The Angry Corrie 3: Sep-Oct 1991
Out and About:
Eventually, just at the point where I was starting to question the sanity of what I was trying to do, and as often seems the case with this type of 'walk', an area of younger, lower trees materialised, and beyond them the purple-brown heather dome of Cruach Tairbeirt's unexpectedly shapely summit.
I forced the last group of trees by way of a trickling, stony burn, then rested before pushing on up the final slopes. Here a remarkably good path wound its way through the best of the ground: a sad, disused relic of the pre-afforestation era.
Almost ninety minutes after leaving the road - much longer than a glance at the map would suggest, but not bad given the circumstances - I reached the summit trig point. The only disappointment was the cloud still being down too low for the view to be of much interest - although Loch Lomond showed as two separate lochs, as it does from the Ben opposite.
The north end of the summit proved as shapely as had the south - altogether a neat little hill - and I kept to the steep nose of the ridge in hope of finding a direct descent to Glen Loin. This worked unexpectedly well, as the whole eastern flank of the glen was home to deciduous rather than coniferous woodland. I followed the bed of a burn until this became a little gorge, then took to the bluebell-blurred slopes off to one side. Here the sun broke through, giving a yellow-green lushness to the early summer growth and making the final section - down to a grassy meadow and out, past cows, along a track to Arrochar - a real delight.
The usual line of cars overflowed from the Cobbler car park at the head of Loch Long, but today I wouldn't have swapped hills with any of them - not even when the great rock peak finally came clear as I sat drinking tea in the Pit Stop Diner.
Things were better all round now: even the lift home came quickly. This was provided by a horsy-type young man returning home early from a weekend at his girlfriend's ancestral home on Loch Fyne, having been greeted that morning by the laird-father with the words "I had rather hoped to have found you gone by now"! The embarrassed girlfriend had recommended he head back to Harrogate by way of Dunoon and the Clyde ferry, but it was much to my advantage that his annoyance was such that he forgot this advice, and drove round the long way instead.