F and I spent New Year 2014/15 in Applecross in the western highlands of Scotland. It is a beautiful, wild landscape and we had chosen it because I wanted to get away from the usual New Year’s “celebrations”, which for me are a festival too far at a time when Christmas ought to dominate. Below is the view from near the cottage that we rented, overlooking Loch Torridon.
I’m tempted to draw to the viewer’s attention Beinn Alligin in the distance, one of the three Munros1 in the immediate Torridon area. However I am refraining from doing that because (a) it isn’t actually anywhere to be seen (b) I mention it because it seems to me that every time we saw a top in the distance F asserted it was Beinn Alligin and (c) we never did actually see it until we were on our way home, when we drove for some considerable time along the flank of the mountain, which really whetted my appetite for actually climbing it one day. However I am resisting the temptation to do those things (oops!) because my teasing of F for this obsession with Beinn Alligin did become slightly tiresome (to her, not me: I took the view that this one could run) and, to her credit, she has actually climbed the thing, which is no mean feat.
For those who are wondering; climbing Munros in Scotland should not be taken lightly. Even in summer, the difference in weather conditions between the bottom and the top can be astonishing. In winter the dangers are magnified, and, given the restricted hours of daylight available to us when we were in Applecross the logistics of getting up and down again safely and enjoyably proved too taxing. But some day. Along with the winter ascent of Beinn Nevis by the Carn Mor Dearg arêt that’s on my bucket list for sure. The CMD arêt will only be done if F is up for it, since I wouldn’t attempt it on my own, but she has made half a commitment to doing it someday2.
1. The other two are Liathach and Beinn Eighe↩
2. I’m vaguely thinking of doing it on my 65th birthday, which will be in February and so, unless global warming accelerates dramatically in the next year or so, in winter conditions. And yes, F, you read it here first!↩