Diving: is that all that there is?

clip_image002The day today: got up at 7.30am, breakfast and packed and on the road by 9am. Got to White Corries by 10.30am and set off up the chair lift by 11am, then walking up Meall a’Buiridh by 11.30am. The snow was wonderful: never too icy, at times very deep but in all cases encouraging. Not too exposed (the climb was up the rather broad north east ridge), but the top was stunning. Just dropped away to the south. Wonderful view when the cloud cleared. 1.30pm.

Then back down inside an hour, running on powder snow: such fun, so much easier than interminable hummocks and ditches guaranteed to trip and confuse, and, most of all, wrench my left knee.

Back in the car by 3.30pm and a quick trip down Glen Etive.

Beautiful. Wild. Remote. Clouds getting darker, blacker. Mountains rising in solid lumps of green then white. The road only goes to the northern end of the loch. And the car park was rather desolate: heads of lochs are always rather miserable affairs I find. Always seems untidy, forgotten about, even derelict. Perhaps it’s the way the things wash up. Perhaps it’s the distinct DMS in the air (lots of weed hanging around too). So we didn’t hang around. Got back into the car and headed back up towards Rannoch and Glen Coe. (saw a majestic stag with antlers and all that on the way down and back).

At the top of Rannoch Moor the snow got going. By the time we made it to the lip of the glen it was black and white TV all around. The dropping down into the glen, first slush then wet slush then rain, rain…

But the hostel was warm and welcoming and, even though the IT is steep (£3/h), it’s all very wholesome. But, of course, there’s the usual ‘amazing bullshitting man’ in residence. We started our meal at 6pm. He has one of those infuriating voices that everyone can hear, but that nobody wants to recognise. And he was holding forth about diving. Ocean, aqua lung stuff, as far as everyone could hear. Twenty minutes to get this far down, always got a particular take on wherever his mates had been, and always his way was the better, to the detriment of their’s. I went back down to walk around the kitchen two hours later. He was still holding forth. Some were impaling themselves on spears. Others hanging themselves, still others shutting their heads in the door. Shut Up Man!

Bed time soon. Then tomorrow morning he’ll still be there, I guess. Perhaps I should ask him what he thinks about diving. Maybe he’ll have a few words for me.