Today: 18.4 miles
Total so far: 1406.7 miles
Percentage Completed: 84.2%
Early morning, Wanda in Gleann Gaorsaic
Away at a sensible time, I was soon following the faint track to Loch Lon Mhurchaidh and to the precipice. Glen Elchaig's southern wall is a formidable beast, and my route was designed to avoid the Falls of Glomach as I had been up them with Lord Elpus the previous year on the Challenge and had no intention of going down them as going up them was terrifying enough. So I was doing a bit of a detour, heading down Allt Coire Easaich, hoping for a gentler descent...
Looking down into Glen Elchaig
There are a few stacked waterfalls marked on the 1:50 map, so maybe that should have given me an inkling. The path suddenly takes you down the nose of a very narrow, very steep ridge, straight down the side of the waterfalls in stacked hairpins no more than two metres in each direction.
Now most people climb up into Gleann Gaorsaic up the Falls of Glomach, so maybe that's why that path is fairly well maintained. This one had great chunks of it eaten away by landslips, leaving me faced with the occasional descent down loose mud and rocks on my backside to regain the old path the other side of the slip some ten metres below.
Okay - it's only like this for ten minutes or so but they were the most careful ten minutes of my walking life! I was incredibly thankful that my pack was nice and small and cinched firmly in to my body - the idea of a big unwieldy pack going down there would be a nightmare.
I made it to the bottom to take a rest at Carnach, then bimbled down the Glen to Killilan for a spot of lunch (indeed a spot as I had miscalculated the food at Ft Aggie and was running out!)
Then I was following the book (North to the Cape) to Strathcarron: And what an excellent route it was too, if a trifle boggy. I made heavy weather of it, perhaps because I felt quite tired (Possibly lack of food? - an after-thought) but made it to the bealach for great views back to Glen Ling in the good weather.
On the way down I bumped into a very smiley chap - Farshid - who had been up to a bothy and had been bagging Munros in the clouds earlier in the day. Amazingly within a couple of minutes of conversation we found a mutual friend in Jean Turner (a Challenger who was also in the Royal College of Surgeons with Farshid)
We took each others pictures with the Torridon mountains as a backdrop and then Farshid was on his way on his mountain bike and I skipped down to Attadale and then on to Strathcarron for a few well earned pints of Directors before the usual grind of washing shirts, socks and pants! I feel like Toad in his Washerwoman disguise! My fingers are more wrinkly than my feet!