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New tyres and pads......some way to lose the Xmas pounds!

PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 1:56 pm
by PeteR
Another title for this report would have been “Coaxing MrsR out of retirement on Meall a Bhuachaille”. As it was events pre-walking dictated the decision on the report title for me :shock:

With MrsR having the weekend off it was a chance for us to get away and have a bit of “us” time. The destination of choice was Aviemore. And I was on a promise too..........for a wee walk that is :lol: :D

Alas things didn’t get off to a good start

I’d done a few miles of Christmas/New Year driving and thought a tire pressure check would be in order. Not only did I discover the pressures were all over the shire I also discovered the condition of all four tyres probably weren’t conducive to much more punishment from me So off for new tyres we went :( Further investigation when at the tyre replacement shop indicated the rear pads were pretty much down to the metal as well (and there was me having motored on a 1,000 mile round trip to East Sussex and back just three days before.......gulp :shock:). So we weren’t even out of Ayrshire yet, and after a couple of hours in the delights of Killie I was the guts of 500 pound lighter already. Now, I may have the makings of a small :lol: rubber ring forming round my middle, but stone me I’m not that overwieght :lol:

Anyway, let’s get back to happier pursuits and the walking :D

Saturday was a gentle amble up the A9 with my super grippy tyres and “dogs dangly bits” brake pads :lol: We weren’t in a hurry though and late afternoon found us sourcing what turned out to be a fantastic guest house – the Ravenscraig. Our luck continued in the nearby hostelry, where we were able to enjoy a few drinks (in my case some pints of Wild Cat) and an excellent meal :D

Sunday dawned to a stunning sunrise with the sky seeming to burn red
Aviemore sunrise - under a blood red sky

No Shepherd’s warning though (excuse the pun) as we were set for a great day out in the (increasingly) fresh air

My plan was to coax MrsR to the Glenmore Lodge and the short walk to Lochan Uaine and then on to Ryvoan bothy, where I hoped to convince her that the walk up onto Meall a Bhuachaille didn't look too bad and maybe she should give it a go. It’s probably worth pointing out my walking experience with MrsR to this point - Ben A’an (distant thunderstorm, but not so distant rain so oa soaking was the order of the day!!) and Ben Vrackie (least said, soonest mended and my old mother would have said!!!!). After her Vrackie experience alone MrsR had announced her retirement from hill walking on account of the fact that the experience had nearly finished her off :lol:

It should also be noted on a serious point that MrsR does in fact suffer from Fibromyalgia and too much physical activity can play real havoc with her lower back and legs. To her credit though she does remain active, although I need to appreciate that even reasonably straightforward hill walking for us hill walking types is going to be well on the edge of her (dis)comfort zone.

All parked up and kitted up and we were off :D A nice gentle pace (or so I hoped) as we wandered along the excellent track to Lochan Uaine, where we stopped for a few moments to soak up the views and enjoy the silence – it almost seemed sacrilegious to impose on that silence, so any conversations were in hushed tones.
The lovely Lochan Uaine

Onward we went through the Ryvoan Pass and on to the Ryvoan bothy. All good so far :D I’d mooted the idea of a wee hill and luckily for me the path up from the bothy looked pretty reasonable. After a quick snoop round the bothy it was time to make my move and see if MrsR was up for it. Personally I was happy with whatever decision she reached, but I can’t deny a part of me was chuffed when she agreed to give it a go :thumbup:
Ryvoan bothy

View back to the Cairngorms

The gentle start up Meall a'Bhuachaille

View over the moorland from the path up the Corbett

Coire ant-Sneachda

Cairngorms, with Lochan Uiane

Ben Rinnes

Bynack More

MrsR pressing on uphill

Early signs were good, as the gentle(ish) ascent seemed to be met with her approval. Things went slightly down hill every time we hit any of the laid stone pathway on the steeper climbs :( I was trying to keep her focused and encourage her along, but I was feeling her spirit sag a bit each time we hit these step sections. Not MrsR’s favourite part of the walk. After one particularly steep section I was amazed that MrsR had kept on going, but soon after this, with the route almost to the top visible ahead of us disaster struck :shock:

MrsR announced she was done, she’d had enough, she wasn’t going any further :( She was happy for me to press on to the summit, but it would be alone as she found a spot to sit and look after the rucksack. I was disappointed, I’ll admit. But it wasn’t my place to force her, so reluctantly I set off to touch the summit cairn.
The path what made MrsR's mind up

Looking back. MrsR would have been sitting a little out of sight as the path went from right to left below the line of the hill

And then everything changed again :D

Turning the final corner (which MrsR could just about see from where she was sitting) the final, gentle ascent to the cairn could be seen. But better than that.......Rudolph and a small herd of his buddies were grazing just up from the path. Clearly enjoying a post Christmas break on their way back to Lapland after all their efforts a couple of weeks earlier :lol: :lol:
Rudolph and pals grazing. Totally disinterested in me, although slightly more interested in a couple who came up behind me with their dog!

After a brief pause to take some snaps I was on up to the summit to touch the cairn and get a few summit shots. It was a tad breezy :lol: (like, blowing a gale :lol:) so I wasn’t there long before heading back to MrsR.
Cairn shot

View of Cairngorms from the summit. I could barely stand at times as the wind did it's best to blow me over

"Who you saying only has one antler?"
"Not me pal"

On arriving back I mentioned that she would kick herself if she didn’t finish off the hill, especially as she had done the hard part already (which she really had done - it was all fairly gentle for the final section). Armed with my photies I laid on the charm to see if she would give it a go :lol:

Somewhat reluctantly it has to be said she did agree :D I say "somewhat", what I really mean is she wasn't happy, but if it shut me up she'd just have to suffer :lol:

We took our time, on account of the fact that I knew it was hurting, but soon enough we turned the corner and there they were. Rudolph and fiends :D They must have some sort of healing power, as immediately I could tell MrsR's whole demeanour changed. There was a real spring to her step all of a sudden and the smile was back on her face :D She was clearly taken with how placid Rudolph and his pals were and how close we could get to them.
Back with Rudolph and his pals, this time on the lower slope

Albino reindeer

After a few minutes in their company we were off to the summit :D It was still blowing a gale and frankly quite cold :lol:

So we didn’t hang around long. Rather than retrace our steps we chose to head down to the saddle between Meall a Bhuachaille and Creagan Gorm and take the path back to Glenmore from there (I may have jockingly suggested continuing the walk over the ridge, making sure I was far enough away when I did so :lol: ). Very breezy at the top, but MrsR was pleased to let me know that despite the fact she sh****g herself she was really enjoying it :D which was great to hear.
Moody skies heading toward the Cairbgorms. Luckily we missed them, although the wind was strong enough to blow some rain over as they passed nearby

Creagan Gorm as we made our way down.

The path down to the road as we dropped down from the Creagan Gorm saddle

Moody skies over the Cairngorms.

I can't resit a nice tree shot

Toward Sgoran Dubh More I think, part of the Sgor Gaoith

And, after 5 hours from setting off we were at the roadside :D Given the discomfort MrsR was in I for one think that’s not a bad time at all :thumbup:

And her reward? Parsnip and Haggis soup :D Washed down with a lovely sandwich (rare Highland beef and horseradish for me and cheese and pickle for MrsR) and a rather tasty homemade sweet, all washed down with a large latte to die for :D :thumbup: I mentioned something about "2 down, 219 to go". How MrsR laughed :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

A perfect end to a perfect day :D

So, that's 2013 hill walking up and running :D And all made better by being in the company of MrsR too :D :D

Re: New tyres and pads......some way to lose the Xmas pounds

PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 3:02 pm
by mrssanta
well done to MrsR I hope she was not too stiff and sore the next day.

Re: New tyres and pads......some way to lose the Xmas pounds

PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 4:41 pm
by Gavin99
A nice report Pete , glad you both got to see the reindeer and the summit , a grand wee walk 8)

Re: New tyres and pads......some way to lose the Xmas pounds

PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 8:05 pm
by luibnaclach
excellent pics and report,a big well done to mrs on her effort

never ever underestimate a womans determination

Re: New tyres and pads......some way to lose the Xmas pounds

PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 8:34 pm
by rockhopper
Good stuff pete - was up this hill with Mrs RH a wee while back but in summer instead - great views and a nice walk into the bargain although the reindeer were further up at that point. As for the Wild Cat - have you tried Nessie's Monster Mash, Black Gold or the Blessed Thistle ? We're up there most years and I often bring a box of beers back down from the Cairngorm Brewery :D - cheers :)

Re: New tyres and pads......some way to lose the Xmas pounds

PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 9:55 pm
by ChrisW
Great report Pete, congrats to Mrs R on the summit (I remember reading her retirement report and am surprised she revisited the sport at all :lol: ) and congrats to you on summiting twice :shock: ...great start to the year mate, long may it continue :clap:

Re: New tyres and pads......some way to lose the Xmas pounds

PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 10:47 pm
by Silverhill
Well done to MrsR! A great start to a new bagging year. :D

Re: New tyres and pads......some way to lose the Xmas pounds

PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2013 9:11 pm
by morag1
£500??? OUCH!!!

Well done Mrs R, great stuff, where next I wonder :think:

Re: New tyres and pads......some way to lose the Xmas pounds

PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2013 9:46 pm
by PeteR
Thanks all for the comments. I think MrsR's next trip to the hills may be some time.........given the weather we are having at the moment :shock: The good news as far as I was concerned on this trip was that she didn't feel at all sore afterwards.....unlike post Vrackie. So hopefully all systems go for more walks, once the weather improves :D

Re: New tyres and pads......some way to lose the Xmas pounds

PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2013 1:02 pm
by Caberfeidh
PeteR wrote: I was the guts of 500 pound lighter already.

You lucky, lucky [expletive deleted !!] I was going to head up to Kintail, but poor driving conditions, avalanche-proneness and the charms of a lady reduced my enthusiasm for going. Also the sneaking suspicion that the Caberfeidh-mobile wasn't stopping with the alacrity one might wish for led me to cancel the trip. I put the charabanc in to be sussed for new brake pads, only to receive a doleful telephone call at Caberfeidh Towers informing me that all of the tyres, pads and discs were worn to an illegal degree, "and one o' yer tyres has a nail through it!" rejoiced the wretched Kwik-Fit-U-Up-Like-A-Kipper mechanic. The bill came to a staggering £1,235 !!! Would anyone like to buy a kidney? One careless owner.... :shock:

Re: New tyres and pads......some way to lose the Xmas pounds

PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2015 9:42 am
by litljortindan
Great report.