Snow is coming, it’ll be on the tops in a day or two. Maybe not quite like Ben Cruachan above seen about ten years ago, but give it a few weeks.
This makes my heart sing. Not like the soaring angelic choir accompanied by harps and those big long trumpets that sensitive mountain folk hear. No, I hear the first big G chord chord from Black Sabbath. And getting my kit ready feels more like I’m a Colonial Marine getting ready to take the drop ship down to LV-426, rather than the current putting on a pair of trainers and going out the door.
I love winter and all the challenges, discomfort, difficulties and utter joy it brings. Crampons, gloves, a Buff over your face, digging a snow hole just to eat your lunch in, walking out in the dark, cold and tired. In your mind already tasting that hot dinner at the Real Food Cafe and warming your hands on your pint of coffee as you peer through the steamed up windows at all the other cars heading South, were they skiing, or walking, climbing? It was a good day to be out. Your nose is running now because you’re in the warm air, cheeks hot and stiff from the cold wind on the ridge. Still far from home, but those miles will pass quickly as your memory darts back to every step you kicked into the snow on the ascent, the sound of it, the feel of the low sun on your face as you climbed up onto the col and peered across to the horizon over sea of frozen white waves and you remember how you stood there transfixed with a big grin on your face, ice axe swinging at your side.
These days will be ours again soon. I cannot wait to get out there. While we’re looking up waiting for the flakes, here’s that G chord to get us in the mood.