Stories and pics from
February Day Trip to the Balquhidder area
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The weather was not looking too good as we made our way to the coffee shop at the Trossachs Woollen Mill in Kilmahog. Debbie and Susan were going to walk along the Rob Roy Way to the Mhor84 hotel and the rest of the group .. Bob, Steven, Heidi, Mark, James, Alasdair, Cat, Allan and I .. were going to head to the end of the Balquhidder road at Inverlochlarig before making a final route decision.
Debbie and Susan drove to the Ben Ledi car park, only to find that there was no room to squeeze another car in. Instead, they drove back to the car park beyond the Lade Inn and started their walk from there. At Strathyre, they stayed on the new cycle track that follows the dismantled railway track just west of the A84, instead of the Rob Roy Way which runs through the forest, higher up to the east.
The Inverlochlarig car park has a handy shelter where we could get our boots and waterproofs on. It had started to snow and the conditions were not the best to tackle Beinn Tulaichean, our intended hill for the day. We opted to climb the nearby Graham of Stob Breac instead. The club last visited this hill for the New Year walk in January 2008. It continued to snow as we made our way south-west across the river and up to the U-shaped forestry track that wraps around Stob Breac. We followed this track east and then south to NN454161. From here we followed the clearing around the stream uphill and then on to the summit across the open hill. We agreed that the conditions were a bit better than when we visited in 2008, but there was no view and we descended back to the shelter of the trees for a late lunch break. When we reached the north side of the hill again, the weather had started to clear and we got some views across the glen to the slopes of Beinn Tulaichean and the south ridges of Stob Binnien.
By the time we were stowing our gear, Debbie and Susan had already finished their 16km walk and were waiting patiently at the Mhor84. We all met up at the hotel for refreshments at the same big table that we used during the last Christmas outing. Although we were hoping for better weather, it was a still a good day out in the hills!
February Weekend to the Lake District
Allan and I drove down and climbed the Tongue, Bowscale Fell and Bannerdale Crags in good weather. Mark & Miriam arrived slightly later, but had time to climb Wren Crag, High Rigg and Naddle Fell. We arrived at the King’s Head at the same time as Steven and Hilary and got booked in before joining Mark and Miriam in the bar.
One problem was that there was no signal for anyone’s mobile, so we couldn’t get in touch with the other group staying in Portinscale (see below .. Ed). Debbie and Susan were the last to arrive, and after they had settled in we all met up in the bar for a very good evening meal.
At breakfast we looked out at the forecast heavy rain and high winds. Not very inviting, but 6 of us decided to drive a short way up the road and do a walk beside Thirlmere. Allan, Steven and I detoured to take in Great How. When we got back, after getting out of sodden waterproofs, Allan and I decided to watch the rugby in our room. Others headed for a look at Keswick.
Mark climbed Raven Crag, Castle Crag and The Benn, and on the walk back took in Great How. After the walk, he and Miriam headed for Grasmere but had to turn round due to a flooded road.
After the rugby, we headed to the bar to find that Ian, Iris, Chris and Kate had driven over for a drink with us. After they left to return to their hotel, we all assembled for our evening meal in the bar.
The weather hadn’t improved much .. the wind had died down a bit .. so apart from Allan and I, all were heading back to Glasgow after breakfast.
We decided to climb the 3 hills that Mark had done the previous day. In better weather, the views from Raven Crag would be good, but in the rain and wind we could barely see across Thirlmere.
Once back at the car we got changed and then headed home.
The weather wasn’t kind to us, but we did get out on all 3 days.
On a very wet Saturday Chris and I walked from Portinscale along the old railway route from Keswick to Threlkeld branching off to pick up the minor road to the Castlerigg Stone Circle. The turn off from the railway route was slightly earlier than anticipated due the absence of a bridge which had been washed away in floods several years ago. We then returned via Keswick to Portinscale and met up with the ladies who had enjoyed a relaxing and much drier day.
On an equally wet Sunday Chris and I set off for walk round Derwent Water. This went fine until we found the path flooded at the southern end of the lake which necessitated a 3 mile detour via Grange. We pressed on to Keswick, alternating between road and paths, where we met up with Kate and Iris in the Dog and Gun pub for a late lunch.
We all headed for home on the Monday, stopping off in Keswick for Chris to purchase some new waterproofs. The last two days had shown that his original kit was somewhat past its best.
Overall it was an excellent if damp weekend. It would have been better if we had got ourselves organised earlier before the Kings Head ran out of rooms, but given the weather it was handy being close to Keswick.
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