Thursday, 3 February 2011

Climb every mountain?

Come on Gail! Oh come on, over here, COME ON, COME ON!!!

Look outside the window! All the snow is gone. It doesn't even feel cold. It must be nearly Spring.

And don't imagine I've forgotten what you promised last year. You absolutely promised that come Spring I would be allowed to climb a Munro.

[Readers, you know what a Munro is? A Scottish peak over 3000 ft high. There are 283 of them.  Between you and me, it's my ambition to 'bag' every single one, like boxer dog Kerry did a couple of years ago.]

So Gail, look, I've even found this book on your shelves. Called, yes you've guessed it, 'The Munros: The Scottish Mountaineering Club Hillwalkers Guide'.

Now what do I see here, scribbled this inside the book? A list? In your handwriting, Gail, if I'm not mistaken?

Mount Keen
Beinn Alligin
Sgor Gaoith
Stob Choire Claurigh
Stob Coire an Laoigh
Stob Coire Easain

Oh, is that so? Seriously? You're telling me that my predecessor Hamish the Westie in his younger days climbed each of those peaks on your list. All the way up to the top and him with such little legs?


So these Munros would be, like, no problem at all for an eager, fit and bouncy chap like me, eh?

What do you mean a fine line between 'bounciness' and 'recklessness' Gail? Oh, you're just saying that for the first time, perhaps we should try a nicely rounded Munro, not one of the one with jaggy edges and precipitous drops.

[I guess Gail is frightened of heights but doesn't want to admit it. I'll have to humour her for now.]

Well OK then. How about Ben Macdui? Looks good eh? Scotland's second highest mountain. Dramatic and imposing, yet suitably curvaceous...

Yes, that's the one for sure. What are we waiting for?


Oh what is it now?  Must we really wait for longer days too?


And now I am getting a lecture from Gail who has reached for another of her books* and is reading aloud from it:

'Beginners, not unnaturally...want the startling view, the horrid pinnacle - sips of beer and tea instead of milk. Yet often the mountain gives itself most completely when I have no destination, when I reach nowhere in particular, but have gone out merely to be with the mountain as one visits a friend with no intention but to be with him.'


*'The Living Mountain' by Nan Shepherd.


  1. Bertie - The days will soon be longer. Until then there's still the beach and if your lucky a trip to Dunnotar and the pub on the harbour.

  2. OH Bertie
    Yes, by all means you should be able to do it, If Hamish could then you can too!! Just keep at her and she will see your point!!


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  4. Bertie,
    It seems you already have (a) spring in your step. Be paitent and your time will come young pup.


  5. Now Bertie,in Scotland you do have to be cautious with the weather - especially setting off to climb a Munro......or two?
    We have snow again here this morning so we urge you to curb your youthful exuberance and take advice from Gail.
    Now we ourselves have ventured up a couple of Munros - Ben Ann being the easiest!
    It has to be said however that we frequently encounter obstacles for our very short legs - we anticipate that you will bounce over every obstacle that comes your way.
    Keep your head stuck in that book for now - the best climbs are always planned in advance.
    You will need to ensure emergency supplies are with you - so start packing your doggie bag.
    We look forward to hearing your of your first conquest and hope you plant a flag with a WFT on......well it seems only right!
    Your Adoring Aunties xxxx

  6. And you eager young man - we are sure we'll be reading about your adventures on a munro soon.

    Lilly, Piper, Carrleigh and Ruairi

  7. Be sure you pack a flashlight. I hear the fog can roll in like the dickens over there.


  8. Thinkin you're gonna need a really big bag Berti ;) Can't wait to see the photos of your first flag planting on the peak! You go dude!

    Waggin at ya,

  9. Come on must be a scared a heights
    Benny & Lily

  10. I hope you get to do it Bertie! But you has to wait for longer days, you know peoples eyesight not so good, and they get cold... You wouldn't want to get stuck up a munro would you?
    This year me and Mum and TNP is gonna try and walk round all the lakes in the lake district, that a much easier task. bol! We has done 3 so far.
    ~lickies, Ludo

  11. I'm sure it looks a walk in the park looking in the book, but climbing it is a hole new ball game!!!
    Gail will know when its safe;)
    See Yea George xxx

  12. We always have a laugh at "Marylin Munro(e)" known for her peaks as well!

    Bella was going to be named Macdui.

    Anyway, Bertie you make sure Gail takes lots of pictures when you FINALLY get to go, so we can go with you.

    XXXOOODaisy, kendra & Bella

  13. Bewtie
    You will soon be a whole yeaw old and I just know that you will someday climb those Munwos one by one..I have faith in you
    smoochie kisses