A New Year bothy tour was once the highlight of our year but as we get older our ability to love the cold and damp diminishes somewhat 🙂 The Mountain Bothies Assocoation ones are usually packed out so we go to lesser known ones nowadays for the odd Hogmanay trip.A small one in Perthshire was this years choice.We reckoned we`d get it to ourselves as it wasn`t well publicised and anyone who did know about it wouldn`t dream of going there in winter as it must rank as one of the coldest bothies in Scotland.!
Six of us met up at the road end and got packed just as the daylight faded….
Lack of daylight wasn`t really a problem as it was only about a three mile walk in along a pretty good track.In view of the fact that it was going to be a cold night we took the precaution of taking in a good load of coal.Gordon and Neil excelled themselves in this respect by carrying a whole bag each while the more mature section made do with one between the four of us 🙂 In addition to the usual winter paraphernalia,the coal,beer,whisky,wine,cake etc; ensured that the rucksacks were packed to the gunnels.As we suspected the bothy was empty on arrival.Two folk started immediately on the fire and another two went out to see if the ice on the loch could be broken for water while Bob and I busied ourselves with a can of beer and watched the proceedings.The ice on the loch proved to be more than a match for us so a frozen stream nearby was attacked instead.We needed this for the whisky 🙂
After dinner we settled down in front of the fire for a wee refreshment…
It`s a long night in winter in a bothy.Darkness falls at about 4.30 pm and when darkness falls then that means it`s time for a beer or two.As it was now only 6pm we had to pace ourselves to avoid the trap of being legless before the Bells at midnight.We`ve had years of practice at this however 🙂
Just before midnight Gordon produced a surprise…bottle of champagne and six champagne flutes out of his rucksack.Topped up the glasses and got ready to go outside to welcome in the New Year….
A fantastic canopy of stars kept us occupied for a while but the cold soon drove us back to the comfort of the fire where we continued for a few hours.All except Gavin that is who finds it very difficult to acquire the knack of pacing his intake….
Some of us had to be back in Glasgow for lunchtime on New Years Day so it was a 7am rise.
Dawn outside the bothy….
Walking back out to the cars….
Some of the guys went to do a hill or two while Bob.Gavin and I took our time going back home and stopped a few places here and there to take in the views like this one of Loch Tummel and Schiehallion…