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Wednesday, 27 September 2017

390: The Lairig Ghru

Normally I write a blog then copy it to Facebook. This time, for a change, I'm doing it the other way around. I have a couple of entries on FB concerning Sunday's crossing of the Lairig Ghru but FB entries are so transient and difficult to find later. I hope one day to export and publish my blog to show my experiences over the past few years that I have been writing. A potted history of the latter years of my life. (I hope there are still many years left, but who knows!)
Here then is an extract from my FB posts:
"It's over. 12.5 hours in the mountains, the first hour of which stayed dry and the last hour was done in darkness. The real killer was scrabbling over the boulders in the middle third of the walk: they were slippery and wobbly and some had quite sharp points. No fun at all. With the almost non-stop rain the path, such as it was, had filled up with puddles. In the beginning we tried to walk around the puddles but by the end we were just sloshing through them. Today, every muscle in my body is stiff and tired. Very many thanks to those of my FB friends who sponsored us. If you had been waiting until we finished the walk then now would be a good time, the site is still open for donations. " (until 24 Oct 17)
We collected over £1,500 for our two nominated charities - Cancer Research UK and Combat Stress.
The walk was quite an achievement, especially for us at our age (it was Alisdair's 70th birthday and I am 67). We started the day with a Big Boy's Breakfast in the Moorfield House hotel in Braemar and drove from there to the Linn of Dee where we started our little walk at 08.40. Between then and 21.10, when we finished it, all we had to eat and drink was ½ a banana each and ½ a cup of tea each. The main reason for this was the rain. I was wearing my backpack under my waterproof raincoat and it never seemed the right time to stop in the rain and take it off. There was no shelter on the route, apart from a bothy which was situated less than halfway in and at that point we were keen to keep going. We came very close to deciding to spend the night on the mountain as we had bivvy bags and survival blankets etc but finishing the walk was the preferred option and that's what we did.  

What else could I finish with but "the hills are alive" 

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