12th to 14th March 2004 - The Smiddy, Glen Etive
It was back to basics for this meet. The smiddy hut is a cosy 2 roomed
job but in a spectacular situation at the bottom of Glen etive.
We were all up nice and early on Saturday morning courtesy of Gillian's
half past six wake up call. Those that had not stirred (including Gillian)
after ten minutes of beep, beep, beep, beep, beep were soon awake by the
dulcet and rather loud tones of K Robb "For F...s sake turn it off". It
turned out Gillian was still operating in Norwegian time after coming back
from a skiing trip in Norway the previous weekend - she must have got some
strange looks at work that week coming in an hour early every day.
This enabled us to give the new members a totally wrong impression of the
club with an unprecedented early start. Most of us were walking before 9am
in a mass attack on Ben Starav and the 2 adjoining munros. Unfortunately the
cloud was down on the tops for most of the day but it was a good long winter
walk, especially on the ridge traverse. There were some interesting
decisions as to when crampons should be put on and taken off. At one point
half of us had crampons on and smirked as the others skittered down the icy
rocks whilst the crampon off brigade got their revenge by storming past us
on the ice/grass combinations. There was also some tricky navigation and
towards the end of the day we managed a partial descent down the wrong spur
into the wrong glen. Fortunately we and the GPS realised the mistake in
time. At this point Bill B was down to one eye, having lost a lens from his
glasses and it seemed to have affected his judgment because he carried on
much further down the wrong spur on the basis that we may as well just carry
on now that we had started.
At least we got some views when the clouds cleared at about 4pm. Everyone
else walked individually and Lesley and Jessie conquered Colditz Corbett.
The razor wire has been removed but there are still 4 locked gates to get over.
We had a very sociable evening. The new folk commented that they could
see that you would have to come on all the meets otherwise you just get
talked about at the ones you miss. Are we that transparent?
We had a nice long lie on Sunday since we were back in Scottish time.
It was wet, windy and miserable so anybody that headed back to Edinburgh
made a good decision. Tim, Tom, Kenny and I "enjoyed" a very wet ascent
of Beinn Trilleachan.