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Seeking solace on the faery hill

Seeking solace on the faery hill


Postby Jaxter » Tue Nov 22, 2016 8:12 pm

Route description: Schiehallion

Munros included on this walk: Schiehallion

Date walked: 21/11/2016

Time taken: 6 hours

Distance: 10 km

Ascent: 731m

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I first saw Schiehallion several years ago from Kinloch Rannoch when my friend Scott and I played a concert there. At the time it was a beautiful white cone in the cold evening light but at that moment I knew that I would climb it.

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I had encountered Schiehallion in a different way several years earlier when a friend at college wrote a piece of music for me named after it. So I had decided that Schiehallion was a special mountain. I had once thought I would like to compleat on it but rethought that in favour of the West coast. However I was adamant that I would only climb this hill on a sunny, blue-sky, snowy day. In other words, a perfect day :thumbup:



After a terrible night’s sleep my 5am alarm was not welcome and I actually snoozed it briefly. But I crawled out my warm cocoon and was away at 5.45; it was thick fog and dark all the way to Crieff. However, as I drove further into the wild it began to get light; tiredness made way for excitement and I could see an inversion in the valley below and stars in the sky above. There was more and more snow as I progressed and then suddenly there were mountains ahead :D

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At least it was obvious which way to go!
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The last bit of road was single track and not treated and it was here that I discovered a new sport – car skiing, where one spins the car and crashes into a bank of snow ending up facing the wrong way…. :shock: Once I had changed my pants... :lol: I righted myself and I went steeply downhill (trying not to think about returning) and found the car park where I booted up and set off up the obvious path towards the hill.

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Trialling a new hat - thoughts? :D
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It was incredibly cold and I stopped very soon to add my down jacket and an extra pair of gloves. But it was a beautiful morning and I could feel all the stress and life problems just melting away – I felt better than I had in weeks. It’s incredible that no matter how bad a day, week, month or even year you’re having, spending time on the hills makes everything else completely irrelevant and forgotten. Absolute freedom :wink:

Soon the sun started to rise about the hills covering the snow in a lovely red glow
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And then I made a new profile picture....
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The route was simple and I followed the path up the hill with a huge grin on my face :D As I climbed higher, I could see the down the valley, an inversion over Loch Tummel and red glow over the Cairngorms.

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The good thing about coming out on a Monday was that the route was clear all the way up as it had clearly been a busy weekend. But today it was deserted and I had the mountain to myself :D I tried to take my time to enjoy the amazing weather and take in the views. And also because I was still under my physio's orders to be careful :lol:

I could see what looked like ski tracks coming down the path; looked like someone had found a quick way down over the weekend :shock: :lol:
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I also met some wildlife; snow rabbits and what I thought was probably a grouse, then these Ptarmigans who kindly stood still for me to photograph them…
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Loch Tummel
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Reaching the ridge all too quickly I stopped for some more photos but it was a bit too cold to stand around for long - there was a bitter North-Easterly wind.

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I was trying to be arty with a cairn...cannae decide which I prefer...
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Pressing on for the summit I still hadn’t seen another soul but the way was still clear – I think this bit is probably easier in snow as the boulders looked like ankle breakers without the soft white cushion :shock:

Arriving at the top I was able to see for miles in every direction and I leapt in the air with excitement :D It was really early so I spent ages taking photos before settling down to eat something. It was only 11.30 but I was cold so out came the soup – cuppa soup has never tasted so good!

The standard pose
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Glencoe
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Nevis and the Mamores
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Lawers range
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Loch Tummel and Beinn a'Ghlo
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A while later as I was sitting gazing across Rannoch Moor towards Glencoe I was joined by another human – the first I had seen all day! We sat and chatted for a while – he had been up many times before but said that this was his best weather yet. I had struck lucky first time :D

After a while he headed off and I was left to my summit. I scrambled around over some of the rocks at the top and had some Irn Bru (a top tip from Martin!)

Crazy cauliflower snow
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Rannoch Moor towards Glencoe
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Zoomed Buachaille Etive Mor
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But eventually I started to get really cold – the wind was picking up and it was freezing (met office said -12 :shock: ) so as I'd been on the summit about 2 hours I figured I ought to head down. I was in no hurry and took my time all the way down, stopping to make a snow angel :lol:

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Looking back
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The path had iced up in places so I was even less dignified than usual, but didn’t actually end up on my backside :lol:

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Stopping for lots of photos I also saw a deer but I was too noisy so it ran away.

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Back at the car I reflected on the day – as a mountain, Schiehallion isn’t much to write home about; it’s an out-and-back route which I dislike, no scrambling, a very easy climb. It’s how it looks from afar that makes it so iconic, and the views from it that makes it such a special hill. Definitely one for a good day :D 8)

Heading back up the road I negotiated the steep hill without incident – despite being still in the shade it seemed to be less icy. I got the tunes back on and made my way home, but not without stopping for a good few photos…

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And a detour up a hill on the outskirts of Muthil as I saw the sky beginning to turn red!

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The hills really are wonderfully therapeutic :D
Last edited by Jaxter on Tue Nov 22, 2016 10:00 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Jaxter
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby ere1 » Tue Nov 22, 2016 8:25 pm

Nice pics Jackie! :clap:
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby dav2930 » Tue Nov 22, 2016 10:40 pm

Lovely report and cracking photos of what looked to be a perfect winter's day!

Jaxter wrote: But it was a beautiful morning and I could feel all the stress and life problems just melting away – I felt better than I had in weeks. It’s incredible that no matter how bad a day, week, month or even year you’re having, spending time on the hills makes everything else completely irrelevant and forgotten. Absolute freedom :wink:

I so completely identify with that! :clap:
Sometimes I think everything else is just a big pile of sh** :lol:
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby jupe1407 » Tue Nov 22, 2016 11:12 pm

Excellent trip rep and a pretty damn neat video Jaxter :clap:

There's no greater therapy than being out in the hills, especially when it's not busy and you have absolutely ideal conditions. On the plus side, whatever else happens in 2016, you'll always have the memory of the Gorton Bothy rendition of Don McLean's "American Pie" :lol: :shock:
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby Collaciotach » Tue Nov 22, 2016 11:33 pm

Grand stuff lassie :clap: :clap:
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby Jaxter » Tue Nov 22, 2016 11:37 pm

ere1 wrote:Nice pics Jackie! :clap:

Thankyou :D :D



dav2930 wrote:Lovely report and cracking photos of what looked to be a perfect winter's day!

Jaxter wrote: But it was a beautiful morning and I could feel all the stress and life problems just melting away – I felt better than I had in weeks. It’s incredible that no matter how bad a day, week, month or even year you’re having, spending time on the hills makes everything else completely irrelevant and forgotten. Absolute freedom :wink:

I so completely identify with that! :clap:
Sometimes I think everything else is just a big pile of sh** :lol:

Yup...a day on the hills fixes everything....for a while :lol:



jupe1407 wrote:Excellent trip rep and a pretty damn neat video Jaxter :clap:

There's no greater therapy than being out in the hills, especially when it's not busy and you have absolutely ideal conditions. On the plus side, whatever else happens in 2016, you'll always have the memory of the Gorton Bothy rendition of Don McLean's "American Pie" :lol: :shock:

Thanks :D :D
Haha that is very true, unforgettable :lol: :lol:



Collaciotach wrote:Grand stuff lassie :clap: :clap:

Thanks :D :D
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby Alteknacker » Tue Nov 22, 2016 11:55 pm

Reading this report, I was going to quote back exactly the same paragraph of your report as Dav2930 - but went off to do something, and in the meantime..... :)

I imagine that most of the folk motivated to read reports on WH will completely relate to that sentiment. Surely, surely, it nourishes the spirit like nothing else; and when you get days like that - well, just WOW.

Great stuff - when you get weather like that, pictures say it all. Words can't even begin to capture the sheer adrenalin flood that results from being out in the hills when it's so brilliant.

And good to see that your rehab continues apace :thumbup: . Sadly I still have a month before I'm out of my sling :( . But when I do get out, it's gonnah be SOOOOOO good!
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby Jaxter » Wed Nov 23, 2016 3:19 pm

Alteknacker wrote:Reading this report, I was going to quote back exactly the same paragraph of your report as Dav2930 - but went off to do something, and in the meantime..... :)

I imagine that most of the folk motivated to read reports on WH will completely relate to that sentiment. Surely, surely, it nourishes the spirit like nothing else; and when you get days like that - well, just WOW.

Great stuff - when you get weather like that, pictures say it all. Words can't even begin to capture the sheer adrenalin flood that results from being out in the hills when it's so brilliant.

And good to see that your rehab continues apace :thumbup: . Sadly I still have a month before I'm out of my sling :( . But when I do get out, it's gonnah be SOOOOOO good!

It's just wonderful isn't it :D :D
Good luck with the rest of your rehab, it'll be worth the wait :thumbup:
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby BlackPanther » Wed Nov 23, 2016 4:29 pm

Alteknacker wrote:I imagine that most of the folk motivated to read reports on WH will completely relate to that sentiment.


Absolutely agree. Being "out there" on a day like last Sunday is like... release would probably be the best word. It's a different world where you are miles away from the c***p of everyday life. Personally, I feel I need days like that regularly, to charge my inner batteries :D

Hopefully we'll get more bright weather in the coming winter!
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby Doghouse103 » Wed Nov 23, 2016 6:46 pm

Great photo's and video Jackie, feeling jealous :-)
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby Andymac75 » Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:22 pm

Awesome day.

Very nice video .and score :wink: .

You put a lot of work into it :clap:

Awesome day to be on a hill.a slightly clearer day than Sunday.
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby Cairngorm creeper » Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:51 pm

Your report and photo's capture the peace and the magic of Schiehallion so perfectly. :clap:
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby perr » Wed Nov 23, 2016 11:25 pm

Many thanks for your lovely report and for sharing your thoughts
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby Jaxter » Thu Nov 24, 2016 12:01 am

BlackPanther wrote:
Alteknacker wrote:I imagine that most of the folk motivated to read reports on WH will completely relate to that sentiment.


Absolutely agree. Being "out there" on a day like last Sunday is like... release would probably be the best word. It's a different world where you are miles away from the c***p of everyday life. Personally, I feel I need days like that regularly, to charge my inner batteries :D

Hopefully we'll get more bright weather in the coming winter!

Definitely :D :D



Doghouse103 wrote:Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Thanks - better views than Sgritheall eh :lol:


Andymac75 wrote:Awesome day.

Very nice video .and score :wink: .

You put a lot of work into it :clap:

Awesome day to be on a hill.a slightly clearer day than Sunday.

Thankyou - yes it was perfect :D



Cairngorm creeper wrote:Your report and photo's capture the peace and the magic of Schiehallion so perfectly. :clap:

Thankyou - yes it is a special place isn't it :D



perr wrote:Many thanks for your lovely report and for sharing your thoughts

Thankyou :D
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Re: Seeking solace on the faery hill

Postby ancancha » Thu Nov 24, 2016 11:06 pm

Escaping from the worldly cares is definitely a big part of it :!: Guess that's why we still enjoy it even in the clag :lol:
Still snow, blue skies and great views make it so much sweeter :wink:
Nice hat 8)
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