Skip to main content

The Stalker Meets the Stalked............

When I started reading "The hills are stuffed with Swedish girls" last year I would never have guessed that ten months later I'd be standing at the top of the Devil's Staircase having a natter with the author.

It's been quite a year for Richard Happer. He publishes the humorous love story of three  blokes wandering the West Highland Way but before he knows it he's in the poo with Ordnance Survey. He came up with the  "Justice for Jonesy" theme to defend his book and it just seemed to set my imagination on overload with madcap ideas to get more publicity so I started sending them off to Richard, posting on the blog and generally blethering about it at every opportunity - probably just a wee bit OTT and the last thing that the poor bloke expected.

It all turned out OK as OS stopped being total jobsworths and dropped their legal action and Richard had managed to get a second edition for which he decided to have an unusual signing at the top of the Devil's Staircase. Well surprise, surprise that sent me onto imagination overload again and poor Richard was getting inundated with my witterings again. It's probably at this point I realised that my behaviour was verging on the obsessive stalker.

To say that I was a wee bit apprehensive about meeting Richard was an understatement, made all the worse by my Outdoorsmagic mates who were coming along to the signing also calling me a stalker. The bloke was a star and even when confronted by 5 larger than life characters all wanting their book signed in the typically Scottish mizzle he just kept smiling. He wasn't even phased when we were all wanting photos taken. I suppose that's the breaks when you're a media slave ;-)

One of the main things that I have taken away from this experience is just how committed you have to be to make your dream happen. Richard had told me how it had taken three years to write the book and when none of the mainstream publishers were interested, it was down to him and some mates to see what they could do. It's great that it has happened and hopefully this means we will get some more adventures from Fitch, Wentworth, Macrae and Jonesy.


  1. I met Hamish Brown last night at a book reading, he has written a book about three men walking the WHW. "Have you heard of another story about three men walking the West Highland Way, The Hills are Stuffed With Swedish Girls?" I asked. He hadn't but was intrigued, perhaps that will be another order!


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Salomon Mission GTX Boot

I've had these on a few times now and so far they are just what I've been after to get me through the winter for most of my days out. Salomon describe them as being perfect for "light hiking" - take that whatever way you want ;-) They come in at 1210g for the pair and feel fairly easy on the feet. They've handled saturated grassy stuff without me applying the famous arse plant (so far!!). They even seemed to be OK on rocky stuff too. Where I have been really impressed with them is how they handled the snow on Na Gruagaichan. It was hard enough that we were kicking steps. This was easy enough for Steve in his Scarpa SL's and Iain in his La Sportiva Nepals. Initially I followed their steps then decided to give it a go myself. I occasionally had to kick a couple of times on some of the really hard stuff, probably more down to my poor technique than the boot, but they managed well on the cover we had for the ascent. As my balance is rubbish I decided to apply


Creag Meagaidh has been on the to do list for so long. The past couple of years have seen us have to abort at least three attempts at the last minute because conditions weren't for us. So were we going to get it done this time................. YES  The weather bods said mostly dry with a risk of potential showers later in the day.  It was warm so even if it did rain it would be warm.  Off we set having smothered ourselves in factor 50 and Smidge. Warm they said.......... baking I said!!!! We had decided our ascent would be via Coire Ardair and The Window to ease us into the walk on a good path.  It felt more like a slow roasting.  It is a gorgeous walk out to Coire Ardair on a very good path but as soon as we were out of the forest the heat and humidity kicked in.  When we reached Lochan Coire Ardair there was only one thing on my mind, getting my boots off and getting in.  It was at this point I began having major doubts as to whether we would get this done. Bre

Ben Lomond

Storm Hannah tried to wreck the planned Craggy walk to Ben Lomond. Thankfully, she had moved off quickish to allow the walk to be rescheduled to Sunday.  For once wind was not going to be an issue, all the makings of a good hill day.  So off we trotted.  While there were only a few folk heading in the same direction as us, there seemed to be a constant stream coming down Ptarmigan.  I suspect this is a result of the route description in Walk Highlands.  My body was having issues at moving at anything more than snail pace, earning me the title of Pace Setter of the Day for keeping us at a steady 1.9km/hr.  I have to thank the gang for being super patient on what was a longer than anticipated ascent of Ptarmigan.  We had some Ptarmigan Ridge virgins in our midst, some requiring reassurance from Steve "trust me" Morley. Plus Quote of the Day 1 from Carol "so where's this ridge we're doing?" ( said at approx 700m on said ridge ) We eventually ma