Heaval, Barra

6 02 2012

Quite a short report, this one…

Evening Fishing Boat off Barra

Quite a few years ago now, I was particularly bad with my asthma (I’ve hopefully got it completely under control now I’ve got properly fit) and was on my annual trip back to the Outer Hebrides. I stayed overnight in Oban before catching the ferry from there the next day for Lochboisdale on South Uist. I didn’t have a great night as my chest was starting to play up but didn’t realise I was heading for a particularly nasty attack. Read the rest of this entry »

Ben More Uist & The Mini Striding Edge (& Ben Corodale)

1 02 2012

During one of my holiday visits back to Uist, I was lying in bed reading a book by the famous Seton Gordon who had written a chapter on walking in the mountains of South Uist. In it, to my surprise, he mentioned the huge craggy face of Ben More – “From the top of the hill a great buttress dropped sheer. Very grim did it seem”. Prior to that I had imagined that the gentle hills there had no such thing as huge crags! I decided that the next day, if it was fine, I had to go and see for myself. Read the rest of this entry »

Hecla, South Uist

27 01 2012

For years, while living on the Uists in the 70s, I was confused by the name Hecla for a mountain. For a start it didn’t end in ‘val’ (or more properly, in Gaelic, ‘bhal’) and for seconds, it just looked really strange! It was years later before I read something on mountains in Iceland and realised it was actually a Gaelicised Norse word and would originally have been called ‘Hekla’ but that the Gaels had substituted a letter c for the k. Now that made far more sense.

Hecla & Ben Tarbert Read the rest of this entry »

The Fossil Tree, Mull

2 12 2011

About 5 Easters ago, Richard and I joined up with my then walking group, The Open University Mountaineering Society, for a trip to Mull over the long weekend. We were hoping to hill-walk but the weather wasn’t really favourable as it was an early March Easter and there were bitterly cold northerly gales. Read the rest of this entry »

Ben More Mull & A’ Chioch

26 11 2011

March 2008

Mull mountains – Ben More range in snow behind…

In March 2008, Richard and I decided to take a trip to Mull to polish off the single Munro there and also scout out what other great hills were on the island – quite a few beauties! Our hotel on Mull was the Glenforsa Log Cabin Hotel near Salen – somewhere I previously stayed at in the 70s. It’s right next to the Mull airstrip (grass) and the hotel was full every night with flying types, all of whom had flown in with their own aircraft – even one couple with a helicopter! Read the rest of this entry »

First Visit to the Cuillin – 2nd Peak – Bruach na Frithe

25 05 2011

Thu 19 May 2011 Added my photos at end of post now I’ve got them back – Richard’s are the ones within the post…

Thursday was our leaving day from Skye and we frustratingly still had only one Cuillin peak under our belts due to the awful prevailing weather. However, the day dawned fine and we could see from the B&B window that the Cuillin were nearly ‘out’ – it was still extremely windy however. I told Richard we really ought to try to at least bag Bruach na Frithe – he was quite keen as he didn’t really want to leave the island with just the one summit bagged either, and he isn’t even a bagger. Read the rest of this entry »

First Visit to the Cuillin – Sgurr na Banachdich

25 05 2011

Tue 17 May 2011 – photos now added…

After a fruitless first day on Skye on the Monday, when we gave up waiting for the torrential rain to stop (we weren’t keen on the high winds either) and went to the drier north to walk in the stunning Quiraing, on Tuesday morning we decided we had to make a start on the dreaded Cuillin – that’s what we’d come to Skye for after all. Read the rest of this entry »

Eaval (Eabhal) North Uist

6 04 2011

While I was living on the Outer Hebrides whilst in the Army, I was much too lazy to walk anywhere, especially not up the hills. It was only when I came back on holiday every year and had become interested in mountains that I decided it was time to do some of the ones on the Uists after having lived amongst them for so long and ignored them!

The one hill everyone walked, even the lazy Army folks on the islands, was Eaval (1,100ft) on North Uist. I decided to redo this hill along with a cute little strangely shaped one next to it called Burrival which is just short of 500 feet but quite a fierce little hill!
Read the rest of this entry »

Uneasy Walking to the Tip of South Uist

6 04 2011
A particularly remote and desolate walk on South Uist is to visit the very southern tip by way of the Glendale hills or the glen track. There is a beautiful small hill there called Ru Melvick. I used to walk the glen track on most of my visits back to the Uists but, for several reasons, never really felt at ease… One was that you were in a valley completely surrounded by hills on four sides where nobody ever goes nowadays – the track is an old one which used to go to the ruined sheiling down at Hartavagh Bay. The other reason was the sheiling…

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