After a weekend of childish shenanigans and drunken debauchery down in Glasgow cheering on the mighty Aberdeen fc to their first sniff of success this century, I decided it would be a good idea to partake in a spot of pre TGO Challenge training, great idea at the time, 4 hours sleep is plenty, hangovers are for the weak, 15kg is nothing and absolutely nothing will wipe this smile from my face.......... Aye right you are then.......
To be fair it was a great day to be on and around mithers tap, the mildest winter in living memory seems to be moving seamlessly into spring (long may it continue), and a monday morning jaunt was just the ticket, only a handful of cars in the car park promised for a quiet day, the standard route up mithers tap is probably only a couple of miles at the most, I needed a bit more exercise so plotted a more vague roundabout route of approx 5 1/2, 6 miles.
Being overly cocky and not quite clear in the head I followed a really nice path for 3/4 of a mile, a good steep section, just what i needed really, a cure for all ills, until I realised I should have left it 3/4s of a mile back, ok two full water bottles and a super sized snickers later, it was back down and off up the really quite obvious spur that id breezed past 30 minutes previously.
After finally clearing the lower forestation the marked path became a bit of a walk in the heather, eventually it petered out completely, leaving me the choice of going back and following a better path, or continuing on, knowing that there would be a main path about 250/300yds above me on the ridge, I decided to bash on, through thigh high heather and covered/hidden boulders, a couple of falls (not great with a 15kg bergan on) and about a gallon of guiness tasting sweat later I finally made it to the path, great views but I was fairly puggled.
Good views out over Aberdeenshire mind
The top and the rain
View towards, inverurie, newmacher, home and bed
Mean and moody
The obligatory summit shot
Nearly there, I'll never drink again
Actually a very satisfying wander that hopefully helps in the build up to some sort of decent level of fitness