but, surprisingly, is not named on any OS mapping and therefore not in the list) sits at the foot of the birk clad cliffs of Craigellachie in the Craigellachie Nature Reserve at NH 888 124, just above Loch Puladdern (it features in the banner for this site).

Twenty of the lochs in this list are also in the Murrays list, so it is two for the price of one on these lochs.

This list was named as the Crawfords because: its a Scots name; its not taken by an existing hill list or loch list; and because (vanity, vanity, thy name.. ) its my surname. Afterthought: if we play our cards right we might even get provided with some whisky or shortbread as a prize for the first compleatist (if the next new lochbagging list is entitled "Globex Financial and Accounting Services" then you will know that this line of thinking has gone too far).

The indispensable WalkHighlands website has walking routes (which include downloadable gpx files) that cover a good number of the Crawfords (and much more besides).

Here is the GPX file: Lochbagging_The_Crawfords_(Cairngorms)_v1.1.gpx; this link allows you to view the file and then have the option of downloading it. To download it directly click here. Either way, please read the "Safety and Related Issues" page before using this file for loch bagging. Some of the lochs on this list can be accessed from the roadside but others are major, high level expeditions, please follow the link on the page for the WalkHighlands guide to safety in the mountains.

To view the list (with grid ref and elevation) of the 141 lochs (and have the option of downloading the word document for use as a tick list), click here.

The Crawfords are displayed below as pins on a Google Map:

Always uplifting to pass these boundary markers: the air is sweeter; the views are grander; the birdsong more melodious (capercaillie excepted); the pines more ancient ...

If climbing some of the remoter mountains, why not stop to visit the lochs? View is from Beinn Mheadhoin to Loch Etchachan (which has a tiny sibling) and across to Ben Macdui.

Remote Loch Avon (pronounced "An") with the edge of Loch Etchachan on the right of the shot

An Lochan Uaine (the Green Lochan), in the Ryvoan Pass, showing it is aptly named

"Make loch lists, not war; its hermless." - Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from the third of the Crawfucian dialogues with Sun Tzu and Michael Marra in "The Way of The Loch Bagger")

Lochbagging Scotland's Regional Parks: Three New Loch Lists

Aside from its two National Parks (Loch Lomond & the Trossachs, and the Cairngorms), Scotland has three Regional Parks in the central belt. They consist of areas of attractive (upland) countryside, near some of our major towns and cities (more are proposed). The three parks are: The Clyde / Muirsheil Regional Park, the Lomond Hills Regional Park, and the Pentland Hills Regional Park . The lochbagging lists for these parks contain all lochs named on OS 1:25k mapping (or named elsewhere). The lists are short, and for the Lomonds and Pentlands, the lochs are concentrated in a relatively small area. The latter two parks are perfect for outings that combine fine hill walking and loch bagging. Note that some of the lochs in all three of these lists are also Murrays. But wait, there's more! The Lomonds list is a subset of the Archies (the complete Fife lochbagging list; see above). That means that lochbagging.org can offer three-for- the- price- of-one on some of these lochs (if you are getting overexcited at that prospect Crawfucius tells me you should try going ommmmmm for a bit followed by a wee cup of tea).

Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park

Lomond Hills Regional Park

Pentland Hills Regional Park

The theme for the naming of these three lists is Scottish traditional song and culture. "The Hendersons" is named after that giant of Scottish culture, Hamish Henderson. He lived most of his live in Edinburgh (hence an association with the Pentlands) where he worked at the School of Scottish Studies. Thanks to him we have early recordings of ballad singers such as Jeannie Robertson, the Stewarts of Blair, etc (as preserved in The Kist O' Riches / Tobar an Dualchais). He also wrote major songs that have been absorbed into the tradition (e.g., The 51st Highland Division's Farewell to Sicily and, what many think should be our national anthem, The Freedom Come All Ye) . "The Redpaths" is named after Jean Redpath, a singer and folklorist who was brought up in Leven, Fife (hence an association with the Lomond Hills). "The Buchans" are named after Norman Buchan, who lived in Rutherglen and was MP for Renfrewshire and later Paisley (hence an association with Clyde/Muirsheil). He was a very influential figure in the folk song revival through his Ballads Club and he published the book 101 Scottish Songs which provided a starting repertoire for many a singer.

Here is the GPX file for The Hendersons (9 lochs): Lochbagging_The_Hendersons_(Pentland_Hills_RP)_v1.0.gpx; this link allows you to view the file and then have the option of downloading it. To download it directly click here. Either way please read the "Safety and Related Issues" page before using this file for loch bagging. To view the list (with grid ref and elevation) of the 9 lochs that comprise the Hendersons (and have the option of downloading the word document for use as a tick list), click here.

Here is the GPX file for The Buchans (39 lochs): Lochbagging_The_Buchans_(Clyde_Muirsheil_RP)_v1.0.gpx; this link allows you to view the file and then have the option of downloading it. To download it directly click here. Either way please read the "Safety and Related Issues" page before using this file for loch bagging. To view the list (with grid ref and elevation) of the 39 lochs that comprise the Macgregors (and have the option of downloading the word document for use as a tick list), click here.

Here is the GPX file for The Redpaths (7 lochs): Lochbagging_The_Redpaths_(Lomond_Hills_RP)_v1.0.gpx; this link allows you to view the file and then have the option of downloading it. To download it directly click here. Either way please read the "Safety and Related Issues" page before using this file for loch bagging. To view the list (with grid ref and elevation) of the 7 lochs that comprise the Redpaths (and have the option of downloading the word document for use as a tick list), click here.

All three lists are displayed together below as pins on a Google map:

"Turn On, Tune In, Drop By A Loch." - Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from the seventh of the Crawfucian dialogues with Timothy Leary in "The Way of The Loch Bagger")

Immerse Yourself in The Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park! (pun intended): Lochbagging the Muirs

Here is a lochbagging list, The Muirs, for Scotland's second National Park, the Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park (LLT NP). The LLT NP covers 1,865 sq km (720 sq miles). The list contains all 68 lochs and lochans named on Ordnance Survey 1:25k mapping (please contact lochbagging if you spot any missing lochs). Note that some of the lochs in this list are also Murrays. There are fewer lochs here than in the Cairngorms National Park list (141 lochs; see earlier section) but many are larger, not least Loch Lomond itself and Loch Katrine. Like the Cairngorms list, bagging these lochs will take you to varied and strikingly beautiful parts of the country. Both are perfect for combining hill and loch bagging (The LLT NP contains 21 Munros).

The list was named after John Muir, the explorer, naturalist and conservationist who was born in Dunbar (see picture of him below). It seemed particularly fitting to name this list after Muir as Sections 1 and 2 of the long distance walking route, The John Muir Way, pass through the southern part of the LLT NP. Moreover, John Muir was the prime mover in the formation of the first National Parks, in the USA. There is a powerful song about Muir, "Muir and The Master Builder", by Brian McNeill that is well worth a listen: lyrics here and audio here via YouTube.

Map of the Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park

Loch Lomond

John Muir (is it just me, or does he look a bit like our very own Crawfucius in that shot?)

Here is the GPX file for "The Muirs" (68 lochs): Lochbagging_The_Muirs_(LLT NP)_v1.0.gpx. This link allows you to view the file and then have the option of downloading it; alternatively, to download it directly click here. Either way, please read the "Safety and Related Issues" page before using this file for loch bagging. To view the list (with grid refs and elevation data) of the 68 lochs that comprise The Muirs (and have the option of downloading the word document for use as a tick list), click here.

The Muirs are displayed below as pins on a Google map:

"Oh roaming in the gloaming by the bonny banks of Clyde, roaming in the gloaming wi' a fellow lochbagger by your side.... Hoots mon! Even though I say so myself there might be a song in that Harry." - Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from the fourth of the Crawfucian dialogues with Sir Harry Lauder in "The Way of The Loch Bagger")

An' I'll gang oot ower the hills tae the lochs o' Gallowa': Lochbagging lists for the Galloway and Tay Forest Parks

In addition to its two National Parks and three Regional Parks, Scotland also has six Forest parks . However, three of these lie either entirely within, or largely within, a National Park (i.e.,Glenmore Forest park, in The Cairngorms NP; Queen Elizabeth, and Argyll Forest Parks in The Loch Lomond and The Trossachs NP) and are thus covered by existing lochbagging lists. Lochbagging lists were generated for two of the remaining three Parks: The Galloway Forest Park and Tay forest Park.

The Galloway Forest Park was formed in 1947 and covers 774 square km (299 square miles). It is sometimes referred to as the "highlands of the lowlands" and contains many of the Galloway Hills within its boundary. The long distance walking route, The Southern Upland Way passes through it. The Park has 66 lochs named on OS 1:25k mapping. There is a bit of confusion (in my mind at least) as to the boundaries of the park. For example, Spectacle Loch seems clearly not to be in the boundaries but is referred to as "set in the Galloway Forest Park" on the Forest Park website (link above). If it transpires that this loch (and others referred to) are actually in the Forest park they will be added later. The Galloway Forest Park list was named "The Jeannies" for Jeannie Robertson (OBE; if you are in to such things), probably the greatest ballad singer Scotland has produced. She lived most of her settled life in Aberdeen but was well known for her version of the song "The Gallowa' Hills". You can listen to her singing it on the newly created lochbagging YouTube channel. The song is delivered in her typical "stately" style (i.e., slower than most versions) but it will draw you in (I hope).

The Tay Forest Park is a very different beast from The Galloway Forest Park: it consists of a patchwork of separate forests spread out between Loch Rannoch in the west, Loch Tay in the south, Glen Errochty in the north, and Pitlochry in the east (see map image below). It covers 229 square km in total and contain 16 lochs named on OS 1:25k mapping. The Tay Forest Park list was named "The Robs" after Rob Roy MacGregor: the Rob Roy Way passes through the Forest Park.

Map of the Galloway Forest Park (boundary in purple)

Map of the Tay Forest Park (purple outlines the areas falling within the park)

Here is the GPX file for "The Jeannies" (66 lochs): Lochbagging_The_Jeannies_(Galloway FP)_v1.0.gpx. This link allows you to view the file and then have the option of downloading it; alternatively, to download it directly click here. Either way, please read the "Safety and Related Issues" page before using this file for loch bagging. To view the list (with grid refs and elevation data) of the 66 lochs that comprise The Jeannies (and have the option of downloading the word document for use as a tick list), click here.

The Jeannies are displayed below as pins on a Google map:

Here is the GPX file for "The Robs" (16 lochs): Lochbagging_The_Robs_(Tay FP)_v1.0.gpx. This link allows you to view the file and then have the option of downloading it; alternatively, to download it directly click here. Either way, please read the "Safety and Related Issues" page before using this file for loch bagging. To view the list (with grid refs and elevation data) of the 16 lochs that comprise The Robs (and have the option of downloading the word document for use as a tick list), click here.

The Robs are displayed below as pins on a Google map:

"I came; I saw; I lochbagged." - Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from the third of the Crawfucian dialogues with Gaius Julius Caesar in "The Way of The Loch Bagger")

Coming Soon: The Meggies

Work is underway on a new Scotland wide loch bagging list, "The Meggies" . This list will be shorter than the Murrays but (a) will add the major or iconic lochs not surveyed by Murray & Pullar and therefore not in the Murrays list (e.g., Loch Avon, Loch Einich, and Loch Etchachan in the Cairngorms), and (b) will give more accurate waypoint locations (for all lochs) than the square km grid references used by Murray; it will also include elevation data).

So, why call this new list "The Meggies"? A couple of reasons: first, it is a guid scots name; second, it is not already taken by a hill list or existing lochbagging list; and third Meg is the name of our small but perfectly formed dog (see below). When this list is completed it will be posted here and potential users alerted via the lochbagging facebook page.

Even as a pup Meg often had to be given a talking to for excessive loch dipping

Meg searching out lochs at the Linn of Tummel

Meg at Loch Muick (Murray No. 5) attempting to gather the wherewithal to make her own loch back home

Meg celebrating having bagged all the Murrays in the Aberdeen region (calm down Meg there are only seven)

"Ich bin ein lochbagger." - Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from the sixth of the Crawfucian dialogues with John F. Kennedy in "The Way of The Loch Bagger")

Are You In The Process of Compiling Any Other Lists (You Saddo)?

Yes, I am afraid I am. I am currently working on a GPX waypoints list for Scottish river confluences (i.e., meetings of the waters). This list of waypoints is NOT intended for bagging but simply for interest. That is, with the confluences marked, you can look out for them on a walk or road trip (particularly in hilly terrain, roads often run alongside rivers and therefore many confluences occur very near to roads). The confluences definitely help you develop more awareness of the landscape. Moreover, although a hard nosed empiricist like myself does not want to wax all mystical, many of them feel like special places (I may include some of the folklore surrounding confluences at a later stage).

The aim is to provide GPX waypoint files of the confluences for scotland's major rivers from source to sea . A completed example for the River Don is described below; the Dee and Spey confluences should follow soon.

Confluences for the Don

The River Don (gaelic: Deathan) runs for approximately 80 miles from its source to its mouth just north east of Old Aberdeen. The source lies in the rough land between Glen Avon and Glen Builg in the West, and Corgaff in the East. Its official source is on Brown Cow Hill (NJ 230 045), there is a spot on this ridge (NJ 19523 06739), just north of Little Geal Charn, marked "Well of Don". The Brown Cow Hill ridge is a significant tipping point: its north slopes drain into the Don (via the Meoir Veannaich and Feith Bhait), its west slopes into the River Avon (and hence to the Spey) and its south slopes into the River Gairn (and hence to the Dee). The Don comes into being with the confluence of the Allt Tuileach and Allt Veannaich. Thereafter its tributaries are the Liana Burn, Tallin Burn, Burn of Loinherry, Cock Burn, Milltown Burn, Allt Damh, Delavine Burn, Corriehoul Burn, Burn of Tornahaish, Garchory Burn, Little Burn, Conrie Water, Ernan Water, Water of Carvie, River Bardock, Water of Nochty, Burn of Bluefold, Burn of Deochry, Deskry Water, Water of Buchat, Kindie Burn, Back Burn of Towie, Burn of Towie, Mossat Burn, Leochel Burn, Esset Burn, Bents Burn, Keig Burn, Craiglaggan Burn, March Burn, Dalau Burn, Gullie Burn, Cluny Burn, Marshes Burn, Burn Hervie, River Urie (by far the most significant of the tributaries), Tuach Burn, Newmill Burn, Black Burn, Goval Burn, and Bucks Burn.

Here is the GPX file: Confluences_Don_v1.0.gpx , this link allows you to view the file and then have the option of downloading it. To download it directly click here. Either way please read the "Safety and Related Issues" page before using this file for outdoor activities.

Here is the ROUTE version (i.e. only required for those who want to use the OS mapping app, see Note 1 above) : Confluences_Don_ROUTE_VERSION_v1.0.gpx. this link allows you to view the file and then have the option of downloading it. To download it directly click here. Either way please read the "Safety and Related Issues" page before using this file for outdoor activities.

The confluences of the Don are displayed below on a scan of an antique map, and below that as pins on a Google's My Map.

Image courtesy of The Doric Columns ( www.mcjazz.f2s.com/)

"So we have that F = ma, where F is fulfilment, m = Munros climbed and a = lochs achieved. Note that, for any given value of m + a, F is maximised when m = a, so balance is the key. This is clearest at the extremes where, even if m is at its upper bound (of 282), fulfilment (F) = 0 when a = 0. Q.E.D." -Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from the third of the Crawfucian dialogues with Sir Isaac Newton in "Principia Mathematica Lochbaggica")

Loch Bagging / Lake Bagging Outwith Scotland?

I hope some people will take up the cudgels and prepare loch/lake lists and associated GPX waypoints for other countries. There may be some unique challenges involved: Lake Eyre in South Australia is larger in area than the British Isles but on many maps it is marked as "not a permanent feature". I am nevertheless likely to lean on my Aussie mates to get waypointing (you know who you are).

"Yes Miss Poppins, standing here in this light, Loch Voil does indeed look 'awfa fine'. Let me teach you a word that lochbaggers use for such moments: supercalifragilisticexpialidocious." - Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from the fourth of the Crawfucian dialogues with Mary Poppins in "The Way of The Loch Bagger")

If you find these resources useful please consider making a small donation (or even joining) one of these causes that I support (click on images for their websites):

"There wis a blythe lass frae Ardrossan, wha' jist widna keep oot o' yon lochan. She bagged it by nicht, she bagged it by day, an' fair set the toon's folk a' talkin'. " - Crawfucius, 2018 CE

(from "The Norton Anthology of Later Crawfucian Poetry [1700-2018]" )

(Prof) John R Crawford, Aberdeen, 2018

Email: lochbagging at gmail.com (replace the " at " with @)

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