December (Christmas) Day Trip to Strathyre

The long route group  The short route group  One of the many bridges  Along the route  Santa arrives  Awaiting presents  Awaiting presents

(... where a Kingshouse becomes a little Mhor ...)

The weather during most of November had been pretty good .. not to mention balmy on several days! Would it hold until 4th December? Would Storm Angus brewing in the western Atlantic come sweeping in?? Fortunately .. yes, and no. Sunday dawned bright and cold, with the prospect of a good dry day ahead ...

After 3 last-minute call-offs, 14 walkers boarded the bus at Cathcart at 8am to head for the Mhor84 Motel beyond Strathyre (formerly the Kingshouse Hotel) by way of the M74, M73, M80 and A84.  But not before a stop between junctions 2A and 3 to pick up another 7 .. and a further 4 travelled by car because Buster the dog wasn't allowed on the bus .. for the main journey anyway!

I phoned in the order for breakfast rolls and drinks before we reached Callander, and estimated our time of arrival at the Mhor84 at 9.30am. The service was very efficient in manager Lindsay's capable hands, and we were soon back on the bus heading for the start points of the walking routes. Because the weather was so good, most opted for the longer route from Lix Toll, with only 8 on the shorter route from Glenogle Cottages. Buster sneaked onto the bus for this short hurl to the Cottages .....

View the route map?

Extra spice .. as if it was needed! .. was added to the day by the option of taking up the Mobile Phone Challenge. A keen eye and an element of creativity was all that was needed .. and as Iris had decided to remain at the Mhor84 for the day, her appointment as independent judge was confirmed ...

And so the 'long' group was dropped off first at the Lix Toll, and the 'short' group at the Cottages, then the bus returned to Callander for the day with a return to the Mhor84 for 3pm. The walking was really nice and pleasant and by 3pm we were all back at the Mhor84 for mince pies and mulled wine .. best mince pies ever!

Santa then arrived and dispensed his annual bonhomie and presents .. and it turned out that the co-owner of the Motel (and a range of Mhor businesses in the area) and I had worked together some years ago at the Tibetan Buddhist centre in Glasgow!

The Challenge winner, Mark Setford, was presented with his prize .. thanks to judge Iris for all her work .. and Bob's raffle was drawn, making £92 for Mountain Rescue.  Then it was back on the bus for the leisurely return journey .. and another enjoyable Christmas Outing was over.

AMcG

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