Sunday 26 July 2009

Bal Mawr at Breakfast

We arrived at around 8.30 and set about finding a spot to park the car. Waited for what seemed like forever for Paul to finish faffing but we were soon on our way.

We headed straight past the Half Moon pub at Llanthony (which felt odd) and headed up the overgrown and wild looking path up to Bal Mawr. We've walked and camped these parts once before but with the light fading fast it took us a moment to locate our spot.

As we rounded the ridge we managed to surprise some wild horses and their young foal who at one stage looked as though they might run at us. Fortunately for me Paul is slower than me so I had a plan if things got nasty!

We found our break in the heather, pitched and got the food on as the light faded to the west. At one point I noticed a single light rising really fast against the opposite ridge and we were quite unsure as to what could ascend a hill that fast. Moments later as we stood to work out what the hell was going on, the flickering light left the ridge and carried straight on skyward until it faded into the night. Baffled, we just stood looking at each other until suddenly there were about 20 more all setting off from what we though was Llanthony Priory. We finally worked out that they were Chinese Lanterns and not sheep carrying lanterns! We sat and chatted outside til around 1am making the most of the lightest of breezes and the clear starry sky.

I woke this morning at a very leisurely 7.15am which is very unlike me. The pitch isn't particularly comfy so I can only thank Glenlivet for that. The sound of light rain on the tent is all I needed to keep me inside for a while longer. Paul, I think, is unconscious and so I'll take great pleasure in waking him in a mo with the old angry farmer routine. The plan is to head south along the ridge to Bal Bach and then descend through the forest to Cwmyoy for lunch and a pint. All being well we're thinking about then heading back north and the Offas Dyke Path before descending back down to Llanthony. Now though, nature calls but I'll send this when I get a bloody signal!

Friday 24 July 2009

Getting set for the Brecons

Man, its been a long week and made worse by this evening's affairs. Fitting an integrated fridge freezer isn't as trouble free as it looks!

Not to worry though as Paul and I are grabbing a cheeky night in the Brecon Beacons tomorrow. Despite not feeling on top form I am really looking forward to it and the weather doesn't look too bad either.

I'll be giving the new phone a chance to impress while we're there and hoping to be able use it with gay abandon with the impressive battery life.

We booked our flights this week for the coast to coast walk in September. A 6 day crossing from Evanton to Ullapool awaits and it's all starting to feel real now. Unlike the original plan, this is going to be self supported, with no planned stops for serviced luxuries and a bit of flexibility in the route and mileage to make the most of bits we like. To say I'm excited would be sarcastic expressionism of untold measures. Crikey!

Well I shall be packing tomorrow morning for an early evening departure, so more tales from the hill then...

Saturday 18 July 2009

Posting to Blogger from the E71

Well I guess that gives the game away about my new phone!

I'm just testing whether Wavelog causes the same issue with the pictures I upload as it does on the N82. Only one way to find out...

Friday 17 July 2009

Back and Busy


I’m now back from my summer hols, rested (or at least I was until I went back to work) and eager to get into the hills. Its funny but even though I love going on holiday, there's something about watching Paul carbonising food to his Jetboil that I just can't seem to shake!

Other bloggers seem to have been quite prolific since I’ve been away so I’ve had some catching up to do on the reading front. Uncle Bob has been busy in his disco box and I was delighted to see the first few TGO Challenge podcasts coming through on my phone.

The first job on my return was to seam seal my eVent mitts from Mountain Laurel Designs and when I walked through the door from the airport Ron had sent the free replacement LightSnow Gaiters too. All good stuff.

I’m hoping to risk a night in the Peak District this Saturday but work has been so hectic I’ve not had chance to check the weather yet so its only pencilled in at the mo.

Paul and I have been planning a coast to coast trip in September, following a very similar route to James off of Blogpackingbongos, travelling from Evanton in the east to Ullapool in the west. Some of the recent purchases have been in preparation for this but there are a couple of bits still to sort out. I've been hunting down a 2009 Mariposa Plus in Medium but everywhere (including Gossamer Gear) seem to be out until August - bad times!

I've just ordered a new phone too which I hav e high hopes for. Its still a Nokia but with a few tricks to make it a bit more versatile with a better battery too. It still weighs nothing at 126g (Nokia's quoted figure) and I'll reveal all when it arrives.

I've still got a few things to write up like the last trip up to Coniston with Paul and also my review of ViewRanger mapping software for mobile phones.....