Dec 09 30
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There’s less snow here in Fort William than there was in the Lake District, so after skiing yesterday we thought we’d better do something else before we wrecked our skis. We decided to do some hiking amongst the mountains South of Glenfinnan.

Unfortunately, our plans were foiled by car trouble – it wouldn’t start at all this morning, so we called the RAC man. Turns out he had to come from Loch Lomond, so we had a two-and-a-half hour wait, which would have been fine if the rather useless RAC phone operators hadn’t told us it would be at most 75 minutes. Anyone know a better breakdown service?

Fortunately, we’re staying in a lovely B&B, Torlinnhe Guest House, that is right on the shores of the Loch, so we sat in their front room while they plied us with tea, and watched the world go by outside the window.

Eventually, the RAC man arrived and convinced us to replace the battery, and a short while later we were off to do our original plan, just at a greater pace.

We set off at about 2pm, so with only a couple of hours daylight, and quickly headed up into the hills. We picked a route that would take us up a wide valley, then over a pass with a descent to the shores of Loch Shiel and a return around the edge of the Loch. It was lovely in the shelter of the valley, with ankle-deep snow and loads of deer tracks, and deer, but up at the saddle, it was bitterly cold, so we didn’t stay long on the tops. Unfortunately, the descent turned out to be very steep – it was a good job there wasn’t any more snow or we would have turned back at the pass.

Rachel at the pass between Sgurr Craobh a'Chaorainn and Meall Doire na Mnatha

Rachel at the pass between Sgurr Craobh a'Chaorainn and Meall Doire na Mnatha

We reached the road just as the light faded, and ran the last five km along the Loch in growing darkness and light snow, with the trains going over Glenfinnan viaduct to keep us company. We certainly made the most of our abbreviated day, but were glad to see the car as night fell!

Richard tries to figure out where to go from here, or where here is.

Richard tries to figure out where to go from here, or where here is.

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