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Report on Meall nan Tarmachan
Saturday 5th Februaury 2005

We all set of for a nice day's ridge walk five turned up despite the iffy weather report.  Some called off due to the intake of alcohol like Stevie B who can't handle a hill with a hang-over.  But the intrepid five were Allen Morrison, Steven Connolly myself and two new potential members Angie Hall and Ian Williams and also joined by his two dogs Molly and Hattie.

Thinking I had warp drive in the car I expected to drive there in about 1 1/2 hrs so was running late not a good impression for organising a walk but made it there eventually.

To my surprise the hill was covered in snow another surprise so we set off hoping for the best. The track was good, easy navigation, and looked great covered in snow - the dogs were having a ball but Allen M was looking for his spare pair of lungs as we approached the first top.  At this point we were the only people on the hill but, as we stopped for a cuppa, some one must have dropped a bus off at the bottom of the hill.  

We approached the gully to the summit covered in deep snow but had to wait in the queue for the climb onto the summit - there were about 2 dozen people climbing the gully.  I have never seen so many people waiting to go up a hill.

Once on the summit of what seemed like Sauchiehall Street the weather closed in.  We set of for the ridge but soon realised the weather was not going to improve so decided to pitch our shelter and have a bit of lunch all inside the shelter - which I would recommend to anyone for winter conditions. All snug, including the dogs watching every bite of our rolls, waiting for someone to slip up and put down our roll before scoffing it.  But everyone gave them a bite to eat and Ian brought out their fold away bowl (very ingenuous) - very well behaved dogs and helped keep us nice and warm.

We eventually set off back down the hill some not wanting to leave the comfort of the shelter - almost had to drag Angie and Steve out the shelter.  Once outside we realised what a good decision it was to abandon the attempt to do the ridge as visibility was now down to about 10 feet with a biting wind.  So it was last one down the hill buys the drinks - Allen somehow managed to find his second wind and was off like a hare.

Back in the pub, at the falls of Dochart, we all enjoyed a wee drink in front of a big roaring coal fire.  Some of us enjoyed the drink a wee bit too much or was is it just the excitement of the day that got to Angie.  Think it had something to do with the glayva putting a we glow on her face and not the fire.  Another fine day out for Air na Creggan in testing conditions.

Michael Nicol

Photos: Michael Nicol

Affiliated to:

Mountaineering Council of Scotland
Scottish Youth Hostels Association

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