Petestack Blog

4 January 2015

Last of the missed deletions

Filed under: Cycling,Walking — admin @ 11:41 am

While I’ve always regarded the Tops as part of the Munro game, I’d struggle to say exactly when the deleted summits became a non-negotiable part of my agenda. Pretty sure they were marked on the ‘3000 Plus’ wallchart I had as a student and kept for some years to record what I’d done, but that eventually got outdated through changes to subsequent editions and replaced by my custom digital mapping system. So perhaps it was when I first got the ‘Munros and Tops’ and ‘Corbetts’ spreadsheets from The Database of British and Irish hills, but I could certainly name hills going back a number of years where I was consciously visiting the deleted tops. Which occasionally resulted in the equally conscious decision to leave some outliers for another day (those skipped in 2010 and mopped up on 7 August this year being in that category), but annoyingly also in some easy-to-include but inconvenient-to-leave ones that just, well, got missed (like Ceann Garbh ‘old position’ and Beinn Gharbh in 2008).

Now I’d already had a pretty decent Christmas holidays on the hill with a day in the Cairngorms and the four-day North-West trip, but how about just one more day to go back for Beinn Gharbh to mop up the last outstanding deletion on a hill I’d already climbed? So, with a stunning Saturday forecast, that’s where I went yesterday, and what an effort for such a trivial summit! Except that, trivial as Beinn Gharbh may be on the scale of prominent or intrinsically-significant peaks, getting it done is psychologically probably the moment that my ‘endgame’ 601-top completion becomes truly endgame. A long, long traipse up and down Glen Bruar with the track too icy to cycle far, but you don’t know how much I wanted to colour that wee square!


So what about this bike and the icy track? When I’d done the ‘Ring of Tarf’ four Munros and two Corbetts (fortuitously picking up the deleted Munro Tops on Carn a’ Chalmain and An Sgarsoch but missing Beinn Gharbh) in 2008 with Noel Williams and a friend whose name might have been Dave but was actually Tim, they’d had bikes and I hadn’t. So we’d gone in via Glen Tilt, I’d run what they’d cycled (up to Forest Lodge) and I knew darn well how helpful bikes were for accessing remote hills on good tracks. So had the bike in the van yesterday hoping to find the long track from Calvine over to Glen Bruar and up to Bruar Lodge at least partially rideable, and was fooled into taking it by a pair setting off with bikes, ice axes and the same obvious objective (Beinn Dearg) just as I arrived. But then spied them again ahead walking without bikes where the clear track turned largely icy pretty well at the top of the first big hill (yes, the one you could walk up quicker!), quickly abandoned mine too and just had to buckle down to a frustratingly long plod on foot… my fault when the ride back down would be glorious in the right conditions, but you know how much I wanted to colour that wee square?

Apart from that it was a good day. Chilly, but overall probably the crispest and clearest of a Christmas holiday that’s given me six good hill days and effectively halved the required workload (from twelve days to six) to complete that Munro’s Tables all-time list. :-)

2015-01-03glenbruar1 2015-01-03glenbruar2

2015-01-03glenbruar3 2015-01-03glenbruar4

2015-01-03bruarlodge1 2015-01-03bruarlodge2

2015-01-03beinnaghlo 2015-01-03bruarlodge3

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