Munro No 22 – Ben Vorlich

20 08 2013
the Munro Blagger strikes again...

the Munro Blagger strikes again…

After all the recent excitement of the launch and first official completion of the Big Hex Climbing Challenge (www.bighex.org), it was back to normal yesterday and some summit avoidance in my Munro Blagger persona – the whole reason this blog was initiated in the first place. For those of you uncertain of what Summit Avoidance is and what the Munro Blagger is, let me tell you.

Some time ago, a long time, on a trip to Corrie Bunkhouse on Arran with the Paisley Hillwalking club, we had made our way up onto the saddle at North Goatfell where we were taking a breather – I was breathing hard as hillwalking isn’t really my game. Our plan was to drop back down to the base of Cir Mhor to pick up the start of Sou’wester Slabs and Calibans Creep. While we rested, one of the older members of the club Leon, caught up with us and cheerily announced “only about a hundred feet to the top guys!”. We looked at him in disgust. “Bobby isn’t a ‘getting to the top’ kinda guy” said Eric. He was incredulous that we could get so close to the summit and NOT go to the top.

The “not getting to the top kinda guy” stuck, and it has now fully fledged into the Munro Blagger.

I am slowly working my way around the munros with a single purpose, to almost get to the top of all of them. Some people have asked me why I would even entertain an idea. Easy, nobody else has. And when you’ve seen one trig point at the top of a hill, you’ve seen them all.

From almost the top looking back towards Ben Lomond

From almost the top looking back towards Ben Lomond

So, yesterday I put my Munro Blagger head back on and set off to “not tick” one that has evaded me in the past – Ben Vorlich.

Peter had text me the previous night to say he was going somewhere with his dad with the intention of doing two Munros if I fancied it. With some work commitments early in the day and requirement for me to be back early to head to the studio to rehearse with the band, I declined. I opted to head somewhere closer and bag something quicker. And so it was around 10.00am I found myself parked at the cafe car park at Sloy Power Station on Loch Lomond getting ready to head up the single track road which leads to the start proper of the route to the summit. With work ongoing on the sub station further up the path, I was met with situation I have never experienced whilst walking into a hill in Scotland. I was met with a road sweeper traveling at 2 mph down the track towards me. Cleaning all the site debris and cattle shit as it went!

So I arrived at the part of the tarmac track where you depart and head upwards toward the top – the 4th electricity pylon down from the dam wall (marked with a small pile of stones). I headed on up.

After half an hour I was truly wondering why the hell i do this, after all I hate walking. So to take my mind off the mindless trudge, I started singing some of the songs which we would be practicing later tonight in the studio with band. It was a good way of memorising my lyrics and I was surprised how easily they came to me:

I wanted to write a song for you,

Like “Into my arms” or “A girl Like you”,

But the words that tumbled out were dark and blue,

I wanted to make the words convey,

All the love you give and the joy you share,

But you and I both know that its not true,

 

And Just my luck to find myself with a girl who’s place is on the shelf,

So self obsessed and vain that its not true,

And whats a guy supposed to do when he tries to find the words for you,

And “You’re so vain’s” been done and its all true,

 

So take it on the chin,

Some you lose and some you win,

And “You’re so vain’s” been done and its just you.

 

I wanted to make a case for you,

So all my friends could know for sure,

That they were wrong you’re just misunderstood,

But in trying hard to justify,

The place in my heart that you occupy,

It lead me to conclude that you’re no good.

 

Just my luck to find myself with a girl who’s place is on the shelf,

So self obsessed and vain that its not true,

And whats a guy supposed to do when he tries to find the words for you,

and “You’re so vain’s” been done and its just you,

 

So take it on the chin,

Some you lose and some you win,

And “You’re so vain’s” been done and its just you.

 

So that pretty much kept me going all the way up and the way back down too………… And sometimes the veiw was alright too.

From almost the top....the clouds rolling in...

From almost the top….the clouds rolling in…

So that’s 22 done now, I’ll be doing it at my own pace.

I’ll probably never complete them…..

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