Marhofn 38 - May 1999

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Hall Highs and Lows:

Alan Dawson

Unlike other years, the main highlights were relatively well-known hills, perhaps because they were saved for good-weather days. Quinag was great, though surprisingly busy, with a bonus of three easy Corbetts. The final Munro, Beinn Tarsuinn, was memorable too, as the rain stopped and mist lifted during the ascent. From the top there was no visible sign of human activity - no buildings, no tracks, no plantations, no other walkers. Damn cold though for June. By contrast the final Murdo, Meall nan Tarmachan South Top, was a dreich disappointment.

Of the smaller stuff, both Meall an Doirein and Meall Lochan a'Chleirich (13A) were great, as was Cruach nan Cuilean (19C). the whole of the Trotternish ridge (from Bioda Buidhe to Hartaval), and Biod an Athair (17A) with its trig point on the edge of a 300m cliff. Lowlight was Dundry Down, a stinking muddy tip, while Hegdon Hill was a non-event.

Toughest was undoubtedly the benign looking Meall Dubh (15A), in the bottomless snows of Easter. Progress was almost impossible at times, and came to a complete halt every half hour or so, as spring blizzards swept through, obliterating everything. Finding the highest point on the flat top wasn't that easy either.

Daftest moment of the year was returning from a day trip to Beinn Dearg (19A) and discovering it was only a SubMarilyn. Careless. Just as well Dun Leacainn was sneaked in too, with the help of some cunning route finding through the trees in the dusk.

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