My Favourite Mountain Photie

I have seen and indeed taken a lot of photies of mountains and the one that has always caught my imagination the most is Fay Godwin‘s Meall Mor.

It’s a familiar sight as you travel west through Glen Coe and this shot captures the hill looking dramatic beyond its height. It’s also now historical as the road layout and markings changed long ago and the original visitor centre can be spied to the right by the trees.
I liked the old visitor centre, but what the hell do I know.

Unlike many outdoor shots it puts me right there beside the camera and that’s why I like having it around, it’s the only mountain photie I have on a wall at home.
I often wonder how long she waiting for the cloud behind her to line up just right to get the foreground in the shade or it she pulled over and ran out with the camera because it just right when she was passing.

Her stuff is wonderful and should be sought out and viewed by all.

MM

Elliot Brown Canford 202-004

Not so long ago I was all excited about a GPS watch which was super accurate and dead useful. Fast forward to now and on every trip to the hills there’s a queue of kit waiting to get charged in the truck on the way there – watch, headtorch, phone, iPod, battery charger for all the above… I’m actually a bit fed up with it all.
So when I got asked to review an Elliot Brown watch I started to see the possibilities of simple time keeping once again.

It’s not light, but it’s a tough bugger both externally and internally and essentially waterproof for what I’ll be doing with it. The big size made me think I’d made a mistake but ten minutes later it felt quite at home on my wrist and I’ve hardly had it back off the past couple of months.
The big face makes for great visibility, even without my glasses on and the webbing strap is comfy and looks to be wearing well.

More on this later, but the simplicity has made this an instant friendly face.

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Silent Running

I was meant to be somewhere else but the retro truck couldn’t hack the road and the day was bleeding away into the fresh snow.

Ooh, what a horrible analogy.

Anyway, the Arrochar Alps saved the day once again. The car parks were full, the tops teeming with life, but a few folks always head for the “other” places and I joined them.

Awesome.

I’m enjoyin’ masel

The week’s ran away from me a wee bit. But it has been punctuated by a bunch of colourful moments.

Winter’s been late arriving down here where all the people are, but it’s making up for it.

Visiting the Lang Craigs in the truck bridges the gap between down there and up there and it’s those rear wheels that need spikes, not my feet.

Die Kreuzen

Didn’t work, my cold’s till here so I’m back to natural rather than supernatural remedies. First bug I’ve caught in ages and its timing was perfect, screwing up some perfect weather with nothing on my agenda but a will to go and enjoy it.

Still, I did catch some riverside views on the way back from chemist.

Rock n Roll.

Walkhighlands Winter Warmness Review

My latest Walkhighlands review is up here. Good timing this one given the weather and there’s some ready good bits of kit in there.
What’s been a little annoying is unlike the waterproofs review a few of the jackets really suffered from individual niggles that would be deal breakers for me, but maybe not everyone? Always a tricky one as reviews are a mix of fact and opinion.
Some of the jackets have had a kicking, that Berghaus one had been on test the longest and has seen joy and tears while the TNF jacket’s big size has seen it layered over other kit and saving me while digging up forestry nonsense the Kilpatricks in sleety horror. It’s muddy if you look close.
Anyway, they all be seen some more on here I dare say.

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Sold my sole

I’m casting a spell to get rid of this bloody cough. After me…

Ti fo tuo teg ot tog ev’uoy ti otni teg ot tnaw uoy fi, ti fo tuo teg ot tog ev’uoy ti otni teg ot tnaw uoy fi, ti fo tuo teg ot tog ev’uoy ti otni teg ot tnaw uoy fi…

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Continental

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Joycee’s motor, which was my motor and now subtly but firmly adopted by the wife, needed new tyres, four of them. Through my watering eyes I took my plastic card back and was glad at least that the girls would now be safer on the road.

The gravelly throat and wheezing had kept me on the couch for a couple of days but the paracetamol loosened off the vocal chords  enough for me to agree to giving the motor a wee run to see how it felt. Holly was at Granny’s and not shifting, or indeed even contemplating putting on anything but her pyjamas’s on during this frosty day.
A quick spin up to Luss and grabbing a cuppa was the plan. The motor was running smooth, the old tyres apart from having a couple of slow punctures really had made for a rough ride. The road was good, we’ll keep on for a bit.
The sun was getting low, the snow was glowing pink and orange, the music was good and the miles just disappeared. It got dark as we ate in the Glen Coe cafe, sat by the window grinning back at each other.

A new day but like the old days.

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(Slight Return)

I was standing by the truck as the cloud decided not to shift leaving the sunlight playing on the lower slopes further down the loch.
I had my binoculars, I was looking at fence lines and gates, for once not in my patch but someone else’s. The cloud ribboned around the high crags and summits, ice clung to every contour on the rock and I could see hunched figures making slow progress among them.
I took another mouthful of hot coffee and felt a little tug at the heartstrings, it wasn’t playing a tune as such, maybe just some tuning up.
With the tail sliding out I left the dirt and headed back to the tarmac. It needs a little more time in the oven I told myself, I’ll come back later.

Night night

Stick on Side Two

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The last gig of the year is done and the (concrete) dust has settled. Being in the band has been a total joy, there’s been moments, with five folk stuck together like that there’s bound to be, but the music makes me glad from my weather-beaten head to my merino comforted toes.
The gig kept me away from the snow, but it was no contest, hills are easier to get onto than a stage. I’m happy to prioritise this way round, you never know when it’ll all go tits-up so I’ll enjoy it while I can.
No more live shows for a while, we’re recording first and when that’s done we’ll see. I love recording, I love winging it while the tape’s rolling and I know that attitude will freak the rest of the band out.
I’m sure they’ll be fine once their nerves settle.

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There’s some great shot here from the gig. The snappers are eindp.co.uk and click and pray  and they both know their stuff, worth going to have a look.

Talking of photies, the new LX7 is taking a little bedding in, but we’ll get there. The rainbow frames the Lang Craigs sculpture and the retro pickup just nice.
Pity I was up to my waist in mud while I was taking those.

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Walkhighlands Winter Gear Review

My latest Walkhighlands review is up here.

Some really good kit in this one and it was a joy putting it together. There will be more seen of the kit in action over the next few months, as much as it pains me to scrape such a pretty selection of anodizing.
There’s a Petzl ice axe exclusive, plenty more cool hardware, a selection nice but sometime not obvious bits and pieces, a Ventile jacket and the first of a host of new test kit from Rab.

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TwoMetresDeep – More Gigs

The TwoMetresDeep gig last week at the Lucky Break was great, played a new song, jammed like bastards for way too long on Rainbow Drops, accidentally (really) played a Sabbath cover and generally had a fine time.
Another couple coming up. Next week we’re playing a short acoustic set at the Artisan Centre in Dumbarton on Friday 4th. The show’s free entry, bring-a-bottle, runs from 1900 til 2200 or later no doubt and there’s another diverse bunch of artists on too. It sounds a bit like a 60s “Gathering”, but it’ll be a joy I’m sure and our songs lend themselves to acoustic versions. Christ, am I getting old?
No.
Glasgow on the 13th at Shadow Central for a fiver I think and it’ll be a heavy set we play as it’s a rock crowd in there. Magic, I’ll be all fuzz and flying v’s.

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