Monday, 10 November 2008

Permanently Running Late

I know I could just change the dates on these posts when I'm not attending to them on the day in question, but that seems like cheating, a wee bit.

The forecast last Friday wasn't awful appealing, so I was on my own so far as a walk was concerned. I couldn't be bothered with a massive drive, so the original idea to have a go at Chno Dearg and whatever the one next to it's called was sidelined. I elected to head for Kinlochleven so that I could maybe pick off Binnein Beag. I recalled from previous visits that it seemed sheep-free, and it maybe wasn't all that strenuous - a long walk rather than a steep one.

I should have got up earlier. I can clearly remember when I started hillwalking, and was invariably alone, that I'd maybe be driving through Callander or somewhere just as it was getting light! That would have to mean a 5am rise at this time of year, so I must have been hellish keen in the olden days. As it was, I got up about 6:15, messed around, looked out the window at the rain etc, etc, and eventually arrived at the Mamore Lodge Hotel at about half ten. Walking by quarter to eleven. That should just have been enough time...if I hadny wasted quite a bit of it doing unanticipated navigation practice. Entirely my own fault. I fell into the classic hillwalker's trap of thinking that because I'd been along that track before, and had an idea in my head of where everything was, I didn't need to pay too much attention to the map even although there was a thick fog by the time I decided I could strike across the boggy heathery stuff towards Loch Eilde Mor. A brief pause and then a reassessment had me back on the right road, but I then fell into the second classic hillwalkers trap of thinking "I'm looking for a path on the left. There is a path on the left. Therefore that is the path I'm looking for."

Actually, that may be a syllogism, rather than a trap. If it is, then although I may not be able to navigate, at least I'm still a pretentious pain in the erse.

Anyhoo, this was all eating into the rather neat time window that I had allowed myself, and as the weather was deteriorating rapidly I felt a dignified retreat was in order. Yet again.

The good news is that Jorja thoroughly enjoyed herself. It's a cracking walk for the dugs. I'll head back up, as soon as a decent weather forecast reveals itself.

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