A B R E A T H O F F R E S H A I R
Pushing my kayak from the shores of Loch Lomond [the largest inland body of water in the UK], I paddled across to reach the Corbett on the other side. Accessing by the water I cut a long walk in with a gentle and relaxing morning kayak. The autumn colours were now capped in white on the slopes above. The snow had arrived.
Tweeting a meeting point at the Lix Toll garage I was already expecting at least one person to join me for the summits of Creac Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-seallaidh. Earlier in the week I had been contacted by Ewan who runs the superb blog WildAboutScotland which I have long been following. As we met in the carpark two others joined, Bruce and Anne who run another blog MunroArt and then a fourth Ruaridh who was a first year Outdoor Ed student at Stirling.
As a party of five we wandered into the cloud from Lochearnhead with hopes of rising above it on the summits.
There are few days that I would describe as ‘perfect’ but this was one of them. Before long we were above the mist and following someone else’s trace through deep snow in the crisp frosty air. We had climbed above a sea of silvery cloud to perch on an island in the sky.
There was no rush, the sun brought heat to the air whilst soft powder fluffed around our every step. It was beautifully still and calm on the summits as if the whole world had paused. By mid-day I must have taken almost as many photos as I had steps.
Ruaridh who was wonderfully colour co-ordinated in his all green overalls ran eagerly ahead giving fresh footsteps to follow with ease. Bruce and Anne filmed videos and Ewan took photographs at my side- it was a real pleasure to hike in each others company, especially on such a fine day.
By the time we had reached our second summit the sun had dropped lower in the sky. Now the clouds held a warm golden hue and the mountains cast long shadows across the glittering snow. We would reach the top just before sunset and lingered to enjoy it.
Descending with the final rays we dropped into shadow. Wading through the soft drifts we returned to an icy trail and wandered back down, we reached the cars without needing the head torches….just.
Check out Bruce’s incredible video.
And read more about it on Ewan’s fantastic blog: HERE.
Overnight on the shores of Loch Tay the mist sank and froze to everything it touched. I emerged from a van so cold that my milk had frozen solid in the carton to find a world covered in hoar frost.
Snowshoes on I set out alone to discover the next few wintery walks. This week was hard to decide which was truly the Coldest Corbett.