Stuc a' Chroin and Ben Vorich

Stuc a' Chroin and Ben Vorich

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Tuesday 9 September - a simple trip

"The old brig spanning the Cairnwell Burn below the rocky snout of Sron na Gaoithe leads to nowhere except the past" (Robert Smith)

Returning from a day on the heights we have often enjoyed a stop in the sun by this bridge - the Seann Spittal Bridge - where long ago a hospice (refuge) provided shelter for travellers using the Monega Pass. We would use part of the Monega on our return, but for the moment we were heading east to Carn an Tuirc.

Something has always managed to get in the way of a visit to Loch Kander or rather, I always let something get in the way: shooting, other plans; weather. Maybe it's the feeling that I want to leave something unseen, not done; imagined; for 'next time'; something to think about doing, to talk about doing.

The tablelands were deserted save for mountain hares and a few sheep. We exchanged greetings with an aspiring Munroist who rushed off for Tolmount and Tom Buidhe; two elderly walkers seemed to have vanished without trace. I descended somewhat reluctantly to the lip of the corrie, half hoping that Loch Kander would remain hidden from this particular spot; if so I would explore no further. Always leave something to come back for. But there it lay, quiet and still.

From Cairn of Claise we followed the rim of Garbh-choire and joined the Monega Pass path down to Sron na Gaoithe and its quartzite cairn. The late afternoon sunshine was strong and at the 'old brig' we paused, enjoyed it, imagined the travellers of the past then strolled back to base.

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