Thursday, 28 July 2011

The Far North At Its Absolute Best

I was asked recently to imagine that I had an overseas visitor staying with me and I had one day to take that visitor up one Scottish mountain of my choice. Which mountain would it be? It led to an interesting discussion, albeit with no firm conclusion. Possible candidates ranged from Sgurr Alasdair, Liathach, An Teallach, Beinn Eighe, Ben Nevis, Suilven and several others that I can't recall just now.

Roll forward a couple of weeks and we're up in Caithness for a few days. The weather in the far north was better than the rest of Scotland for most of that week and the Tuesday and Wednesday in particular were absolutely stunning. We decided to nip over the border into Sutherland for those two days and visit a hill that has been high on my list for many a year. Ben Loyal.

Wow, did we pick the right day! This was the north of Scotland at its absolute cracking best. Warm, but with no hint of heat haze. North Rona, which is 84 miles away, was visible with the naked eye & binoculars made it even more impressive to look at. We also found an interesting descent route off the west side of the hill just to add a bit more pleasure to an already top quality day.

A much sought after Corbett visited on one of the best days of the year. Possibly the best day of the year. And when that hypothetical overseas visitor comes to stay I might just take him/her up to Ben Loyal to show them the delights of a perfectly formed and beautiful Scottish mountain.

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