Marhofn 171.09 - May 2007

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Baglogs: Upper Hall:

Baglog: James Gordon (+58=1534)

Bagging was piecemeal and opportunistic for the first half of the year, with Sidhean na Raplaich the highlight - a February morning with frost on the moor and ice on the basalt cliffs. The Lammermuirs and Peel Fell were tidied up on the way to Newcastle for the Norway ferry. After reaching the 1500 mark (Broughton Heights and its neighbours during the Edinburgh Festival), the pace quickened and the remaining clusters in Galloway, Argyll and the Borders were picked off. Mostly I had good weather, although Criffel was a disappointment in mist - this must be a good view, judging by the number of hills it is visible from. There are so many good wee hills in the south-west with sea views - Beneraird in October sun and wind and Cruach Lusach amid roaring stags are just two of them. Coraddie and the hills west of Loch Fyne were done in snow, when everything higher and inland was in mist. A badger by moonlight at 500m on Ellson Fell was a surprise - as was I to it.

Two long December days took in Creag Scalabsdale and the empty country to the east (Morven beats even Suilven for 360-degree effrontery), then the two Borrobol tops in wind and light and shadow and sleet. Snow buntings everywhere, with Armine and Klibreck holding back the worst of the showers. The Marilyn-bagging year (and the English set) finished in Shighty Clag on the way down to Sheffield. Stock fences eased navigation in featureless terrain on the join of two OS sheets.

As of 6 January the total was 1537, with the British mainland completed on Cnoc Damh, after Meall Liath Choire. A fine, mild day, with all the far north in view. The usual post-completion dilemma of what to do next solved itself: a night in a bothy and a ten-hour day over Seana Bhraigh and the Beinn Dearg group, with occasional snow flurries and just enough on the ground to make it feel wintry.

Cruach Lusach: "There is a most astounding view to be had from this hill... The land and sea are superbly mixed up. I think altogether it is about the finest view I know, and that is saying a good deal."
Colin B. Phillip, Scottish Mountaineering Club Journal Volume 1 Number 3, September 1890

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