Saturday, January 19, 2008

Cruach Ardrain Hike

Now I know what you're thinking... why haven't I been blogging lately? Not for lack of content nor time... like most people with an essentially pointless blog, sometimes I just don't get around to writing anything. Oh well. Anyway...
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Last weekend I went on a hike up Cruach Ardrain. The weather was absolutely horrible. The wind gusts were enough to knock me over if I didn't hit the ground and dig into the snow. It rained the whole way up, with the rain coming in sideways. I had a rain cover for my bag, but it kept blowing off, leaving the interior to get soaked. The air temp was above 0 C, which was nice but also meant that the snow was melting, creating rivers of ice water under the snow that filled the inside of my boots again and again. I was ignorant to the weather that morning so the socks I wore were too light. My feet froze... not quite past the point of loosing feeling in them, but still quite uncomfortable. My entire body was soaked to the bone with either rain or sweat. I was grumpy before we hit the summit, but on the way down my morale improved greatly by sliding down the hills on my butt on the way down. Plus by that point the rain let up, and we were on the backside of the mountain so the wind died down a lot.

Basically I got my ass kicked by the mountain and the weather. I wasn't in great shape to begin with, and the weather really got to me. But I was determined to take it to the top (not that I could have turned around at all, it was white-out conditions by the time we got into the cloud cover, and I'd probably get lost on my own!). But I learned some key lessons for next time, although knowing my luck I'll pack all sorts of extra stuff and it'll be a sunny day. Oh well, better safe than sorry.

I'm glad I went, and I certainly learned to bring better stuff next time. Which should be a couple of weeks from now, up Ben Lawers.

My few photos from the trip can be found here (click the link). The camera I brought (Canon G7) got pretty wet, but still worked fine. I guess it can take a bit of moisture. Thats good to know!


Jenn & Owen said...

There are still some of us keeping an eye on your "Education" over there. Next time you have the chance to brew for fun (as opposed to tiresome graduate education) I strongly reccomend you try a recipe that came out in the last WHN but one. Mark made this thing called, "The Hulk".

Two words: dangerously drinkable.

Especially for a beer at 12% ABV.


headlessbob said...

Heh, ouch. I might need to hone my skills on more marketable beer for my practice (if I ever get a chance!)