10th to 12th December 2004 - Roy Bridge
16 of us arrived in the usual dribs and drabs at Aite Cruinichidh bunkhouse,
near Roy Bridge, with the first test being negotiation of the acute left turn
from the main road on arrival from the east. This was a comfortable and
well-appointed bunkhouse, with spacious bedrooms, plenty of ablution facilities,
and a sauna. The whole place was pine cladded, and the only improvement might be
a few cushioned seats in the kitchen/living room area. Also the one radiator
wasn't always working. However, with these minor reservations, this venue was
ideal for us, and no doubt will be a popular choice for future weekends.
With a weather forecast that was set fair for the weekend, walking plans were
honed to perfection during the convivial Friday evening. Our amateur flyweight
pugilist Victoria alluded to her punishing training regime, 4 gym sessions a
week with a punch bag and a 17 stone trainer, revealing how she can bring a man
down with a single blow. Albert looked quizzical, knowing perhaps as I do that
all it takes is a few choice words over a careless remark made yesterday, last
week, a decade ago, makes no difference. The Druid was entertained by 4 blondes
from Arran, but wisely left the best one for the dorm. For once Richard's "its
only 9%" Vinho Verde was eclipsed by Kenny's macho 11.5% Portuguese rose.
Alison, clearly counting her units (3.1 exactly) readily used up her daily
allocation with an orgasmic, sorry I mean organic West Country cider choice.
Dawn was indeed set fair, with clear skies and a ground frost, but annoying
amounts of clag built up during the day leading to mixed fortunes. I was lucky
on the Aonachs, but Cathy, Hywel and Alison didn't get views from nearby
Corbetts Cruach Innse and Sgurr Innse. Richard broke with tradition and was off
the hill in daylight. Accompanied by Iain, they caught the early morning train
to Corrour, and walked out to Tulloch over the remote Graham Creag Gheanach and
the Easains, an impressive endeavour in December. Fortunately, Victoria and a
fully laden Fraser (in last minute preparation for his Aconcagua trip) proudly
carried forward the club custom and arrived safely back from the Grey Corries
well after dark. Nobody was worried beyond amber concern. Big hills ain't they!
Kenny also went into Corrour by bike, and met a former EMC member on the
platform for the train out that he hadn't seen since his wedding day 26 years
ago. No not Kenny silly! Alan and Anne's choice was the twin peaks of Stob Coire
Sgriodain and Chno Dearg on the east side of Loch Treig, while Albert and Judith
headed for Glen Roy and the Corbett Beinn Iaruinn. Keith was also in Glen Roy,
and chose the Corbett Carn Dearg, followed by another Corbett Carn Dearg. With
boredom setting in he decided not to go for the third Carn Dearg Corbett. Our
gaelic speaking ancestors were obviously having a bad day when they named these
hills. Bill and Eileen had a day on the Cuillin. That's Carn Chuilinn by Fort
Augustus. Maybe they went for Teallach on Sunday? That's Beinn, not An.
Saturday night was even more jovial, with the beer and wine flowing,
mountains of pasta consumed, and Richard and Cathy fully relaxed from the sauna.
Highlights included "Wild Bill Coppock's" useful tips, such as how to put on a
yeti gaiter without it folding over (patent BC plc inventions inc.) and how to
continue cycling with a shredded inner tube. Sorry, I lost the plot with this
one but there seems to be a rubber theme. Tryptophan induced dreams were
guaranteed following the usual late night cheese orgy.
The warm front that came in on Saturday night meant a change back to mild
cloudy conditions. As I was away early I don't know what the day's choices
were, but indications pointed to Glen Roy as a popular choice for those who
hadn't been there on Saturday. All in all, an excellent weekend.