3 - Friday
Finally! The Munro Marathon is here! Well.... almost. I have not quite gone yet and we are in the middle of packing. I have taken over The Crannog at The Bustard, God Unlimiteds residential centre where I live, so I can check, double check, and triple check, that I have everything I am going to need over the next 3 weeks, including the kitchen sink.
Oh yeah....... don't forget the dog!
So... panning from left to right, I have the table of snacks for the car, bits I have not put into the right section yet, the maps (will probably be needing them) and emergency dog rations aka Bonios! Just behind the table is the pile of clothing needed for R and R days (rest and re-organisation) which will either be with the support crew in the first week, or at a campsite in the second and third week.
As we continue along, we come to the campsite camping section..... hence the ginormous 5 man tent! Oh and the extra 3 man tent! I am definitely not carrying those up the mountain. So... why bother taking them? Because I will need more space to dry out kit and recover, and for Isla to recover, at the campsites. In the last week, fellow therapist and friend will be joining me in case Isla needs a rest, and that is when we need the 5 star (sorry... man) tent. But it will feel like 5 star after a few weeks of squeezing into the compact and bijoux wild country Zephyros 1 !
Then we get to the exciting kit - everything I need to take up the Munros. First aid kit, water bottles, camelbak, waterproofs (mine and the dogs!), sleeping bag, 1 man tent, Jetboil stove, spork (never go Mountaineering without a spork) survival bag, dog harness, dog pack, walking poles, hat, gloves, buff, spare layer, spare layer, spare layer, gaiters, compass, miniature notebook and pencil, small multi-tool, paracord bracelet (in case of emergencies)....oh, and the food and all the other stuff on the kit list I have not packed yet! All of that will add up to approximately 20-24kg.
2 - Saturday
Pack the car. That excellently fun game of "car tetris" which men feel they can always do way better than ladies (as if!). I will need to do this either before or after finishing a wedding cake and attending the wedding of a friend! No need to panic.... so far everything is ahead of schedule and we are running on time - amazing really. Until Isla walks down the corridor with her pink, bed time teddy, reminding me we have to pack him too.... oh and a bean bag for the campsites, because they are so comfy!
Move out men! Sorry ... woman and dog! We aim to be on the road by 8am so we can get to just north of Glasgow, just in time for dinner with Sarah Dubique and her poodle Jess - aka support crew for the first week. It will take about 8 hours if the traffic is good, and I am so glad my friend Stuart Webb has loaned me his TomTom. I am usually a stickler for using Road Maps, and I can navigate rather well. But, holding onto the steering wheel whilst map reading is frowned upon and it is going to be a long trip.
GO! - Monday - first day on the mountains.
Time to suit up and march upon the hills. My first Munro is Ben Vorlich in the Trossachs area. But...
I was looking at a map the other day and revising the route, and thought, maybe I could just go and do Ben Lomond first, which would involve a little drive, then come up and do Ben Vorlich and wild camp before taking Ben Vane, Beinn Ime and Beinn Narnain...... ?
I mean, why not!? I would then be climbing the Southern Most Munro and possibly take my Munro count up to 40.
Thank you to everyone who has loaned me kit - I will try very hard to use it well, not abuse it, and bring it back in one piece.
I am unsure how much I will be able to blog, tweet or facebook whilst I complete this mission. I will keep you posted..... when I can.....
PS.... only a little bit excited!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!