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An Sgarsoch and Carn an Fhidhleir , bike and hike

PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2015 8:32 am
by tony.cee
I will start with this, those of you whom have done the route without the aid of a bike and lived to tell the tale are insane and must have the fitness of special forces jedi's. I had been eyeing up this route for a while but never fully committing due to work beconing or monsoons threatening, however, with the oil all but run out and oil companies budgets tighter than two coats of paint I have found myself with an abundance of free time and a worrying tolerance for beer and whisky, not to mention a far deeper knowledge of only fools and horses than I've ever had. So, I left aberdoom at 8am after some cocker spaniel logistics, she had to sit this one out due to her not having a bike. I arrived at linn of dee at around 0930, I threw the bike together and was on my way in a matter of minutes, no dithering, today was serious.... I made good progress with the bike and must have been at geldie lodge in just under 90 mins having spent some time crossing the geldie burn with the grace of a cow descending stairs. With one leg drookit all the way up to the intricates I made an attempt to dry off before following the path to Carn an Fhidhleir, the path was excellent and progress was a breeze before the path vanished, it was off piste heather slogging bog dodging joy until the first of the reeking weather arrived, which was going to be the theme of the day, wet/dry wet/dry wet/dry. There was nothing to write home about yet with the views making me wish I'd stayed in bed and watched only fools and horses, but a double rainbow made an appearance, but yet I couldn't muster the same enthusiasm for it as that fella on YouTube did, I was wet, I was miserable. I continued to drag my arse up towards the summit, heaven knows I'm miserable now, when the rain eased off affording me time to dry in the wind. Having read others reports on these hills, it was their remoteness that appealed to others, the sense of isolation or desperation, depending on how your day is goin I suppose. The summit cairn was reached, I acknowledged its existence before making a hasty retreat, there was absolutely nothing to see here with the top blanketed in cloud and drizzle. As I decended, the weather cleared up and I could pick a route up An Sgarsoch, it's a significant decent down before heading steeply back up but progress was steady. It's rained, it cleared, it rained, it cleared by the time I reached the summit it was relatively clear and dry, albeit windy with doomsday clouds fast approaching. I had a brief feed before heading down past scarsoch bheag. This section was rather horrific having chose the most direct route down to save time, the going was slow and boggy and in no time the heavens unleashed on me, saturating me for the last walking section of the day. Having reached geldie lodge, I wept as the bike came into sight and got on my way asap. Getting wet crossing the geldie burn was hardly an issue as I was already wetter than an otters pocket, I blasted towards linn of dee overtaking an raf typhoon in the process.... The rain had eased and I was back at linn of dee in 45mins only to enter what can only be described as a biblical plague of midges, the end of days stuff. I had to change, but in doing so, I invited battalions of midges into every nook and cranny on me which made for a very very unpleasant drive home with the windows open so to blast out the billions that had hitched a ride. A very damp day covering huge distances. Not a classic, but not the worst day on the hills I suppose. Rather terrible photos im afraid,

Re: An Sgarsoch and Carn an Fhidhleir , bike and hike

PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2015 10:42 am
by pollyh33
Loved this report Tony, it totally sums up the pain I felt on these hills :D :D :D

Strangely enough I didn't mind the river crossings, I've accepted that I'm pretty crap at them and just get the boots off and forge right through!

No what did it for me was the cycling part-ffs that path was atrocious!!! Giant sized stones and grassy troughs that cause the ejector seat on your bike to activate :crazy: :crazy:

As for the hills, not much to say about them other than the views (if you get them-luckily I did) are rather nifty. 8)

Re: An Sgarsoch and Carn an Fhidhleir , bike and hike

PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2015 11:04 am
by tony.cee
The hills truly are a love hate relationship. Thankfully my biking skills are of a level that I don't fall off often, those years of throwing myself off stairs and dirt jumps in my youth have paid dividends. I've a few pals who have yet to do these hills, I often accompany them on the ones I have done and the ones they have yet to. Not this time, they are on their own with a pat on the back and a few choice words of wisdom.