Tuesday 25 May 2010

An Teallach

I've done it! I've finally got up on An Teallach!
For some the finest mountain in Scotland.
After the painting party had dispersed the climbing party arrived.
Ollie, our youngest son, stayed with us for a further week joined by two of his climbing friends  from Surrey.
On their last day before going home they agreed to a mountain walk as opposed to hanging off a cliff face or sea stack on a piece of rope
something easy....
 Mmmm....I see.
It's still a long way off, it looks small.
"You don't climb up Mum, Just walk up, once at the top the rest is easy"
Thanks Ollie.
I noticed young men walk much faster than old ladies!
 I nearly gave up, even a cheese and pickle sandwich didn't 
revive my spirits or achy legs. It was cold, wet and misty. Looking upwards only showed more boulders to walk climb over and a thick mist.
People ask 'why do people climb mountains?'
The cloud cleared, and  the answer  spread out before me. The energy returned. The stunning views did more to relieve tired achy muscles than a bag of cashew nuts and a banana ever could. Looking out over real wilderness, no roads, houses, cars neat hedges but incredible order and beauty nevertheless.
An Teallach has many ascents and descents. A skyline of knife-edged crests and rocky pinnacles. I looked over to the next ridge where the three fittest youngest members of the team had got to and determined to get there too
Oooops - but it's a long way down. The guide book says you can run down there. A fine line I think between running and rolling.
 We looked back to where we'd come from
and forward where we still had to go. It's amazing. I so want to continue. There is a path round the pinnacles that avoids scrambling. And I know I won't be tempted to sit on Lord Berkeley's seat!  But it's growing late and still a long way to the finish.
Richard, one of the climbers stays with us. We agree we haven't given ourselves enough time to complete the circuit. At this point we're not even a quarter way round
It is so very beautiful. Mountains are amazing. I feel privileged that I'm able to climb some of them, albeit very slowly!
The boys go on. We decide to turn back  and retrace our steps back down the mountain
Coming down I meet this perfect little frog which stayed very still and waited patiently while I twiddled and fiddled with the camera. By way of a thank you I told him I'd put him on my blog - he  looked a bit worried.
I'm determined to come back and complete this expedition. Next time we shall pack our bags the night before and get off first thing in the morning.  It has been a truly brilliant and worthwhile day.


rachel said...

I'm astonished and deeply impressed.... Looking at those lovely pictures, all I could think of was Mountain Rescue.... falling to death.... house with stairs is enough... You are amazing.

Lucille said...

I'm impressed. That does not look like a walk in the park. And it is just a mite more challenging than the South Downs where I nearly lost my nerve at the weekend. What a wuss I am!

annie hoff said...

Hello Rachel, well I did think at one point falling off would be a bit of a waste - especially as I had a new box of wine in the fridge!

annie hoff said...

Hi Lucille, the South Downs are lovely for walks - you weren't scaling the cliffs at Beachy Head or something were you?!

Lucille said...

No - it was just that it was getting dark and the walk was a lot longer than expected with very poor directions. I've never really recovered my nerve after one seriously ill-judged expedition in the Lake District when I was a gal.

Cristina Berardi said...

...to me, leaving in the South of Europre, down on the Mediterranean Sea, you are the Fairy of the High Mountains in the North of the World...
I love to read and see your Diary
Greetings from Cristina

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