A constant battle, probably for everyone, is getting time away to enjoy the hills and not allowing it to affect family life! With two kids, I am constantly aware that weekends away in the mountains are weekends away from the kids. I must admit to feeling guilty when I am away at work all week and don't see the kids much, to then say - see ya - I'm off on an adventure!! Its a constant balancing act and I am lucky to also have a very understanding (non outdoorsy!!) better half! Sometimes the remedy is to take the kids with me, and my daughter who is nine has been up a few munros and been cragging to a few easy sport venues, but most of the time I am off with my friends - or on my own.
Something I have started more recently is the little "get aways" or microadventures. My disastrous first wild camp of the year (usually do these once every few years- see below video of being on a mountain in a storm - or felt like one anyhoos!!!) forced me into buying some half decent wild camping kit and this is what initiated the quick get away adventures.
Leaving in the afternoon or evening and camping out or staying in the back of the car for an extra early start has many great advantages. Firstly you get an early start and as such are usually first on the hill and get some solitude (good if you like that!!), secondly you get the best parts of the day (in my opinion) and can enjoy summit sunsets and sunrises, and most importantly leaving late and getting home early means more family time :)
Most recently I enjoyed a smash and grab munro wild camp. I left home at around 15.30 (earlier than usual but sun set is earlier) and was home in time to take my kids to a birthday bash at 09.30. I have done a few of these and the summer months are perfect as the nights are short:) This will probably be the last of these in a while as the winter comes in.
Before I stop my rambling, I also wanted to share another "quicky"- this time without the tent. I hadn't been out climbing for a while so the desire for some hands on action led me to a morning ascent of Curved ridge. It did involve an early start but once again I was back for the afternoon and spent it with the kids (gaining valuble brownie points lol). The video's below if interested... Just shows that if you can put the effort into getting up early enough thn the balancing act d jggling can be a little easier - however as Autumn envelopes us and winter approaches - I am not too sure this approach will work quiet so well!!!
Some thoughts and reports from my outdoors activties...