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Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!


Postby pollyh33 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:14 pm

Route description: Meall Ghaordaidh from Glen Lochay

Munros included on this walk: Meall Ghaordaidh

Date walked: 24/10/2011

Time taken: 4 hours

Distance: 10 km

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Two things were looming ahead of me, snow on the hills and reaching my 50th Munro- jings such incompatibility!!! :(

The good news was that our recent heatwave had melted the snow on the lower hills. It had been my intention to head for the Glas Maol Circuit but many of the forum users had said to avoid it in really bad weather, so I opted for Carn Gorm and her pals that make up the Glen Lyon Horseshoe. Gable Gable End had submitted a fab report in the summer and I had always fancied following in his footsteps. :D

Got myself organised the night before and looking at the map I discovered that Killin is exactly north of my house. Unfortunately the council in their wisdom have neglected to build road that would give me speedy access to the hills and unlike some members of the forum I don't have a microlight (did I spell it properly Frogwell?) at my disposal, so I would need to decide on whether to turn left or right when I left my street. Left would take me up the Loch Lomond road and right would take me up the Stirling road. Since I never tire of seeing the castle and the monument I opted to turn right. Big mistake, the traffic was awful, stop/start all the way to Buchany. A word of warning though to the fine figure of man who stays in the end house, if you're going to open your bedroom curtains might be an idea to turn the light off first oh and keep your PJ's on!!! :lol:

And so to Invervar. A wee bit of flaffing about and checking the map but got there about an hour later. On the way in I noticed a couple of Basil Rathbone lookalikeys in the fields and they were carrying some fine weapons, not shotguns but big rifles- definitely not for clay pigeon shooting! mmmmm! I parked near the red phone box and was soon joined by another car. As I set about getting my kit together so did they, and I was going to head over and say hello when a Landrover drove alongside and the driver said something to the blokes and they pretty much got back in their car and drove off right away. The Landrover driver had been pointing to a public noticeboard so I took a wander over and there in black and white, well black and green, was pie-chart type of thing informing the reader that stag culling was over but for the next two weeks (?) the hinds were going to be in the firing line! And just in case I didn't get the message there was another notice warning of shooting in the area. The notice looked pretty old and washed out and I thought for a wee while, maybe it will be okay and then maybe not. Today was just not happening the way I wanted it to but then again there were going to be a good few members of the cervine sisterhood who would be more than a wee bit disappointed on how their day panned out :( :(

Okay so onto Plan B or was it Plan C? The weather wasn't great but it wasn't horrendous either, I might get a wee bit wet but it was still quite warm and then I remembered the report that PeteR had submitted in September on Meall Ghaordaidh. He had similar conditions and despite the rain had really enjoyed his day. Fantastic! It would be on my road back and because of a previous jaunt up to Sgiath Chuil and Meal Glas I knew exactly where I was going, it had to happen one of these days :lol: Yes I thought, that will do for me. I know it is often described as an undistinguised lump but hey who hasn't been !!! :lol:

There were four cars already parked in the improvised layby, so with a bit of manoeuvring and scary scraping noises on the undercarriage I managed to get the car off the road. I waited until another car came along and sure enough it passed no problem. Great now I can start!

IMG_1817.JPG
Helpful!

Over to the gate, along the grassy track and then through a taller gate. One last look at the car and what did I see?, only the mobile library bus trying to get past!! I started to stomp back to the car but luckily he managed okay- thank you Mr Library Man :clap:

So you continue along the tyre tracks and then a wee bit of fun- over a stile.
IMG_1819.JPG
Track

IMG_1820.JPG
Stile

Unlike many, its in good condition and is safely anchored to the stone wall. From here you carry on until you see a very obvious cairn.
IMG_1821.JPG
Cairn

Needless to say I missed it and had to backtrack about 20m. I just don't do obvious, unless I'm trying to be subtle!!! The visibility was not too bad and I could see people at the start of the ridge. There's not much of a path, so I just picked out the best route I could. Later on it does begin to look quite boggy but it was quite firm underfoot. A prod with the walking poles reassured me I wouldn't end up ankle deep in the brown stuff ( sorry Mrs Redrock!)
IMG_1824.JPG
Not so boggy


As you can see from the previous photo , visibility was beginning to deteriorate and by the time I reached 900m it was pretty awful. With constant checking of my route on the GPS I was reassured I was heading in the right direction and just clambered over what ever was in front of me! I had one wee fall but since there was no-one to see me I didn't feel too much of a numpty :) 'A grown-up woman should never fall so easily' . You can sing it all you want Agnetha, you obviously haven't been out on the Scottish hills!! :D

It was on the last 50m that it got really hairy, the wind that had come and gone all day turned gale force and so any euphoria that I may been feeling at the sight of the Trig point through the clag was quickly disapated by need to do a crouchy-crab style of walking to get into the summit shelter. But what a shelter, once out the wind it was nice and cosy with plenty of flat stones to sit on. I had intended on touching the Trig point and heading back down but this was smashing.
IMG_1826.JPG
Snug at the Trig

So I actually relaxed, took some photos of my rucksack, had my coffee and sandwiches and a dark chocolate Bounty. As for the views there were none! Ah well, that's the way it goes :D I put my camera into my bag, its not like I would be needing it again :(

And now it was just the matter of getting off this hill safely. Whenever I stood up in the shelter the wind kept trying blow my hat off! Its bad enough that the weather deprived me of any views, I was damn sure it wasn't nicking my favourite hat as well. So it was hood zipped right up and more horizontal walking for about ten minutes and then as almost always happens, as soon as you drop down any height the wind all but disappears :? :D

I was still sticking rigidly to my WH route on my GPS, which was fine but not very exciting and then within seconds the clag legged it! Yippee, I now had a view but even better I now had choices. I could see the farm buildings near to the layby, it was just a case of finding a more interesting way of getting there. Further down there was an old stone wall, I love them so I headed in its direction. Without a conscious effort I started to gambol down the hill, all the tension I had been feeling earlier had gone and there I was, a middle-aged woman, belting out Rhianna's biggest ones!!! :lol:

I turned round to apologise to some disapproving sheep and what was I treated to? no not the Buck-naked Buchany man but a herd of hinds. 'Run girls!!!' I shouted but I'm guessing they were going to be doing that anyway :lol:
IMG_0568.JPG
Run!

The old stonewall was almost perpendicular with the wall that I would be crossing over via the stile near the end of the walk. So I just followed it along and took my time to look more closely at my surroundings.
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Pretty wee burn

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Yeeks!

There are a few more stiles over the wall and it may have saved me some time to cut across the fields. But I wasn't in any hurry and there may well have been bulls in them. No point in people complaining that farmers don't behave responsibly if you're going to put yourself in danger just for the sake of shaving off ten minutes from your walking time.

On the way down I used my camera phone to take pics but now that the sun had come out it was time to get the real camera out of the bag.

IMG_1828.JPG
Shielings

IMG_1834.JPG
Meall Dhuin Croisg looking pretty in the sunshine.


I was back at the car by 3.30 ish. So it was pretty much a 4 hour walk, with lots of stops to sniff around the many stone shielings and have refreshments. Final decision of the day was...head to Bridge of Lochay hotel where hopefully they would be serving their rather excellent pear and fennel soup or head to the Lade Inn and enjoy something delicious from their menu???? Given that I wasn't hungry (oh aye it was definitely a day of firsts for me!! :lol: ) I decided to head for the Lade Inn. Needless to say I wasn't disappointed because their pea and ham soup was smashing but was it as good as the pear and fennel, not quite but I wasn't complaining :D
IMG_0590.JPG
Pea and ham (from a chicken!!)

IMG_0591.JPG
Taken at 17.30! The nights are fair drawing in!!


It had been a strange but wonderful day. As for Glen Lyon I'm glad I played it safe. It could have ended in tragedy, no not my demise but the damage done to my new Haglofs jacket!!! :lol:
Last edited by pollyh33 on Thu Oct 27, 2011 11:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby PeteR » Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:39 pm

Excellent report Polly, and very entertaining as always :D

A shame you didn't get the glen lyon hills done as you had planned (I still have a single red flag on that group to turn blue sometime :shock: ) but glad you enjoyed Meall Ghaordaidh. Just a shame you had to enjoy the same views as I got when I was up there :( I'm sure the views on a good day are excellent, but I've said that a few times this summer :lol:

Looks like the bog has dried out then :lol: as it was pretty bad the day I was there :lol:

And you topped the day off at the Lade Inn :D I'm banned from there by MrsR, as I always end up in the shop next door stocking up on beers :D :D
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby goth_angel » Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:42 pm

Sorry you missed out on your original plans. We did that circuit on a Sunday to try and dodge the stalking. The head stalker is pretty helpful if you phone the estate in advance.

Not done Ghaordaidh yet but seems to be one to bear in mind for the winter.
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby pollyh33 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:49 pm

PeteR wrote:Excellent report Polly, and very entertaining as always :D

A shame you didn't get the glen lyon hills done as you had planned (I still have a single red flag on that group to turn blue sometime :shock: ) but glad you enjoyed Meall Ghaordaidh. Just a shame you had to enjoy the same views as I got when I was up there :( I'm sure the views on a good day are excellent, but I've said that a few times this summer :lol:

Looks like the bog has dried out then :lol: as it was pretty bad the day I was there :lol:

And you topped the day off at the Lade Inn :D I'm banned from there by MrsR, as I always end up in the shop next door stocking up on beers :D :D


Thanks Pete for your comments and your report, it really helped. I forgot to say I stopped at the Falls for 10 minutes, they are so hypnotic!

As for the Lade Inn, it should be called the Lade Back! I could sit in there all day, fantastic atmosphere- never changes!
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby pollyh33 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:52 pm

goth_angel wrote:Sorry you missed out on your original plans. We did that circuit on a Sunday to try and dodge the stalking. The head stalker is pretty helpful if you phone the estate in advance.

Not done Ghaordaidh yet but seems to be one to bear in mind for the winter.


Thanks GA,

I don't suppose you have the estate phone number. Whenever I click on their website it crashes!

Hoping to head back up there on Sunday :D

I think a lot of people save MG for the winter, would be great fun!
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby Graeme D » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:01 pm

pollyh33 wrote:I just don't do obvious, unless I'm trying to be subtle!!!


:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

So, this bloke in the end house in Buchany, was he, er......, well, you know???? :lol: :lol: :lol:

Anyway, very entertaining. I have Ghaordaidh provisionally planned for early December. Long fancied it for a winter ascent. I'll do the neighbouring Corbett at the same time, eh no Monty????? :shock:

I'll probably do it from the other side though - if you continue along the Glen Lyon road from Inverar. Said to be a more interesting ascent route of the lump.
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby tomyboy73 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:04 pm

well done Polly, nearly hitting the big 50 ! Pity it was a bit grimy, but you must be getting used to walking solo by now, and the madness that accompanies it :lol:
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby pollyh33 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:06 pm

Graeme Dewar wrote:
pollyh33 wrote:I just don't do obvious, unless I'm trying to be subtle!!!


:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

So, this bloke in the end house in Buchany, was he, er......, well, you know???? :lol: :lol: :lol:



Oh Aye!!!! :shock: :shock: :shock:

Its just tiny diversion on my way to work!!! :lol: :lol:
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby Alan S » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:07 pm

Nice one Polly just a pity you didnt get the 4 done as planned but maybe next time :)
Ive still got this one to do and will hopefully get it done before the years out :D
Great report as always 8)
pollyh33 wrote:A word of warning though to the fine figure of man who stays in the end house, if you're going to open your bedroom curtains might be an idea to turn the light off first oh and keep your PJ's on

Damm, I knew I Shouldnt have turned the lights on, I forgot about the dark mornings :lol:
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby pollyh33 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:09 pm

tomyboy73 wrote:well done Polly, nearly hitting the big 50 ! Pity it was a bit grimy, but you must be getting used to walking solo by now, and the madness that accompanies it :lol:



Thanks TB!

Solo walking is very liberating!!! :lol:
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby pollyh33 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:10 pm

alan s wrote:Nice one Polly just a pity you didnt get the 4 done as planned but maybe next time :)
Ive still got this one to do and will hopefully get it done before the years out :D
Great report as always 8)
pollyh33 wrote:A word of warning though to the fine figure of man who stays in the end house, if you're going to open your bedroom curtains might be an idea to turn the light off first oh and keep your PJ's on

Damm, I knew I Shouldnt have turned the lights on, I forgot about the dark mornings :lol:


Thanks Alan.

I forgot to note the time! You couldn't remind me, could you :lol:
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby pigeon » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:11 pm

Pea and ham,that's more like it :lol:
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby pollyh33 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:29 pm

pigeon wrote:Pea and ham,that's more like it :lol:



I bet yours would still taste best of all :thumbup:
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby Scotjamie » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:39 pm

Nice one Polly. Very enjoyable report with your usual humour and brightness. Walked MG solo a few years ago - not only missed your obvious cairn, but also missed the obvious sign and obvious path, and marched straight up from Tullich (harder but less boggy). Shouldn't rub it in, but views are very good, though I missed the views inside the Lade.
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Re: Oh Deer! I'm Not Taking A Bullet For A Lyon!

Postby rockhopper » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:43 pm

:lol: must be something about this hill as it seems that there are more reports with no views than there are with views (may just seem that way) - still, at least you saw more than me as I can recall having total white out conditions going between Beinn nan Oighreag and Meall Ghaordaidh last March 8)
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