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Schiehallion: Hill of the Ancestor Spirits of the Caledonian

Schiehallion: Hill of the Ancestor Spirits of the Caledonian


Postby jimandandrea » Thu Mar 31, 2011 9:40 pm

Route description: Schiehallion

Munros included on this walk: Schiehallion

Date walked: 25/03/2011

Time taken: 4 hours

Distance: 9 km

Ascent: 730m

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Fairy mountain, or maiden's pap - which to chose? Its not about hits on the report is it really? Fairy Mountain it is then.
Parked early - our last day before heading home and it looked good. If all went to plan this would be 12 Munro's we had done in a great week's holiday. The weather looked good, wind was minimal - lets go.
Schiehallion Pana 1 March 11.jpg
Schiehallion

If the first day had been like this I am not sure we would have needed a map - all you had to do really was walk and talk - although not always at the same time. After the cairn that marks the end of the John Muir Trust path, its a path that appears then dissappears then reappears then peaters out then oh stuff it - just head upwards.
Well it might have started out great on the weather front but by this freestyle section the cloud came down and visability dropped. Here we go again - compass - head west.
It was quite a surprise when it cleared (a bit) and you could see how steep the ridge to our left was and how far below the valley was. It never really seemed that you were going up. Too busy gabbing! Eventually the top was reached and it cleared - a bit.
SChiehallion pana 2 March 11_edited-1.jpg
View from the top

Although we were not best pleased at least we saw something. Felt sorry for the two guys in front who headed back as they thought it would not clear. It is always something when you get to see something from the summit.
As we descended it did clear a bit.
Schiehallion AL pana March 11.jpg

We even got to see the the Lawers range and Carn Mairg that we had been up on day one - and seen nought of and from.
Schiehallion March 11_0039_edited-1.jpg
Lawers range and Carn Mairg

It did clear though and Mr Sun came out again.
Schiehallion AL pana 2 March 11.jpg

As we made our way back down it was a very pleasant end to our week. We had a wee rest and took in the view on the comfy chairs and shared a Tunnoch's Tea cake (oh joy!)
Schiehallion March 11_0066_edited-1.jpg

Actually, they are our 'emergency Tunnoch's' Only to be used in the event of a disaster: a very low blood sugar, we are lost and need encouragement or they are about to go out of date so what the hell we better eat them.
So that was our last day - some dull times but never a dull moment.
Schiehallion up and down March 11.jpg

Back soon.
Last edited by jimandandrea on Sun Apr 03, 2011 8:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Schiehallion: Fairy Mountain

Postby ChrisW » Fri Apr 01, 2011 4:23 pm

Great report and a couple of cracking pics - well done on waiting it out :D
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Re: Schiehallion: Fairy Mountain

Postby trekpete » Fri Apr 01, 2011 5:59 pm

Looked a fair enough day. At least it cleared and gave you a view though. One of my favorite view points in winterm though I was denied the view back in November last year :(

Peter
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Re: Schiehallion: Fairy Mountain

Postby Graeme D » Sat Apr 02, 2011 10:09 pm

Great pictures. I'm quite jealous of your week of 12 Munros! :mrgreen: This was my first Munro - long overdue a return visit. 8)
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Re: Schiehallion: Fairy Mountain

Postby jimandandrea » Sun Apr 03, 2011 9:37 am

Graeme Dewar wrote:Great pictures. I'm quite jealous of your week of 12 Munros! :mrgreen: This was my first Munro - long overdue a return visit. 8)


Cheers. It was a great week but it will be awhile before we are up again. So we are so envious :mrgreen: that you have them on your doorstep. So we will keep our spirits up by reading all the reports :) .
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Re: Schiehallion: Fairy Mountain

Postby Caberfeidh » Sun Apr 03, 2011 10:48 am

Nice photos! It's been years since I've been there.That whole "fairy" thing is a poor translation. From the gaelic Sithean (pronounced shee-aan); this would be better translated as "ancestor spirits", as legendary figures are in many cultures. Often sites named as sithean -something, like cnoc na sithean (cnoc=hillock) or Glen Sithean (Glen Shee of skiing fame) have ancient archeoloigal sites, like burial mounds, standing stones or settlement patterns. Schiehallion's anglified name of Fairy Hill of the Caledonians sounds pretentious and peculiar; it makes more sense when translated as Hill of the Ancestor Spirits of the Caledonians,it is an ancient name dating from pre-Christian times. Southern "fairies" were purely mythical, Highland Sithean were based on real people: stone-age, bronze-age or iron-age whose exploits have gained legendary status down the centuries. Lets not damn them with faint praise.
walking with ancestors.jpg
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Re: Schiehallion: Fairy Mountain

Postby Klaasloopt » Sun Apr 03, 2011 11:49 am

Caberfeidh wrote:That whole "fairy" thing is a poor translation. From the gaelic Sithean (pronounced shee-aan); this would be better translated as "ancestor spirits", as legendary figures are in many cultures.


Insightful! This sounds much more like Norse, Icelandic or Greenlandic place names. Especially in Greenland, there are a lot of ways to turn into a spirit (shamans, outcasts, murders, deceased) and there's a lot of places around settlements where these spirits are said to have their influence or residence. This all sounds much more logical (as something we would do ourselves, e.g. when naming a chair 'grandpa's chair') than all this fairy stuff.
Thanks!
klaas
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Re: Schiehallion: Fairy Mountain

Postby Caberfeidh » Sun Apr 03, 2011 1:16 pm

Caberfeidh wrote:archeoloigal


My apologies for the appalling spelling mistaks. :shock:
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Re: Schiehallion: Fairy Mountain

Postby morag1 » Sun Apr 03, 2011 3:06 pm

Hi, just to say that the Scots have always held a belief in the "fairy people" and stories of fairies, kelpies, sprites and guilleaugh dhu have long been passsed down the generations. Both Robert Burns and Walter Scott mention these beliefs in their poems, although Burns described them as superstitious nonsense. Fairy people were believed to live in the hollows of trees and often farmers would refuse to cut down or remove old trees from their lands in case the fairy people put a curse on them for doing so.

There was a long held belief in a Banshee that would appear and wail before someone's death. It used to be a common expression in Scotland to say that a women who was upset and crying was "screaming like a banshee".

I dont know what Schiehallion means but the I feel the connection to "shee" is too strong to ignore and the name might well mean "fairy mountain" although that probably does not go down well with your average Scottish male!!
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Re: Schiehallion: Fairy Mountain

Postby chickadee » Sun Apr 03, 2011 4:40 pm

I love Schiehallion, or rather when I've been past it in a car I have thought it is lovely! I hope to get up there one day myself. Lovely photos!
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Re: Schiehallion: Fairy Mountain

Postby jimandandrea » Sun Apr 03, 2011 8:23 pm

Caberfeidh wrote:Nice photos! It's been years since I've been there.That whole "fairy" thing is a poor translation. From the gaelic Sithean (pronounced shee-aan); this would be better translated as "ancestor spirits", as legendary figures are in many cultures. Often sites named as sithean -something, like cnoc na sithean (cnoc=hillock) or Glen Sithean (Glen Shee of skiing fame) have ancient archeoloigal sites, like burial mounds, standing stones or settlement patterns. Schiehallion's anglified name of Fairy Hill of the Caledonians sounds pretentious and peculiar; it makes more sense when translated as Hill of the Ancestor Spirits of the Caledonians,it is an ancient name dating from pre-Christian times. Southern "fairies" were purely mythical, Highland Sithean were based on real people: stone-age, bronze-age or iron-age whose exploits have gained legendary status down the centuries. Lets not damn them with faint praise.
walking with ancestors.jpg


Quite right - your wish is our command- the title has been changed. :thumbup:
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Re: Schiehallion: Hill of the Ancestor Spirits of the Caledonian

Postby Caberfeidh » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:28 am

Thankyou! May the eagle of fortune soar over your lodge...

Alright boys, dismantle that wicker man, we wont be needing it after all...
wickerman 01.jpg
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Re: Schiehallion: Fairy Mountain

Postby morag1 » Wed Dec 19, 2012 11:10 am

[quote="morag1"]Hi, just to say that the Scots have always held a belief in the "fairy people" and stories of fairies, kelpies, sprites and guilleaugh dhu have long been passsed down the generations.
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Re: Schiehallion: Fairy Mountain

Postby Caberfeidh » Wed Dec 19, 2012 2:17 pm

morag1 wrote:
morag1 wrote:
morag1 wrote:Hi, just to say that the Scots have always held a belief in the "fairy people" and stories of fairies, kelpies, sprites and guilleaugh dhu have long been passsed down the generations.

morag1 wrote:I dont know what Schiehallion means but the I feel the connection to "shee" is too strong to ignore and the name might well mean "fairy mountain" although that probably does not go down well with your average Scottish male!!


What did I just say a year and a half ago? She's been at the gin again.... :crazy:
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Re: Schiehallion: Hill of the Ancestor Spirits of the Caledo

Postby morag1 » Wed Dec 19, 2012 5:17 pm

Not sure what happened there, dont really want this surfacing again :oops:

Caberfeidh wrote: She's been at the gin again

:shh: :shh: :shh:


Guess what my new year resolution is going to be :angel:
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