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Newsletter No 28 May 2009

Dear Subscriber

Welcome to our May 2009 newsletter 28. Below are three items: the last two are linked!
1. Cowal Way and Dingle Way
2. Kilimanjaro and Google Earth
3. Virtual Highlands (Scotland)

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1. Cowal Way and Dingle Way

Our new Cowal Way guidebook is about to be released. The Open Day is on Saturday 16 May in Glendaruel. Anybody who has pre-ordered will get their copy mid-May, two weeks ahead of publication date (1 June) - a benefit of dealing direct with us.

The new edition Dingle Way (with several important route updates and many new photographs) will also be released on 1 June (earlier if you have pre-ordered).

2. Kilimanjaro and Google Earth

Lots of people in the UK watched the celebrities on their fund-raising Red Nose Climb up Kilimanjaro on BBC1. I too have been reliving the Lemosho route (used by them) while finalising our new guidebook, due out in August. Meantime we have reduced the price of our existing book, the one taken up Rongai by Chris Bonington and team, to £9.99. So if you are thinking about trekking up Kili, you can get a bargain on this (post-free in UK, subsidised Air Mail elsewhere).

The new high-resolution satellite images of Kili on Google Earth are, literally, a revelation. If you haven’t tried this wonderful program, don't delay. Simply enter Kilimanjaro in the ‘Fly to’ window, then zoom, pan and tilt to explore the mountain. There is no better tool for 3-D visualisation. It lets you explore inside the Reusch Crater without the expense, uncertainty and hardship of trying to get there!

3. Virtual Highlands (Scotland)

We have only just discovered the WalkHighlands website, run by Paul and Helen Webster, a talented couple from Skye. Do visit it if you want to walk in the Scottish Highlands. Whether you're interested in short walks or long, it combines a mass of route information and photographs with proper OS mapping, GPS files and more. Try the Virtual Highlands feature, with advanced Google mapping tools and 3-D visualisation. Not everything works perfectly yet (at least not on a Mac) and the imagery isn't as detailed as on Kili (!), but it's an advanced and compelling use of the technology.

Sharp-eyed visitors may notice that we now link to WalkHighlands direct from our book pages on the Cowal, Kintyre, Great Glen and West Highland Ways. Follow our link, choose a Stage of the walk, then click "view or print map of this route" for more detail. This is really useful, especially when planning walks ahead of time. I just hope it won't mean you stop buying our guidebooks altogether: at least our books don't need electricity and are waterproof!

With best wishes and thanks for reading

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