Monthly Archives: July 2013

Fisherfields – Ruadh Stac Mor, A’Mhaighdean, Beinn Tarsuinn, Mullach Coire Mhic Fhearchair, Sgurr Ban – (181-185) – 28 July

We were feeling a bit lethargic this morning, no doubt ready for a break after a number of fairly intensive weekends in a row. But, the knowledge that we both had to get round the five Munros AND drive home for work the next day motivated us to get going.

The morning started with wet feet from the word Go, as we trudged through armpit-high reeds and marsh, before crossing the river. Jamie made a token effort by taking her boots off for the crossing; a bit of a waste of time given the soaking they’d had in the first 30 minutes of bog!

Visibility was fine today, though it was intermittently drizzly. Luckily there was also a slight breeze; Jamie couldn’t have handled another day with the midge:Jamie ratio what it was the day before! A bit of scrambling and reaching the milestone of only 100 Munros to go in the challenge were good motivation.

We eventually got back to Shenavall, where (for better or worse) we stopped for a mini-break and hot drink before making our way to the track and route back to the car. After taking her boots off inside the bothy, Andy nearly had to leave Jamie behind when she refused to put the horrible, wet, muddy things back on! The journey to the car was muggy and not especially inspiring, but at least there were cookies waiting in the car!

Thanks to Moira and Monty for confirming via text message that the sixth Fisherfield has, in fact, been demoted to Corbett status, following Jamie’s moment of panic that we were accidentally going to miss out a Munro!

Categories: July (134-185) | Leave a comment

An Teallach -Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill, Sgurr Fiona – (179 & 180) – 27 July

Five word weather: Muggy, with swarms of bugs!

After a late start on the track (we didn’t drive up from Glasgow until the morning) some good scrambling was to be had on the rocky ascents of An Teallach, though not quite as much fun as Jamie remembered from the past given that it was quite damp today.

Along the way we were visited by some curious goats, who made a mockery of Jamie’s lack of sure-footedness by bounding over rocks with ease (motivated, no doubt, by thinking we had food – which motivates Jamie, too!).

We were even fortunate enough to be graced with a Brocken spectre, the rare opportunity to see our own greatly magnified shadows – halos included – against the clouds below.

An otherwise great day was marred by a descent that left a lot to be desired! After being surprised by an expanse of deer fence that needed hopping, we then bashed our way through ferns and tussocks while being eaten alive by swarms of midge. It was right up there with the most miserable Jamie has been so far in the Challenge! This wasn’t helped by the longer-than-anticipated slog to Shenavall bothy, where we were spending the night. At least somehow the other visitors had managed to keep the midge infestation to a minimum inside! We enjoyed the obligatory super noodle supper before settling in for the night, grateful that we were at least earlier to arrive than the two headtorches in the distance (coming down from the Fisherfields, we later learned).

Categories: July (134-185) | Leave a comment

Bla Bheinn & Ben Sgritheall – (177 & 178 ) – 21 July

Five Word Weather: Too sunny? Is that possible?
The sun was shining as we prepared to climb the last of the Munros on Skye. Jamie’s day was highlighted by the fact that she was able to wear not only her purple Oakleys, but purple shorts, too.

It was bound to be a good day!!
Today was hot, hot, hot (by Scotland standards) but at least the start of Bla Bheinn’s approach was via a quick flowing stream. We regularly stopped for cool down splashes and for Jamie to saturate her hat, in awe of how quickly it would dry out. Unprecedented!
The scree on Bla Bheinn was much less tricky than expected and we followed the rocky track to the summit, which offered amazing views across to the Black Cuillin – only 12 hours previously we were climbing it!
To save a bit of time and to add a unique addition to our journey we opted to take the ferry from Kylerhea on Skye to Glenelg on the mainland. As the brochures claim, this is certainly a lovely and scenic way to get to the mainland, not to mention the traditional route before the bridge existed!


We parked up at Arnisdale, where Jamie needed an extra 15 minutes to work up the motivation to get going. Andy looked out onto Knoydart while preparing to start, simultaneously reminding Jamie that it was a VERY long drive to come back here to do this solo Munro in future if she didn’t get her booty in gear soon!
The first 600m or so of ascent were quite nice, marred only by the vicious, indestructible clegs. Just when you thought that surely this one was smooshed to smithereens, it would bounce off of something and come back to bite with a vengeance.
Just when we were feeling bad that none of our mates came to join us, the kind trail deceived us and went from a steady climb to a beastly, steep, crumbly “path” of yuck. We were practically crawling as Jamie began to ponder what life would be like remaining permanently at the top of Ben Sgritheall as it was clear that there was no chance on Earth that she was going to be capable of descending what we were ascending.
And just when it seemed that it was over, the first massive cairn seen was a faker! A bit of descent and some further ascending (this time of a much more reasonable variety!) finally led to the actual summit, brining stunning views of Knoydart and Skye. Worth the crawling ascent? Indeed, but only because by that point we had worked out an alternative descent route! We chilled on the top with snacks for about a half hour before the reality of a 4+ hour drive home prodded us into movement.

Jamie so shocked to see so much sunshine her head actually exploded!

Jamie so shocked to see so much sunshine her head actually exploded!

Descending back toward the saddle toward a herd of deer and contouring round, the effects of the previous day solidly set into Jamie’s knees and it took ages for her to get back to the car. Luckily, Andy had made it back faster – swatting clegs every step of the way – and supernoodles and hot chocolate awaited.
The culmination of an awesome weekend . . . Jamie in a near coma in the car while Andy got us home safely to start yet another work of week in Glasgow!


*While Lorraine didn’t join us for any of the hills this weekend she gets bonus points for maintaining a cheery attitude even after an infected cleg bite led her to have a cankle, a pulsating leg, and a hospital visit!We shudder to think about what that thing had bitten before her leg!

Categories: July (134-185) | 2 Comments

The Cuillin Ridge Traverse – (166-176) – 19 & 20 July

Sun gracing the Skye Cuillin - How lucky are we?!

Sun gracing the Skye Cuillin – How lucky are we?!

In Reverse Order to how we approached them:

Munro

Grade of easiest route

Sgùrr nan Gillean Grade 3 scramble
Am Basteir Grade 2 scramble
Bruach na Frìthe Walk
Sgùrr a’ Mhadaidh Grade 2/3 scramble
Sgùrr a’ Ghreadaidh Grade 3 scramble
Sgùrr na Banachdaich Walk
Sgùrr Dearg Moderate rock climb
Sgùrr MhicChoinnich Grade 2 scramble
Sgùrr Alasdair Grade 2 scramble
Sgùrr Dubh Mòr Grade 2 scramble
Sgùrr nan Eag Grade 1/2 scramble
This Bucket List adventure is the UK’s longest mountaineering ridge; a route that many climbers aspire to complete, with many failing on first attempts. The Cuillin Munros are acknowledged as the hardest to attain and linking them together to tackle in one go is even tougher . . . Bring it on!

To max out our chances for success we had been feverishly watching the weather forecast for months now, waiting for even a marginal period of high pressure to make our attempt. The key to success is also good planning. Lists are helpful, but Jamie had to admit that this time around the study of route descriptions, water sources, and timings was more useful than the snack list. That being said, we did have to make sure we were carrying as near-to-perfect amounts of gear, food, and clothes as possible so our bags were no heavier than absolutely necessary.

The Start!

The Start!

­­­­The weather window had finally arrived so with a last minute use of annual leave on Friday the 19th we loaded up the car, climbing and bivvy gear included, and drove to Skye. With Brendan finally able to join us for a weekend we set up the car shuttle on Friday afternoon, leaving his at Sligachan and driving ours round to Glen Brittle. A quick pic at the start; some last minute pasta shoved down our throats; purchase of some chlorine tablets from the campsite shop; and the questionable note left on the dashboard inviting someone to steal the car and/or its contents because we had been kind enough to advise that we wouldn’t be back for a few days and away we went! Jamie even had some new Scarpa Crux approach shoes for the occasion. Despite not having an opportunity to break them in she decided it was an acceptable risk because they’re grey and purple. Even if they killed her they looked pretty good  (as approach shoes go!)! Note: They were brilliant!!

We left the car at 15:00 on Friday, with the main Coire Lagan path easily followed, offering fantastic views out to Eigg, Rum (which Jamie has reported has a lovely Cuillin Ridge of its very own:) Not that she goes on about it.) and Muck. We topped up our water from the streams feeding the lochan at Coir’ a’ Ghrunnda before the climb up put us solidly on the ridge. We ditched our packs here for a few hours of evening scrambling, taking us over the first of the weekend’s Munros, Sgùrr nan Eag, before Andy, in all his wisdom, motivated us to venture to the proper start of the ridge so that we weren’t depriving ourselves of any of this classic route. At the time it’s safe to say that Jamie and Brendan would have been quite happy with a “that’ll do” by going only as far as the Munro, but in hindsight it’s great to know that we genuinely climbed the whole ridge from start to finish. Friday evening photos:

Packs back on for the relatively short walk out to access Sgùrr Dubh Mòr, which was another opportunity to ditch the bags due to its out-and-back nature. Immature jokes aplenty at the phallic summit before dropping back down to our bags and finding a comfortable (use that word very loosely) bivvy spot near the foot of the TD Gap. We were entertained/concerned by another couple who had decided to venture past the TD Gap before seeking their own bivvy; we could hear their ongoing “conversation” as the girl was clearly finding some of the climbing a bit tricky. Their silence led us to assume that all was ok (and we saw them again the next morning, though not sure if they were still speaking to each other!).

Andy made some supernoodles and we set up our trio of sleeping arrangements: Brendan with his proper, full-length sleeping mat; Andy with his always comfy Thermarest and primaloft sleeping bag; and Jamie, with her 3 feet of egg crate and hanky-weight sleeping bag. The guys were superficially sympathetic but no offers of swapping bedding was forthcoming!

The wind picked up during the night, which was a useful way of keeping the midges away.

Alarm at 0400 (thanks to Brendan for being in less of a coma so he actually heard it!) and the excitement of what lay ahead got us up as if we’d had far more than the actual 4 hours of rest time. Porridge made, “beds” packed, and we made the short walk to the abseil into the TD Gap. Andy dropped down to top up the water bottles again, ensuring that we were each carrying 3L for the day. Brendan led the climb, with Jamie second’ing and Andy following on once water was collected. From there we took the slight detour from the main ridge to the summit of Sgùrr Alasdair.

Summit of Sgùrr MhicChoinnich

Summit of Sgùrr MhicChoinnich

A wise Sir Brendan Ferguson reminded Jamie throughout the day to “Play the match, not the occasion” each time nerves started to creep in that the climbing might be too much for her out-of-practice self. One handhold and foot placement at a time and all was fine, though Jamie had to reference the photos after the day to see what the views were like when climbing (solo’ing) the Inaccessible Pinnacle!

Following Sgurr Alasdair the rest of the day was much more about the ridge traverse than the individual Munro summits – it was a nice change of pace for those to seem like bonuses rather than the purpose of the trip, like most of our other outings this year. The rock on the Ridge (gabbro) is incredibly grippy and coarse . . . as evidenced by Jamie’s peeling fingertips in the weeks following the adventure. Unlike the boys, who hopped, skipped and jumped their way down and around everything without use of their hands. Jamie, on the other hand, felt the need to have at least one hand in contact with the rock every step of the way, like a really sharp security blanket.Statements were made, possibly for the first time ever in the history of Scottish hillwalking, like: “I wish there was more wind;” “It’s too sunny;” “It’s too hot to be doing this;” and “I think I’m getting sunburned.” The mix in the pictures of helmets vs no helmets reflects the few minutes on each summit that we would let our sweaty heads have a breather!

Brendan sailed up Naismith’s Route on the Basteir Tooth, and Andy essentially led it later on a slack rope following behind Jamie so they were climbing simultaneously.

The boys did some high-fiving on the summit of Sgurr nan Gillean, but Jamie was more reserved, knowing fine well (as if this was an Everest Expedition!) that the journey isn’t over until you’re safely back at base. Mostly because descending is far more nerve-racking for her than any climbing ever is, not to mention a pain in the knees. Turns out she was right to be wary, as there was one section of down-climbing that seemed more difficult than any on the ridge (though that may also have been due to sleep deprivation!). Water bottles re-filled at the burn before a painfully long, anti-climactic walk to the Sligachan Campsite. A nearly full moon guided the way and we managed without headtorches, to be greeted by friends – and a basquillion midges – at the campsite.

The day was long, but we knew it would be. The scrambling, on the other hand, was even better than expected. Also surprising were some of the abseils, which appeared unexpectedly on a few descents but certainly sped up Jamie’s otherwise slow approach to downclimbing. Overall, an absolutely brilliant and successful Challenge within the Munro Challenge, which Andy had defined as “The Crux Move” of the year. Well over halfway; over the Crux. Yeah, Baby!!

DCIM100GOPRO

Categories: July (134-185) | Leave a comment

The Saddle, Sgurr na Sgine and South Cluanie Ridge – Creag nam Damh, Sgurr an Lochain, Sgurr an Doire Leathain, Maol Chinn-dearg, Aonach air Chrith, Druim Shionnach, Creag a’Mhaim – (157-165) – 13th July 2013

26 miles, 9000 ft ascent(13 hours)Watch weather deteriorate before you!Having previously supported us through car shuttles and curry provision, today was the first time Lorraine came along to get some Munros done with us. We set up the car shuttle by leaving our car at the Cluanie Inn, then driving back with Lorraine and Darren to the start of the route in Kintail.A path showed us the way until the Forcan Ridge, with the time flying by as we chatted with friends. We parted ways with Lor and Dar at the ridge because we fancied doing the scrambling; they continued along the wall and up to the Saddle from around the back. The scrambling was good fun, though the rock was slightly damp. Timing was impeccable as both pairs reached the summit simultaneously (along with a gentleman who was on an independent walking holiday and was out hiking in the wind/rain/cold carrying his terrier in his backpack!).

We stayed together from the Saddle, retracing some of Lorraine and Darren’s steps to descend to the saddle for a snack attack before ascending Sgurr na Sgine. The weather was beginning to feel even less like summer when we parted ways with our friends, who took a much more civilised approach to hillwalking by ensuring they were back at their car with enough time to enjoy a meal out and a drive home to prepare for work the next morning.

We, on the other hand, continued along the South Cluanie Ridge, taking in every hump, bump, and top along the way. The undulation in this ridge came as a bit of a surprise, and we were particularly surprised by the length of time it took us to get to Creag nam Damh. The ridge has this annoying habit of teasing you with what could be the summit, but isn’t! And with visibility becoming increasingly poor throughout the day we couldn’t see more than about 50m ahead of us to know whether we had reason to celebrate or despair as we approached yet another ascent.

The rocky ridge meant for slower going than we would have preferred, especially since we were basically back in winter wind and rain. But as we approached the last few summits the terrain became grassier and made for slightly faster movement, when we could summon the energy!

There had been some concern about picking a safe and relatively easy way from the final summit. Luckily, we had a route description pulled from the ever-handy and highly recommended website of Steven Fallon (http://www.stevenfallon.co.uk/) that offered a suggestion for descent that proved spot on. In fact, we managed to find a faint trail for the rockiest sections that meant for height loss quickly but safely.

Then came the real test of our mental and physical tenacity. The rocky descent led to grassy, boggy slopes, which seemed endless. For better or worse, we could also see the lights of the Cluanie Lodge far, far in the distance, and we knew fine well that we had to walk about 2 miles past what we could see. The lights of the lodge seemed only marginally closer when we eventually climbed the stile over the deer fence and made contact with the tarmac.

This should have been a relief, but the tarmac beneath sore, tired feet was more painful than expected (especially for Andy in fell runners). Eventually we could see the lights from the Cluanie Inn but, sadly, like the Cluanie Lodge before it, the lights seemed to get further away before they got closer. There was a brief moment during which Jamie actually considered swimming across the loch rather than continue walking the painful circumference (stopped only by the tiny rational part of her brain that was still functioning reminding her that we didn’t even have a towel in the car). We had some funky hip swagger going on by the time we finally reached the car and it took only milliseconds before we had both torn off our footwear. Andy quickly got the stove going to reheat some amazing curry courtesy of Darren (he’d left it behind in a Tupperware for us to find on arrival!) and, after eating, we had enough energy to drive about 50 metres to park the car and pass out.

This was the culmination of an incredibly successful two days of Munro’ing (21 summits!) so we treated ourselves to a rest day the following day, which mostly involved driving home from near the Cluanie Inn (where we’d spent the night in the car) with multiple feeding stops for Andy en route!

Categories: July (134-185) | 3 Comments

North Kintail/Cluanie: Carn Ghluasaid, Sgurr nan Conbhairean, Sail Chaorainn, A’Chralaig, Mullach Fraoch-choire, Ciste Dhubh, Aonach Meadhoin, Sgurr a’Bhealaich Dheirg, Saileag, Sgurr na Ciste Duibhe , Sgurr na Carnach, Sgurr Fhuaran – (145-156) – 12th July 2013

27 miles; 15 hours – Our Biggest Bagging Day yet!! 12 Munros! Included the Five Sisters of Kintail and the Brothers (and probably some nieces, second cousins twice removed, and others!)After quite a late arrival the evening before to the Lundie carpark we would be lying if we said it was easy to get out of the sleeping bags for what we knew was a big day ahead. Luckily, the sun was shining and a light breeze was blowing to make the shift from sleep to movement a bit more bearable. After a few return trips to the car for forgotten items and a hiding of the car key for the thoughtful Lorraine and Darren to find 12 hours later to shuttle the car to the finish for us, we finally got started at 08:30.

The initial ascent of Carn Ghluasaid was pleasant and afforded views down to Loch Cluanie, before the summit brought us views of what a long day we still had to go! The diversion out to Sail Chaorainn was an out and back from the saddle, so a nice opportunity to ditch the backpacks for a little jog. From there we contoured round to preserve as much height as possible before the massive cairn atop A’Chralaig guided the way. Of course, Andy couldn’t resist the urge to climb it, making sure he officially went to the highest spot in the area!

We had another opportunity for some bag-free walking with the trek out to Fraoch-choire. It was fairly warm by that point so a handy chance to dry out from the backpack sweatiness!

By the time we reached Saileag we were pretty low on water and spent some time looking below the ridge for any water source, wishing we’d had the foresight to top up the bottles before we hit the higher, rockier ridge approaching the Five Sisters of Kintail. Unfortunately, we realised that the closest water we would be likely to reach was 100s of metres below where we were. It’s one thing dropping down and climbing back up on a short day, but as we were both keen to be finished to get some rest before another big day tomorrow we decided to press on and ration what little we had left.

The Five Sisters of Kintail on their own are a classic walkers’ route so we of course couldn’t be satisfied at merely doing the three Munros (the three Middle SistersJ). Couldn’t quite figure out why the first one isn’t a Munro in its own right, as it seemed relatively far and with a descent elevation difference between the second sister, but we’ll rely on the Munro list to keep us right!

The descent from the last sister seemed to take its time, but that’s probably because we were both very thirsty and the first usable water source was down at around 350m.

We managed to finish without headtorches at 23:30, but that was mostly down to the light-coloured track reflecting the moonlight. We hit the road and found the car, which Lorraine and Darren had been incredibly kind to move for us earlier in the evening. Must admit, if we’d been faced with a cycle all the way back to the start of today to get the car there would certainly have been tears! As it was, when we didn’t see the car in the first minute of looking we had each other convinced that it had been stolen, the most devastating outcome of which seemed to be not having a place to sleep when we were both shattered! Of course, it was just some extra steps away, waiting to be driven about a mile down the road for some much-needed sleep (preceded by supernoodles for Andy and caramel squares for Jamie; healthy as always:).

Today was a new record for the highest number of Munros we successfully climbed in just one day, so we were motivated to press on even when tired and thirsty. Today also put us solidly over the halfway mark, which was definitely motivating!

DCIM100GOPRO

Categories: July (134-185) | Leave a comment

Ben More & Stob Binnein (143 & 144) – 10 July 2013

(4.25 hours)

Our mate Jamie had a break from training at RAF Leuchars, making the mistake of informing us that he was keen to do some hillwalking to keep fit (or to return to fitness after a fortnight of gluttony on holiday?). So, instead of one weeknight Munro we decided to do two tonight! It was an overcast day while we were at work, but the clouds parted and the sun greeted us as we started our walk at 18:30. We saw a number of folk descending, nearly back to their cars just as we were starting, including a kind man who expressed his concern for us that we might be finishing in the dark . . . Ah, if only the worst of the conditions for this Challenge was a bit of darkness!

Ben More was a straightforward, if not steep, ascent of about 900m in quite a short distance. Always nice to get them over with a direct ascent, we think! Zigzags are completely overrated! Atop Ben More in about 1:45, we tucked behind the shelter of some rocks for an evening snack and for Andy to do some rock hopping.

Andy leaping :)

Andy leaping 🙂

We saw another couple on their way up Ben More from the saddle between Ben More and Stob Binnein; they were up to do the one summit for the evening – always nice to see another duo making the most of a dry evening! The ascent of Stob Binnein was straightforward, with a path showing us the way.

Summit of Stob Binnein

Summit of Stob Binnein

Quick pic at the top before dropping back down to the same saddle, then cutting a line down the grassy slopes to re-join the main track for a few kilometres to the car. Andy thoroughly enjoyed his fell runners, with the grassy slopes as the perfect terrain to make the most of them. Shame he still had to wait for the Jamies to catch up, trying not to be eaten by midges and clegs in the meantime! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Another successful mid-week Munro evening!

Evening Munro pics

Categories: July (134-185) | Leave a comment

Beinn a’Chlachair, Geal Charn, Creag Pitridh (140-142) – 7th July

Receiving Wimbledon updates - thanks Norah & Brian!!

Receiving Wimbledon updates – thanks Norah & Brian!

Five Word Weather: What’s that orb above us?!

(6.5 hours cycle/walk)

In pleasant contrast to yesterday today had a light enough breeze to keep the bugs away but nothing like the brutal arctic chill that graced us in the Alder peaks. In fact, today even brought us views of yesterday’s route, along with a nice change of pace whilst being able to see where we were headed!

The day started out with a cycle up the easy track, followed by a bit more distance on a track that Jamie found not-so-easy but which would benefit us later as we were able to do some pedal-free descending.

We had an enjoyable soak up of views, and consumption of the obligatory sandwiches, atop Beinn a’Chlachair, before motivating to stop the sun bathing and start the moving. Partway between Beinn a’Chlachair and Geal Charn Jamie started to receive the Wimbledon score updates (thanks Norah and Brian!!) – nothing like feeling remote while keeping in touch with the goings on away from the Munros. Visibility was superb throughout the day, which meant choosing an approach to Geal Charn that was the most efficient, and same again for the approach to and descent of Creag Pitridh.

The grassy slopes of Creag Pitridh were at a gentle enough angle for a bit of running that was more fun than painful, still with the hope that the tennis final might have gone to a fourth set that we could catch sight of if we were quick enough! We got back to our bikes, topped up water bottles from the burn, and headed downhill. Andy was down to the main track in a matter of seconds, with Jamie tentatively further behind using more brake than is good for her! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The saving grace to missing Wimbledon was the fact that we had glorious sunshine and a successful day of hillwalking (including reaching the halfway point of the Challenge!), and managed to make it back to the car in time to hear the last few games on the radio thanks to the bike speed at the end of the day. We attempted in vain to zoom to Spean Bridge to catch a glimpse of the finish of the match, but were consoled by dinner in the sunshine outside of the Clachaig in Glencoe. Certainly worse ways to spend an evening, and a positive reminder of some of the pleasantries this Challenge has brought us between rounds of Hard Work! Summit pics:

Categories: July (134-185) | Leave a comment

Beinn Bheoil, Ben Alder, Beinn Eibhinn, Aonach Beag, Geal-charn, Carn Dearg – (134-139) – 6th July

Bitter wind, clouds on tops

(13.5 hours; cycle 30 km; walk 26 km; time slowed for Jamie to practice navigation)

The morning started with a relatively brutal cycle into a headwind, which had us worried for what the rest of the day might have in store! We ditched the bikes by the bridge before the bothy, locking them up behind a little mound on the off chance that the thought of “free miles” with a tailwind prompted anyone to take our bikes for a spin! They cycle in:

The initial walk up to Beinn Bheoil was straightforward and approaching a temperature that could nearly be considered spring-like.

Summit of Beinn Bheoil

Summit of Beinn Bheoil

But, alas, it was not to last and we soon found ourselves huddling up in our wintery attire to ward against the unseasonably cold wind. The cloud grew thicker as the day wore on and by the time we reached Geal-Charn, along with another group of walkers who had come in from Corrour, we were bundled up with compasses out to navigate a safe descent between Geal-Charn and Carn Dearg. Andy had had the foresight to scope out a bit of a descent route when we’d had visibility earlier in the day from below, noticing a band of snow that we could use as a handrail, but in the end we found our way along a stream that brought us safely out of the cloud and toward the ascent of Carn Dearg.

The descent from Carn Dearg to the bothy was steep and grassy and clearly a route not too often travelled as we didn’t see much evidence of previous walkers. That brought us back to our bikes and the reassurance that Jamie didn’t have to do any more downhill walking for at least 12 more hours!

The return journey to the car was a breeze, based on what was stronger than a breeze blowing us downhill. This enjoyable, pedal free descent was interrupted only by Andy’s cartwheel over the handlebars of his bike on the swing bridge after a pedal stopped him in his tracks getting caught in one of the cables. Unfortunately we can’t post the video clip here as Jamie may have sworn once (or twice!) on the recording before rushing to make sure Andy was ok. For the record, Andy’s first attempt at riding over the bridge was a perfectly clean run; it took the camera rolling to prompt the acrobatics!

Being blown back down to the car

Being blown back down to the car – Free Miles!

Back at the car it was a sorting of gear and dinner preparations before sleeping right where we’d started the day, cosy and with the windows firmly rolled up to keep the midges away!

Categories: July (134-185) | Leave a comment

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.