taking the dog for a walk in the park
by litljortindan » Fri Aug 29, 2014 3:09 pm
Route description: Sgor Gaoith, from Glen Feshie
Munros included on this walk: Sgor Gaoith
Date walked: 27/08/2014
Time taken: 7 hours
Distance: 13.5 km
Ascent: 820m8 people think this report is great. Register or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
Had wanted to go to Braeriach this month but decided on an easier alternative instead.
My wife took me by surprise and asked if I would take our dog Bracken with me and before I could think that through properly me and the dog were in the car at 3.30am and heading off for Sgor Gaoith.
The car park is pretty much beside the road with big signs there and just before a bridge so fairly easy to spot. The walk starts off quite plain in a plantation but this soon gives way to a wonderful pine wood spread out across a steep sided glen/gorge down which you can hear and occasionally see a stream tumbling over the rocks.
I made an error after 2km and took a left fork instead of right which I decided to remedy with a direct route across the hillside. Not the best of decisions but soon back on track.
The first 4km is an unbelievably easy ascent up to the 600m contour and after this the gradient steepens a bit but still a good path over short grass and moss. A slip on the grass reminded me to get my poles out and then I began my multi task of pole and dog lead management i.e. untangling the dog's legs / the lead / the pole(s) every ten minutes. Had the dog on her lead to avoid disturbing birds and because she has terminal cancer. I thought if I control her on the way up to conserve her energy she'll either manage ok and have plenty energy for the descent or else have enough energy for a retreat should one be needed. Needn't have worried.
Just below the plateau the wind picked up and the horizon was lined with cloud. I feared I would get a repeat of the bad luck I'd had in Ireland in June but the opposite happened. Once onto the plateau the wind dropped and the blue sky expanded leaving us with a very pleasant stroll across to the cliff edge. I wasn't really prepared for such a fantastic view -Braeriach looming across the other side of the glen, the loch shimmering and rippling below and the cliffs lining the way north to the seemingly tapering summit.
We wandered up and over the summit a short distance just soaking in the views then had a break on the plateau where Bracken decided to have a wee nap. She became unusually affectionate when she woke up which felt like she was saying thank you, or at least I like to think so.
A nice easy walk back to the car but a bit of a panic when I found no phone credit on my mobile and I couldn't top up for a call home. Turned out to be an unhelpful automated anti fraud intervention by my bank. Happily there was a pay phone in Aviemore.
All in all a splendid day helped, of course, by the weather but also by the very easy approach.
Long version of video:
by litljortindan » Sun Aug 31, 2014 8:28 pm
by Sarah86 » Mon Sep 01, 2014 1:50 pm
by litljortindan » Tue Sep 02, 2014 6:52 pm
Sarah86 wrote:That definitely beats a walk in the park, wonderful views. Sorry to read about your dogs cancer, she did incredibly well and looks so healthy.
Thanks Sarah. She has haemangiosarcoma which I think means she will get another tumour some time soon and that will be time up but we just try to give her as good a life as we can mean time. She's had her spleen removed but hat doesn't affect her too much.
by AnnieMacD » Tue Sep 02, 2014 7:22 pm
by litljortindan » Tue Sep 02, 2014 8:11 pm
AnnieMacD wrote:Fabulous photos and your little dog is so precious. She seems to be carrying the wisdom of the ages - you just don't know what they know. Made me cry that one I'm sure she loves the hills and good luck to you (humans) and her.
Thanks Annie. On the few occasions we've been walking together I've been struck by how much time Bracken spends taking in the views, or at least that's what it looks like she's doing. The vet said she might not survive her last op. but she was up and running a week later so hopefully got a few more months.
by Huff_n_Puff » Fri Sep 05, 2014 9:12 pm
by gammy leg walker » Fri Sep 05, 2014 9:23 pm
by litljortindan » Sun Sep 07, 2014 11:38 am
Huff_n_Puff wrote:Your photos really bring out the drama of this hill - they're lovely. Great to see Bracken out and enjoying the day she certainly seems to have stamina - and she looks like a great companion. Very wise to curl up and rest when you can
Yes, Sgor Gaoith a lot more dramatic and grand than expected.
We've only had Bracken for a year and a half but she's been great to have around and very good company on the occasional hill.
by litljortindan » Sun Sep 07, 2014 11:41 am
gammy leg walker wrote:Lost for words a special friend you have there.
Thanks. She's a great wee dog -full of life, fun and personality.
by Silverhill » Mon Sep 08, 2014 9:48 pm
by rockhopper » Tue Sep 09, 2014 11:41 pm
by Beaner001 » Wed Sep 10, 2014 8:41 pm
by litljortindan » Sun Sep 14, 2014 1:45 am
Silverhill wrote:That’s not your average walk in the park with the dog. It looks like Bracken was taking you for a walk instead of the other way round! What a lovely dog and a great companion. It is clear that she’s got a great life with you, and she's making the most of it.
Thanks Silverhill. Yes, she does usually think she's pack leader!
by litljortindan » Sun Sep 14, 2014 1:47 am
rockhopper wrote:That looked most enjoyable for you both ! Great day for it and you got some nice views over Loch Eanaich - cheers
Yes, a great day and a memorable one.