Sue and Martin above Zermatt - 2018

Sue and Martin above Zermatt - 2018
Showing posts with label Pitlochry 2016. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pitlochry 2016. Show all posts

Sunday, 2 October 2016

Sunday 2 October 2016 - Geal-Charn and A' Mharconaich

Fog over Pitlochry. But it soon cleared. After bidding our farewells to numerous TGO Challengers, and thanking them for taking a fair quantity of incorrectly printed Pyrenees books off my hands, Sue and I pottered off to Balsporran Cottages, near Dalwhinnie, to climb two easy hills that Sue may not have been up before.

It was a perfect day for walking. Clear blue skies, crystal clear visibility, warm sunshine with a cool breeze to blow away any sweat. Ptarmigan and red grouse had grouped themselves into flocks. No deer were in evidence. The last flowers of the heather had a frosty sheen to them as we climbed, passing a couple on the first summit, and meeting an early morning runner - the only people encountered on our three and three quarter hour excursion that clocked up 12 kilometres and about 750 metres of ascent.

There were fine views across Loch Ericht to the Ben Alder range, and further afield to summits too numerous to mention.

We would have liked to have extended the walk (and the trip), but we had no food with us and Sue has to be at work tomorrow, so it was back to the car and down to the House of Bruar for a bite to eat, before an easy drive back to Timperley for around 8pm.

Today's pictures should be fairly self explanatory, but an annotated slideshow should follow if I can work out how to compose one - Google seem to have made some changes and my time honoured method of producing a slideshow no longer works. Ho hum (and thanks to Mike Parsons for his suggestions).

I'll also do some track maps.

Saturday, 1 October 2016

Saturday 1 October 2016 - Ben Vrackie

A lovely circuit, starting with nearly twenty Challengers, leaving all but six of us beyond the summit, before heading down to Meall an Daimh, where Gordon and Jim took a short cut and Sue, Ann and Alvar kept me company on a longish (25 km) circuit back to Pitlochry via the Killiecrankie battlefield. 

We started through rising mist, soon emerging into bright sunshine and views stunning in their clarity.

Windless. We spent nearly an hour on Vrackie's summit whilst the backmarkers ambled slowly up. Great views across to yesterday's route on Beinn A'Ghlo. 

Down to Glen Girnaig via a scenic lunch stop in the hearing of some shooters who later passed us in their 4 X 4s.

A strange, overgrown with nettles and thistles, enclosed path four feet wide took us the 2-3 km from the battlefield to Killiecrankie, where it started to rain once we had admired the view up the river.

Then an easy but tiring 7 km riverside walk back to base. Past the Enchanted Forest, and we were all flagging towards the end. 8.5 hours, with about 1000 metres ascent.

(Yesterday was about 23 km, 1300 metres ascent, in about 7.5 hours.)

A grand day out.

All today's pictures were taken on the way to or at Ben Vrackie's summit. Others will follow by way of a slideshow.

Friday 30 September 2016 - Beinn A' Ghlo

A short drive from our base in Scotland's Hotel, Pitlochry, saw us disembarking beside Loch Moraig for this classic mountain circuit that includes three Munro summits.

The weather forecast was encouraging and we made it to the first summit, Carn Liath, in our fleeces. The breeze was light but cool, and it was good to have the roaring of stags instead of the whoosh of yesterday's turbines. 

A couple who set off just behind us nearly caught us up here. We thought they had succeeded when two people overhauled us during a long lunch stop at Bealach an Fhiodha, but they were two gents from Glasgow. The first couple were finally encountered as we retraced our steps from the 'there and back' summit of our third Munro, Carn nan Gabhar. A particularly tedious exercise conducted over a slippery boulder field. Anyway, we finally got to chat to this couple, who had decamped from Braemar to Pitlochry's excellent backpackers hostel where they are fortunate to have a room in a turret. Somehow, between us, Sue and I managed to bring my forthcoming marathon into the conversation. We left a card on their windscreen, so it will be interesting to see whether the combined effects of a random encounter and social media trigger a donation. Regardless of that, it was nice to meet you if you are reading this, and we trust you got down more easily than the other two gents. They passed us on the south west slopes of Airgiod Bheinn (a Munro 'Top') as we took a break to empty our flask, then they proceeded to leave the steep path, finishing up over a kilometre behind us.

During the day we saw lots of deer and grouse, presumably trying to avoid stalkers and shooters, and many more stags were heard roaring in the glens. But we didn't have the pleasure of observing a family of stoats - that was yesterday - I forgot to mention it.

Once down at the base of the hill, and well away from the persistent shower that seemed to have accompanied us most of the way from Carn nan Gabhar, I could take off my waterproofs and enjoy the 7 km walk back to the car along a newish path that presumably replaces a rather squelchy one.

The evening was spent with TGO Challengers, Ali, Marian, Mike and many more, on account of it being a reunion weekend.

Today's pictures:
Looking back to Loch Moraig
The view through mist to Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain from the descent of Carn Liath 
Lunchtime at Bealach an Fhiodha 
The view north from Carn nan Gabhar 
Walking out along the new path

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Common Hill

The commonest things on this hill were wind turbines. Lots of them. Thus it was an easy stroll up and down the Hagshaw Hill Wind Farm's service road from an outdoor centre near Douglas.

The trig point at which the above 'selfie' (I've been taking lessons from Gayle) was taken didn't look like the highest point, so we roamed around the summit in a squall that eased as soon as we moved on.

8 km with about 250 metres ascent took us an hour and a half. We had a flask and sandwiches. It was more refreshing than stopping at a service station on our 300 mile journey.