Walking 1004.9 miles from John O'Groats to Lands end in aid of Accommodation Concern! (starts august 3rd 2014)

Monday, 11 August 2014

Day-10 Bertha shows us!

What a night! fighting to keep dry, keep the tent from blowing away and trying to sleep... Didn't get much of the last plenty of the other two!
Hurricane Bertha was really putting us to the test, extremely heavy rain and winds up to 100 miles an hour made this a trip into survival not just an adventure, but stubborn gets me through most stuff, and this was something I can do, so packing everything away wet was not just optional, off the hill and finding a safe place to relaunch the trek was the order of the day, although not easily done in the high winds we did get away with some kind of order, just walking now proves difficult the wind behind isn't so bad you just lean back into it and keep going, where the track led across the flow of the wind is where It gets hard throwing you around and threatening to throw you on the floor at any moment.
Like this we pass loch Vaich where the mountains to either side are white with water gushing down into the valley and so on to flood the lower parts of the Glen. At Strathvaich lodge the river is swollen and churning white/brown where it hasn't already broken it's banks, splashing through this until black bridge where Bertha finally kicks us out the valley.
A bit of road walking past an old hotel and into forestry commission wood's soggy but under cover from the wind, a few miles of this till lunch where we shelter under a tree perched on a dry but uncomfortable rock while I heat some noodles and give Alfie ham and other treats.
From here we leave the woods aiming for Garve which we reach in his time and get a room at the hotel here, the room is soon converted into a drying room with my entire kit splayed around the room! At least we'll be starting in good order again tomorrow.

Day-9 positive pictures only!

Title will become obvious.....
Woke up to the most beautiful day, not a cloud in sight! Sunlight on the mountains around us and on the road as we headed along Strath Carron, butterflies skitting around and wrens hoping from post to post!
Great views of the rocky river Carron the photo was taken from a rusty old bridge near a building marked on the map as a school.
Waking into the woods of Amat where red squirrels live allegedly... None about, the sky clouds over pleasant still, up and around a hill for Dinner with a view from the track down Glean Mor. A really nice view point!, then we head down and it starts going wrong! The grey clouds have started to shower us, (probably needed!). Walking along a section marked in gaelic 'Abhain a Ghlinne Mhor' I translate this with zero knowledge of gaelic to mean 'abandoned hope! midges moor' and boy was it! Normally if you stop for a rest they attack, not here tho this breed hang around in gangs mugging you as you walk along!, even in the rain the persistent b@$t@rds!!!!!! Think they annoyed me!
Eventually the rain increased to such a level they dispersed, across the bridge at Deanich lodge and a quick break inside the generator house of said lodge (they have no mains connection) to avoid the deluge which didn't have the grace to stop! We pushed soggily on past Meall Chorainn (cor rain?  pretty accurate!) a great lump of a hill to descend in increasing weather towards loch Vaich where we gave up trying to find a good pitch and have curled up still soggy but fed for the night.
Hours later it's still raining and windy think this must be the promised tail end of hurricane Bertha
Well she knows what she can do!!! ;-)