Although we’re halfway through the year, it’s been a while since I attempted a ‘proper’ climb. You know the ones; hills that push your boundaries and leave you absolutely done-in at the end of the day? Walks where you come home to a mountain of washing but actually, you’re too knackered to care? Well it’s been a good few months…
I recently joined a walking group that my friend Claire was in. They have been walking together for nearly a year now and I’ve managed to tag along on a couple of walks and climbs recently. The most recent walk I joined was in Glen Fyne and I hinted heavily to Vince, “if you do the Buachaille again, can I tag along?” (more of a heavy request than a hint I admit…), “Of course” he says and I presume that it won’t happen soon. Fast forward a few days when a message comes through on the group chat “anyone fancy doing the Buachaille Etive Mor on 3rd June”. I jump at the chance and the butterflies start… I read the Walking Highlands description: hmmm, I do like a bit of a scramble and I’m keen to bag this as munro number 18…
Black Rock Cottage with Buachaille Etive Mor behind
Stag at Kings House Hotel, backdrop of Buachaille Etive Mor
Photography by Kate Lyon / Rambling Scotland
I meet my climbing companions, Vince and Joe on an overcast Sunday morning. We jump in Harvey RV, stopping at The Green Welly for supplies and loo breaks, looking out for blue patches in the sky which seem to making an appearance. Parking at Altnafeadh is already busy so we park slightly further up the A82. The Buachaille stands tall and menacing and the butterflies haven’t calmed down. Excitement gets the better of me and I shriek a little bit as we pull up. My companions offer a smile and I realise I don’t know either well enough to show my true psycho-on-the-hill colours yet… I best calm down.
As we had parked a bit of a distance from the main track, a bit of cross country was required taking us across the river and through the heather, we arrive on the track with my legs well and truly warmed up.