The Road goes ever on and on; Down from the door where it began;
Now far ahead the Road has gone; And I must follow, if I can;
Pursuing it with eager feet; Until it joins some larger way;
Where many paths and errands met; And whither then? I cannot say.

[JRR Tolkien, Lord of the Rings]

Monday, 14 May 2012

TGOC Day 3 - SE Short of Loch Beinn a'Mheadhoin to

Sunday 13 May (0745-1300)
Distance: 10 miles
Ascent: a gentle 1200' ish
Weather: continuous light rain
Number of slugs wot I accidentally cooked (but didn't eat): 1

The wind whistled overhead last night, mainly missing us in our sheltered position, but it was certainly a bit damp. No hammering rain, just a continuous gentle pitter patter.

That gentle rain continued as we made our way through the natural forest that makes up the Nature Reserve in which we had camped, and then over to Tomich.

Even when we popped out of the forest we weren't bothered by the wind. It was behind us, and not of any notable strength at our low elevation.

"Bit windy out there" said the chap in the Tomich Hotel when we nipped in for a pot of tea. We wondered whether it really was and we'd just not noticed, or whether it was just the perception from indoors.

It was only 10am when we arrived at the hotel, and we only had just over 4 miles to go, so we weren't in any rush as we supped our tea (and I may have been cheeky enough to nip off to the ladies to do some washing of smalls, but I'm not going to confess to that). An hour passed before we left.

It was still raining as we left and as we gained height, the wind did become noticeable, but it wasn't long before we were following an old boggy, grassy track through another chunk of forest, giving us shelter once again.

By the time we dropped down to the River Enrick the weather was really getting a bit wild and a decision had to be made. Per our route sheet, alongside the river was where we were to spend the night. Having walked further than planned yesterday, we had thought to extend today to cover a couple of miles of tomorrow, but now we had to wonder whether sticking with Plan A was the better option.

To assist our decision, we detoured slightly to investigate a small patch of woodland, just off our course. The map showed a building in that woodland, and of the four possibilities as to what that building could be, one was a bothy. There was no doubt that if our luck was in, and it was a bothy, then we would call it a day at just 1pm.

Our luck was in. When we finally got the front door open we found a room with a sofa, an armchair, a stack of wood, a bag of coal and some firelighters. Even more lucky (incredible coincidence you may say, if you recall that in my last post I said that I was a bag of pasta missing), the only food that has been left here is a vacuum packed single-serving packet of spaghetti!
Since we arrived the weather has become really wild out. Hope the worst blows through by morning!

(Post blog note: the fire didn't last long. Every time the wind blew, the room filled with smoke. With the wind constantly blowing, we soon smelt like kippers, and let the fire die)
(Post-post blog note: as the afternoon progressed the weather got worse and worse. The rain was horizontal and the roof was rattling away. At about 1730, we were joined by Sue and Chris, who we first met in 2009. They'd had a bit of a rough time battling the weather from Tomich. At about 1900 the wind died so suddenly it was as if someone had flicked a switch. Without the wind, the second attempt at a fire was a success. At 2015 the sun briefly came out. We rushed outside - and found that the river had burst its bank just upstream and that the track on which we had walked in was now underwater. Quite an impressive change in what had been such a gentle benign river just a few hours before.)

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1 comment:

  1. Mick you look really at home there. Can’t quite see but are those slippers you have on with that smoking jacket. Ha