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We Shall be Released (from Lockdown)

We Shall be Released (from Lockdown)


Postby weaselmaster » Fri Apr 16, 2021 8:17 pm

Munros included on this walk: Beinn Ìme, Beinn Narnain

Corbetts included on this walk: The Cobbler

Date walked: 16/04/2021

Time taken: 8 hours

Distance: 18.5 km

Ascent: 1588m

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It's been a long time in coming. Last time we were up a proper hill (sorry Hill of Stake and Blaeloch Hill) was back in early December when Inverclyde had a brief "Level 2" status period. The intervening months have taken their toll on me mentally and physically - I've lost all my hill fitness and gained two stones in weight. Allison injured her shoulder on our last walk and sadly has been having ongoing problems with that - today was the first time she has put on a rucksack in more than 4 months.

We had been - like many other folk on here- vaguely looking forward to April 26th for some hill-liberation and the unexpected (to me at any rate, having become inured to every day being like the one before) announcement that we could go out places from today was a surprise. Allison was quite clear - she wanted nice easy Munros with paths, none of our more recent Marilyn death traps thank you very much. With a good weather forecast we guessed the roads and hills would be crammed. With a hint of nostalgia, we chose Narnain and Ime - which had been our first Munros together, back in another space/time dimension when viruses didn't prevent you from living your life. That had been a memorable outing as we had managed to get lost (several times) although clag had a good deal to do with that. We'd been up the hills subsequently, having come in from the east over A Chrois and returning over Ben Vane - ah these were the days when we had some fitness...

Getting up early was a shock to the system - recently I've been languishing in bed til 8 or 9, and I thought we should make a start no later than 7. Beautiful sunny, crisp morning, the roads busy through Dumbarton, but ok up the A82. It felt weird to be driving for so long... We passed the already almost full car park at Succoth - no way am I paying £9 to park my car - and drove along the road just under a km to an alternative and free parking spot. How was the day going to go? Would we be able to manage some sustained elevation after all these months out of the saddle?

We walked past the little path that heads directly up Narnain and had to turn around - good start! The dry weather meant the ground wasn't bad underfoot and we took it steadily on the ascent. I don't remember the path being as clear as this from 2012 - indeed there are lots of path improvements all around these hills. It was lovely to be in amongst mountains again, with proper views. A light haze sa over Ben Arthur, the odd patch of snow in a gully here and there where the sun's rays haven't penetrated. A wee scramble up to the summit, Allison being careful of her injured arm. And no-one else at the top - quite surprised (although a hill runner did silently appear and then disappear).

Image6E6D52C5-3209-40A3-A718-85A0188B2D6F_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageEB7C6006-05C1-40F4-91DD-4CCDE9453369_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image723E875F-4AEB-4E23-BEFE-4A604D2E633E_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image4FAB35BD-F631-46C6-AD23-DBFF0BD570E8_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageC749616B-0CD2-4C74-AE52-A7CBF73868C7_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

This was how we looked in the same spot in Sept 2012...
ImageP1010045 by Al, on Flickr

We wandered down towards the bealach with Ime, wondering how we could have gone so badly wrong the first time we were here. Stopping for an early lunch at the lowest point we watched several groups of people head up or descend from Ime. It looked a long way up from where we were sitting. However, the new path made the ascent very smooth. We sat for a bit at the summit, chatting to some folk already there and watching the odd raven flying past. A covering of residual snow coated the north face of the corrie ahead of us.

ImageCB6A4E3F-872E-436F-B5E9-1DA7B6A16B23_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageB3DBF475-1A03-4E82-975E-27BC0C19673E_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

As we made our way slowly down, the question was - do we do Ben Arthur as well? It seemed a shame not to - especially as we would walk past the path up and it was only another 270m ascent. I thought about the calories being burned and maybe being able - in the coming weeks - to get into some of the hill-gear that no longer fits me. We arrived at the top, with no-one else around - another surprise. I'd swithered whether or not to go up to the summit rock - it was fairly windy and I was feeling a little unsure of scrambles, but Allison was away ahead of me, crawling through Argyll's Eyeglass. Given that she has little use of her left arm at present, I was slightly anxious about the moves she'd have to make getting onto the top rock and followed behind. Of course she was fine. There was a climber or guide with ropes on the other side of the summit block, so that we could hear him but not see him...after we'd been up and down we saw him on the top assisting a lady up on a rope. One downside of us summiting this is that we'll now feel obliged to get on with a third round of Corbetts :wink: although Allison was of the opinion that there were plenty of other targets to achieve before that (like finishing off the Grahams for the second round I muttered, but I don't think she heard me...).

ImageD55DD16A-CD0A-4530-8270-BD4DD8AA8380_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageB13EA556-AC68-4073-8399-BCCB08E3D29D_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

We headed down the way we'd come up and walked back along the track towards the zigzags. it was getting on for 4pm by this time and we passed a number of folk heading up for a walk or whatever. By the time we were at the bottom section of the zigzags we could both feel the effects of the unaccustomed effort in our legs, although not that bad to be honest. Whether that will be the same story tomorrow remains to be seen.

ImageCFCF1340-6CC1-4E42-A0AC-AF53E7BC0466_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr
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weaselmaster
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 1937
Munros:227   Corbetts:45
Grahams:76   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:377   Hewitts:31
Wainwrights:15   Islands:28
Joined: Aug 22, 2012
Location: Greenock

Re: We Shall be Released (from Lockdown)

Postby mash tun » Fri Apr 16, 2021 9:21 pm

A nice way to get released - well done despite the lay off. Little difference to 9 years ago :wink: although I see that Allison's cap is a little more frayed around the edges.
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mash tun
 
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Re: We Shall be Released (from Lockdown)

Postby weaselmaster » Fri Apr 16, 2021 10:18 pm

mash tun wrote:Little difference to 9 years ago :wink: although I see that Allison's cap is a little more frayed around the edges.

I think I look rather crazed in the early photo. And Allison is very concerned about her fraying cap...keeps promising to repair it. Heaven forfend that she needs to replace it 😅
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weaselmaster
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 1937
Munros:227   Corbetts:45
Grahams:76   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:377   Hewitts:31
Wainwrights:15   Islands:28
Joined: Aug 22, 2012
Location: Greenock

Re: We Shall be Released (from Lockdown)

Postby Collaciotach » Sat Apr 17, 2021 10:13 pm

Sin sibh !! ...there you are . Have given you pair some thought over the last while ...good too see you back out :clap: :clap:
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Collaciotach
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1812
Munros:282   Corbetts:159
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Joined: Aug 8, 2011
Location: Gaidhealtachd an Iar

Re: We Shall be Released (from Lockdown)

Postby weaselmaster » Sat Apr 17, 2021 10:25 pm

Thank you, Colla, it is good to be out again. Was up Ben Vorlich today and remarked to Allison how much happier I felt for just spending some hours out in the hills again 🙂
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weaselmaster
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 1937
Munros:227   Corbetts:45
Grahams:76   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:377   Hewitts:31
Wainwrights:15   Islands:28
Joined: Aug 22, 2012
Location: Greenock

Re: We Shall be Released (from Lockdown)

Postby onsen » Sat Apr 17, 2021 10:45 pm

I hear you on your lockdown lack of fitness & a few extra covid kilo's... :wink:
Enjoy your freedom.
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onsen
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Posts: 278
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Location: The Great Southern Land, Australia

Re: We Shall be Released (from Lockdown)

Postby AJ01 » Sun Apr 18, 2021 9:34 am

Weight to fitness ratio gone badly in the wrong direction? Yes, me too. :roll:

Angus
AJ01
 
Posts: 26
Munros:221   Corbetts:3
Grahams:1   
Joined: Aug 11, 2020
Location: Opposite end of the UK.

Re: We Shall be Released (from Lockdown)

Postby Plug » Sun Apr 18, 2021 10:42 am

Excellent, glad to see you both back out safe and well on the hills. I've missed your weekly updates on your various adventures. They have been a great aid to planning for many years!
Plug
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Posts: 1
Joined: Jan 30, 2021

Re: We Shall be Released (from Lockdown)

Postby Mountainlove » Sun Apr 18, 2021 1:40 pm

Great seeing you out on the big hills again... And also great to read that I am not the only one who put on weight lol... Can't wait either to get my hill fitness back!
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