TGOC2011 – Day 2 – Gleann Fhiodhaig – Loch Monar

What a miserable day.  I delayed packing up my tent for as long as I could but it rained all night and all day with only an occasional let up when the rain turned to drizzle.  I didn’t bother blogging as I was just too tired and miserable!

The first bright spot in the day was when I found this lovely little hut near Glenuaig Lodge.  It was dry and out of the wind.  It had heating, lighting and furniture and a bothy book which showed that I’d not been the first Challenger to pass that way.  In fact, three people had slept in there the previous night.  I had a rest, ate my apple and sharpened the bothy pencil.

I knew I would have to cross the River Meig and had a rough plan for the best place to do it.  When I got there, I found that although the river was wide, it was quite shallow so I marched across.  I’ve learned that the best approach is just to go for it and try not to notice the cold!  I didn’t bother changing into my Crocs; I mean, there was no way my Inov-8 Terrocs and socks could get any wetter, so no point in trying to keep them dry.

It was now about 12:30 and I hadn’t been lost yet so, of course, that had to change.  I spent about an hour arguing with my compass, map and GPS (which I only tend to turn on when I want an argument) about which gap in the hills contained the Allt an Amise.  Eventually I decided it was time to read the map properly and actually look around me rather than just plodding aimlessly over the boggy ground.  It was then absolutely obvious where I needed to go.

My vetter had advised me that I wouldn’t find any decent camping pitches along the North side of Loch Monar so I knew I’d have to keep going until after Monar Lodge.  However, I wasn’t convinced I’d find anything there, either, so the last couple of hours walking weren’t particularly enjoyable as my feet were wet, the rain was being blown into my face and I didn’t have the prospect of a good pitch to look forward to.

Past the lodge, I spoke to two Challengers who were pitching their tents on what I can only describe as a patch of gravel.  They looked completely fed up and, in a perverse way, this cheered me up a bit.

I found a reasonable-ish pitch about 3km past Monar Lodge but took ages to warm up as I really was chilled to the bone.

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