Always one to make the most of the bank holiday weekends, I dragged my best friend to the Trossachs. Not only was this her first time hiking in Scotland, it was also the first time she had been camping in the UK too. I had to rectify that immediately!
Now I’m not suggesting she isn’t a hiker, as she’s done the Inca Trail, but somehow she’d made it through her life and never walked any of the amazing hills in the UK. So we took the opportunity to visit a friend in Scotland to rectify the situation.
I opted for Crieff as our base, deciding there would be enough to keep us all happy if the weather was awful the whole time we were there, which lets face it is always a possibility in Scotland. It was also close enough for our Scottish friend to join us for a few days.
I was careful not to have the whole break revolve around mountains, which I would have done had I gone alone, I resisted my urge to inflict my obsession on others. Out of the choice of great walks in the area bizarrely they both opted to climb Ben Vorlich over the shorter walk of Ben Chonzie.
After a day of relaxing at the Blackford Highland games and sampling some very fine whiskey, we spent the next day bagging the two munros of Ben Vorlich and Stuc a Chroin.
Ben Vorlich is an easy munro to bag as there is a clear path from Ardvorlich to the summit and we were very lucky to have great views once there. However from there it is clear that not many walkers carry on to bag Stuc a Chroin too; probably put off by the wall of rock staring back at you.
Despite the rockface ahead there is a path of sorts around it to the left to avoid any need to scramble, although my fearless friend still didn’t want to look back at the view!
From the summit of Stuc a Chroin most people skirt back below its summit to the north side to end up back on the Ben Vorlich track. Despite the long walk and jelly legs from the ascent, my friends decided they wanted to descend down to Glen Ample to walk through the woodland. This added an entertaining climb through a 10 metre high deer fence (thankfully there was a person sized hole in it!) and another 2-3 miles to the walk, past the deers at a local farm and back along the country lane. Nevertheless it was a good route all round.
Our second day’s walk was a half-hearted affair to bag Ben Chonzie, just because it was there. But I was please to discover that despite the blanket fog we encountered my friend really wanted to go on. I think I might have turned her into a munro bagger after all!
4 Replies to “Whiskey and walking, walking and whiskey.”
Actually, now I’m nearing the end of my Munro-bagging, I’m really going off them. That clag seems to be ever-present this year and I haven’t really managed anything with a view so far. I always saw myself as an ardent bagger before but now I’m not so sure I am any more. Oh well, I’ve only got 12 to do and then I can do more variety of hill-walking – like the equally interesting but smaller (and hopefully less claggy) Scottish hills. I’m also looking forward to getting back to the islands.
Great first post anyway. I haven’t done the front/buttress of Stuc a’ Chroin yet as I did that one on its own via Braeleny/Callander.
Hi Carol, thanks for your comment, I’m quite jealous that you have only 12 left to do especially since i don’t get up to Scotland very often. I know what you mean about the clag though, I do wonder why I climb mountains when I rarely see views, even in the Lakes i usually end up in cloud. Good luck compleating!
Nice. Clear days are preferable, but there’s a unique feeling being up in the clouds, beyond the view of other humanity, that’s very enjoyable.
I definitely agree. I was once supervising a Duke of Edinburgh group and one girl thought it was amazing that she could touch the clouds. I’m not sure I always think that when I’m in the clag!