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Flying on the bike, in the wind & with a giant wasp!

Flying on the bike, in the wind & with a giant wasp!


Postby PathfinderPaul » Wed Aug 15, 2018 5:25 pm

Route description: Ben Avon via Gleann an-Slugain

Munros included on this walk: Ben Avon

Date walked: 31/07/2018

Time taken: 8.43 hours

Distance: 34.41 km

Ascent: 1201m

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Ben Avon July.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts


The Ponyexpress and I have had our eye on this one & its neighbour Beinn a Bhuide for some time as now I have reached 70 I wanted to have done all the highest Munros, as we only had 3 left in the top 20. We only planned to do this one as we thought we would like to savour the other from the lovely ride up Glen Quoich .We had a good forecast, although it might be windy at the summit, as we were to find out :roll:
The trusty hybrid bikes were ready to go as we rode out of the carpark at Keiloch. A very good track & ride , we soon reached the last of the forest.
ImageUntitled by Paul Howard, on Flickr
ImageIMG_1475 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
The drought meant that the crossing of any burns was a doddle.
ImageIMG_1479 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
ImageUntitled by Paul Howard, on Flickr
We left the bikes & soon reached the "ruin", some had taken their bikes up that high, but we didn't think it was worth the effort, on the way out we changed our minds :( Once in the upper valley by Beinn a Bhuide we had a great path which Ponyexpress really enjoyed :)
ImageDSCF3003 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
Great views from here.

ImageDSCF3004 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
Before we left for the last valley going up to the Sneck it was time for first lunch & the venison pie from the butchers in Braemar, highly recommended :clap:
ImageDSCF3007 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
Again the valley walk up to the Sneck was very enjoyable and a good path, although we began to notice the increase in the wind.
ImageDSCF3009 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
There was a bit of buffeting on the Ponyexpress :o
ImageIMG_1482 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
Finally the tors at the Sneck came into view and then we hit the wind :shock:
ImageDSCF3010 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
Ponyexpress had to hold onto me as we made our way up onto the plateau, it was hard work. Others overtook us and you can see the effect of the wind on them.
ImageDSCF3011 by Paul Howard, on Flickr

On the plateau it was slightly easier , but must have been 40-50 mph winds, as we lurched towards the summit tor.
ImageDSCF3012 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
Many were crawling like ants across the tor to get to the high point, not risking standing in the wind :shock: I followed and got as high as I could, without being blown off completely.
ImageDSCF3015 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
ImageDSCF3016 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
We finally retreated with others to the sheltered side of the tor, where a second lunch was started, but just as I was about to sit down, Ponyexpress shouted , "don't sit down", & she pointed :o I was about to sit on a very large insect which we thought might be a hornet :crazy: A website later told us it was a giant wood wasp and what we thought was a sting was an ovipositor for the female to lay her eggs in the bark of the trees down below. The wind must have blown it off course. It is totally harmless. :lol:
ImageIMG_1485 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
Some of our new friends took a photo of us, Ponyexpress doesn't normally wear a headcovering but this was to stop her hair covering her eyes :crazy:
ImageIMG_1489 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
WE were soon on our way back to the Sneck as parted from our new friends as they braved the wind to go onto Beinn a Bhuide.
ImageDSCF3017 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
Once we were back down to valley we stopped for third lunch and enjoyed the loss of the wind and the great path :D
ImageDSCF3006 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
We then recovered the bikes and had the scary ride back :shock: But it is a shame to use the brakes, but last year Ponyexpress came off so we have learnt our lesson, we don't bounce quite so well :crazy:
Once back at the carpark we had only just begun to get the bikes back in the car that our new friends showed up having bagged the second top 8) They were keen as one had only got 6 Munros left and the other 4. They are planning to do the last one together. A great day out with lots of excitement :clap:
ImageIMG_1491 by Paul Howard, on Flickr
PathfinderPaul
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 11
Munros:217   Corbetts:1
Hewitts:123
Wainwrights:73   
Joined: Jul 25, 2014
Location: Biddulph, Staffs Moorlands

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