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A Walking Holiday Part 1 (A New Hope)

Last month, I was able to take a few days off and, for the first time in ages, have a proper period in the hills. I had a variety of companions, including no-one (I had the biggest argument with him) and some very good weather (providing I stayed East.....had hoped to get to Fort William, but the forecast was always grim west of the A9. Maybe after it's dualled, the weather will improve). Decided to use the bike wherever possible, and had some big days. Probably averaged 30km on 3 of them.

I wanted to start off in the Monahliath. Hadn't been there for years, and was concerned that I might not get back before the wind turbines march in.The light was mixed, but you still get that extraordinary sense of space. real MAMBA country, and a true centre of Scotland. You could see Glencoe down Loch Ericht and Loch Trieg, the Cairngorms, Ben Wyvis and a lot of the Western Highlands from Ben Nevis area all the way up through Shiel, Affric, Cannich, though I have to admit in that direction, it was a bit fuzzy both visually and geographically.

I wanted to start off in the Monahliath. Hadn't been there for years, and was concerned that I might not get back before the wind turbines march in.The light was mixed, but you still get that extraordinary sense of space. real MAMBA country, and a true centre of Scotland. You could see Glencoe down Loch Ericht and Loch Trieg, the Cairngorms, Ben Wyvis and a lot of the Western Highlands from Ben Nevis area all the way up through Shiel, Affric, Cannich, though I have to admit in that direction, it was a bit fuzzy both visually and geographically.

It must be a nightmare to navigate in a white out on this territory. Really featureless, but the fence posts help.   The next day was a cracker on Beinn Bhuird. The bike came into its own; absolutely eats up the miles up to the path at the top of Glen Quoich (and faster on the way back). The new path up Beinn Bhuird is an absolute joy; great angle, well drained, fairly direct and such an improvement on that horrendous bulldozed track which has almost disappeared. Well done NTS.

It must be a nightmare to navigate in a white out on this territory. Really featureless, but the fence posts help.

 

The next day was a cracker on Beinn Bhuird. The bike came into its own; absolutely eats up the miles up to the path at the top of Glen Quoich (and faster on the way back). The new path up Beinn Bhuird is an absolute joy; great angle, well drained, fairly direct and such an improvement on that horrendous bulldozed track which has almost disappeared. Well done NTS.

It's just such a vast area the summit of Beinn Bhuird, as is the neighbouring Ben Avon. The corries scalloped out of it are really beautiful, though I didn't have time to go over to the ones on the north side. The light had been a bit mixed up until the summit, and then it just became perfect, and you had that enormous and wonderful sense of space and big sky.

It's just such a vast area the summit of Beinn Bhuird, as is the neighbouring Ben Avon. The corries scalloped out of it are really beautiful, though I didn't have time to go over to the ones on the north side. The light had been a bit mixed up until the summit, and then it just became perfect, and you had that enormous and wonderful sense of space and big sky.

You really feel very small in this landscape. It's an absolute joy to walk in.

You really feel very small in this landscape. It's an absolute joy to walk in.