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Ben A'an

Ben A'an

Postby maryhillmoose » Tue Jan 10, 2012 4:06 pm

Route description: Ben A'an

Date walked: 02/01/2012

Time taken: 2 hours

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After a sluggish holiday period with exercise of any kind thwarted by weather, colds, hangovers and over indulgence in general we decided we needed to blow off the cobwebs and get a grip. Monday 2nd started out looking not too bad at all (from Glasgow anyway) so by 9am it was agreed to head up to Aberfoyle and take a wee jaunt up Ben A'an, just enough to get the legs going without being too much of a shock to the system. Packed up and almost heading out the door when the lesser-spotted teenage daughter suddenly appeared in the hallway and announced ' I'm coming too'. What seemed like three hours later, after kitting her out in a mix of our old cast offs, we headed up in the car. Quite snowy on the Dukes Pass meaning a careful drive down to Achray where we spotted a sign on opposite side saying the road was closed - no such sign at the Aberfoyle end -oops. Kitted up and off we went, bit boggy but otherwise fine:

Once into the forestry it started snowing lightly, the trees looked lovely dusted with snow and we were in good spirits. The path was very boggy in places but this being a popular walk there are plenty of old logs, stepping stones etc to help you over the worst bits. After around 30 mins we emerged from the forestry and the hill opened up in front of us. Just that 100m higher and we were into quite a thick blanket of snow:

The teenager surprised us by doing quite well thus far...she actually made various faces that suggested enjoyment, despite procalamations about the fashion crimes we were all committing. The hill climb proper started and we had to engage hands to rock to clamber up the steep embankment alongside the stream. We missed the (usually obvious) point where the path crosses the stream simply down to the snow covering the route, but we improvised by taking a higher route directly up the stream itself to a safe crossing point involving just a minor scramble. To be honest I made this a little more interesting just for the purposes of hearing teenage squeals and her mock terror at having to actually climb up through the stream...

By now the weather had closed in quite a bit, but with only a short walk to the summit ahead of us we pressed on:

It started snowing just as we reached the top, the normally excellent views replaced by a sheet of stone grey paper behind us, no hanging about here, a few pics, quickly got the teenager into full waterproofs and then we headed down via a bit of a blizzard:



Back at the car within two hours, no snow, no people and no moaning from the teenager, not convinced we have managed to fully convert her but it was certainly the most active I think she has been in a loooong while! A good wee day made all the better because we shared it with our daughter, hopefully the first of many?!! :)
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Re: Ben A'an

Postby allansmitchell » Tue Jan 10, 2012 4:39 pm

What a difference a day makes, we walked this the day before in the rain :?
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Re: Ben A'an

Postby starrynights » Tue Jan 10, 2012 8:02 pm

:lol: :lol: :lol:

I loved reading this report. 'the lesser spotted teenager' - had me in fits. And then 'the teenager' references - they really are a breed apart :) And of course, we were never like that 8) I haven't any children, but do have nieces and a nephew that I'm lucky enough to have a great relationship with. I remember one walk with one of them (called - small hairy child at that time :D) - we took her on a forest walk on the north side of Loch Earn. It was spring time and lovely weather. We hadn't intended it being a long walk, she was only about 5!! but as it was so nice we continued on. We climbed higher and higher, small hairy child complaining bitterly all the time, us telling her it was good for her and she should try to enjoy the scenery and look for animals etc etc. Then it started to rain :shock: Warm spring rain - quite pleasant actually. Small hairy child had other ideas - she hated it. She had no waterproof jacket so we adapted mine - rolled the sleeves up and zipped her up. I have a picture of her standing on the path, jacket reaching the floor - and a look of pure abject misery on her face. It was classic. After reassuring her it wasn't raining inside the jacket - that was sweat, and that she wouldn't die of dehydration -that would take a few days - we gave in and headed back. Both my sister and I starting to feel quite mean. (Nothing to do with small hairy child threatening to report us for child cruelty :problem: )

Once back to our holiday cottage - small hairy child proclaimed she loved walking in the hills and wished we had stayed out longer!! You just cannae win :? She has that photo on her facebook site now, think she's quite proud of it!!

Hope your daughter continues to enjoy trips out with you from now on. Lovely pic of you both.
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Re: Ben A'an

Postby mrssanta » Tue Jan 10, 2012 11:19 pm

have had similar experiences, my sister and I once took 8 kids on an expedition (7 were our own, and a friend) , 7 mile walk, overnight camp in caves, walk back. Moaned all the way there and all the way back, but have talked about it for years afterwards as one of the best things they have ever done.
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