The best laid schemes o Mice an’ Men

I was on my own last weekend so planned to get out into the hills at some point.  I watched the forecast all week, predicting the east side of the country would as usual be the better side, and planned some Cairngorm Corbetts in.  As it was, by Friday the west side was forecast to be wall to wall sunshine, a light breeze and an almost 100% chance of cloud-free Munros!  Whereas the east would remain cloudy and dull. I leapt at the chance to go up to the north-west in these conditions and randomly looked up the Corbetts map on Walkhighlands.  I chose some Corbetts north of Inverness, mainly based on time to reach them from home – notably Carn Chuinneag for Saturday to promise tremendous west views over Assynt, with maybe Little Wyvis or Beinn a’ Chaisteil the next day.  I found the campsite at Tain was open (I hate trying to find a suitably remote ‘wild’ camping spot in the dark with the Bongo’s poor lights) so threw all my gear in the van and headed off on Friday straight after work. Yay!

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Glen Isla – Monamenach

I don’t know what I was thinking when I made a hair appointment 3 months ago for the middle of Saturday afternoon.  What a weekend wrecker!  Luckily Sunday was by far the finer day.  The Met Office forecast was full sun and low wind over the north and east but MWIS was forecasting winds of 45-50mph and likelihood of snow with appalling visibility for the Cairngorms / Southeastern Highlands and worse everywhere else.  Ever the optimist, I went with the Met Office forecast (but took lots of spare clothing just incase)!

I had a hard time making a decision this weekend.  Ally was working over the weekend and I really wanted to go off somewhere in the Bongo.  I looked at my options in the east for hills I hadn’t climbed yet.  I’m not averse to climbing the same hill again at all, but having climbed most of the Munros in the east / Cairngorms I wanted new routes and hills.  Plus, Cairngorms are generally a long walk in and there’s only so much daylight.  I noticed Monamenach, a Corbett in Glen Isla.  It seemed close but far enough to justify a one night trip, and also I’d never been to Glen Isla.

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