I had a great bike ride into the wonderful, wild and lonely Glen Mallie-South of Loch Arkaig today. Cycle along the Caledonian Canal to Acnaharry and along Glen Mallie. Lovely pathless walk to the summit of 727m. Mullach Coire nan Geur-oirean, try pronouncing that one! Obviously a less frequented hill as not even a summit cairn. Lots of shielings in the glen below, a well inhabited area in the past. It was a overcast day but the weather fitted the occasion with lots of stags roaring in the glen below. Just got back to the bike and the rain came on. Weather looks much cooler and forecasting snow on the higher tops next week, winter not far away!
Monday, 26 October 2009
A lovely, brief weather window today in between low pressure systems. It was a glorious sunny morning, complete contrast to yesterdays very wet day. I cycled up from The Fort along the West Highland Way and went up the fine South ridge of Stob Ban in the Mamores and continued along to Mullach nan Coirean. The cloud thickened in the afternoon but stayed above the tops. It was quite warm and summer like but with the glorious colours at the moment it looks very much Autumn, particularly as it's now getting dark at 5pm. Wet again Tuesday then another dry day is forecast for Wednesday.
Saturday, 24 October 2009
Despite the dire weather forecast today, Sarah, Joanne and I didn't have to battle too much on The Ben. Wind speeds only topped about 50mph and we got a light soaking of rain, indeed we even had an hour of sunshine in the afternoon. It was the quietest Saturday on Ben Nevis for quite a while, surely folk aren't out Xmas shopping already?
Thursday, 22 October 2009
Another beautiful day today, Autumn colours on the hills are very fine at the moment. Whilst most of the UK had rain and showers the West coast was bathed in warm sunshine all day. The drive down from Arisaig to Strontian is gorgous and I was up on Sgurr nan Cnamh, an unfrequented hill in Ardgour. The usual rugged terrain of bog and undulating terrain. Rewarded with a golden eagle at the summit.
Wednesday, 21 October 2009
Another very nice day at Arasaig. It was sunny and warm and just a few kilometres from our luxury cottage at Arasaig House are some fine beeches with lots of bouldering oppurtunities. Great sunset too. Our accomodation this week is superb for groups wanting some luxury accomodation at reasonable prices: http://www.arisaighouse-cottages.co.uk/
Tuesday, 20 October 2009
Sunday, 18 October 2009
Just back from a wonderful weeks trekking out in The Alps with Fred and Paul. We were out in a not so well known and little visited area in the Southern part of The Alps, Monte Viso and Chamberyon areas. These areas receive over 300 sunny days per year and we certainly got that with a full week of blue skies and warm sun. A lot of the area is made up of schist and limestone rock making for striking looking mountains with pinnacles and steep peaks. There are only a few very small glaciers so getting to the tops of most of the 3000m peaks aren't so technical and requiring no glacial crossings. Lots of chamois seen, Golden Eagle but the marmotts seemed to have gone underground and asleep for the winter. We were using the mountain refuges winter rooms which were very comfortable. Accommodation was thin on the ground in lower areas, the villages and even towns seemed to have closed down for the season, such a shame as this time of year is superb for getting out in these mountains.
Back home and we are now taking bookings for winter skills courses, already we have bookings in December and January.
Thursday, 8 October 2009
Tuesday, 6 October 2009
Monday, 5 October 2009
A quieter and more pleasant day on Ben Nevis today. The promised day of sun never materialised though, at least it was dry but with cloud shrouding the summit. Jo and her
four legged friend, Daisy had a good stretch in the snow today. Only a light dusting above 1200m but below freezing on the summit. Unbelievable to see at least two people with shorts, trainers, no waterproofs and no rucksacks! We just got back down to the Lochan when the helicopter was buzzing around the mountain, mmmm. Looking forward to winter, we already have two bookings for winter skills and a winter ascent of Ben Nevis in January.
Sunday, 4 October 2009
Saturday, 3 October 2009
The first 'taste' of winter on Ben Nevis today with 60mph winds on the tops, hail, sleet and snow above 1000m. A real shock to the system for some folk and of course there were the usual 'light wieght approach' folk trudging up the hill in all kinds of attire. Of particular note was a guy with trainers and a pair of Lidl shopping bags as waterproof membranes! Quite a few folk turning back today.