Escapism – One of the reasons I love the hills is the time is gives you to reflect and think about things that matter. On solo trips I feel I can reset mentally when out in the hills with the rhythm of one foot in front of the other and the crunch of snow a certain meditative state can be reached- and this has certainly been required recently with the hum drum of the rat race eating away at sleep an increasing anxiety levels. The Mountains weren’t calling – they were being prescribed.
A first proper dump of snow hit Scotland this November and some cracking high pressure systems have been settling in – a perfect combination in my eyes.
With good weather almost 90% certain (website % ;)) I had limited time. In fact the evening before I had nipped up a nearby hill to catch sunset – Ben Vrackie is a fine fine hill and feeds the chimp to a certain extent, but WANTED More! My prescription didn’t only say mountains but also an requirement for some photography….
Some pics from Vrackie the night before:
Similar to last year I decided I wanted to take some wintry sunrise shots and immediately my thoughts turned to Chrulaiste. My favourite Glencoe viewpoint and an absolute belter of a walk, I wasn’t too bothered when the alarm got me up before 4 AM! Last year (albeit a little later – was December) I headed on the same mission and had a memorable, first post op trip, up here. However a bank of cloud that provided a grand back drop later in the day prevented the glorious sunrise I was hoping for last year.
Things were looking better today though. Leaving the car around 0630am I had set my mind on trying to pick a spot on the southern slopes of Chrulaiste to try and capture the sun hitting the Buachaille’s slopes. Off I went and as always the steep start had me delayering, although it was fringing cold (-9.5 at points on the road up!). At this point I knew I had plenty of time so decided to try my hand at longer exposures and some night time shots down the glen. Glad I did as I think these shots are my favourite photos from the day out!
[url=https://flic.kr/p/Nh6FCg][img]https://c4.staticflickr.com/6/5728/30374584123_e510c994ce_b.jpg[/img][/url][url=https://flic.kr/p/Nh6FCg]Glencoe by night under a blanket of snow...[/url] by [url=https://www.flickr.com/photos/scotlandsmountains/]Scotland's Mountains[/url], on Flickr
Numb fingers and 15 minutes later I headed back on my mission to find a sunrise shot, which I eventually found with about half an hour to spare. This is usually good as it gives time to set the tripod up and get the gear ready etc etc, however today it meant star jumps and running on the spot to keep warm. It was Baltic. I even thought about packing up and heading further on just to keep warm , but I am glad I didn’t- got a smashing sunrise, I think the patience paid off ok.
A few photos were taken then I was back moving and generating heat (que the hot aches of sorts!). The camera stayed out and thanks to a spare battery kept warm in my jacket pocket, I was a happy snapper all the way back to the car and for a time my worries and stresses were forgotten.. Happy days these certainly are not but escaping to the hills and mountain therapy remedies the mind for a spell.
Some thoughts and reports from my outdoors activties...