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10/10/10 10:10am 1010m

As far as whacky ideas go this is a fairly tame one but Kate and I liked the idea of being on a 1010m hill at 10:10am on 10/10/10. This had come about after we realised that we'd missed out with Stob Ban 999m as we'd done it on the 5th of September 09 instead of waiting to the 9th So the search was on for a 1010m hill. There are 4 in Scotland and the list was wittled down on the merits of location and ability to wildcamp. Kate had to be back in Cardiff on the Monday so Sgurr Eildhe Mor was the hill that ticked all the boxes.

So here we were over a year later and a few others were interested in this quirky outing, queue Zoe, Maria, Ben and David. By this time Kate and I were both on the injury list so we were taking the leisurely approach while the others were on a bagging mission. After a spot of lunch in The Ice Factor we parked up at Mamore Lodge with blue sky above. We were pleasantly surprised to spot a rather big bird circling above. Not being a twitcher or able to get the best picture we still have no idea what it is. Anyone any suggestions?

While we were getting ready to leave I filled Kate in on my little plan for Mamore Lodge should I win the Lottery. It is such a magnificent place and it's a real shame that it's not being used at the moment. Now when I win  the lottery................................

As we headed up the track there was a very obvious north south divide with the weather. Glencoe was shrouded in haze and low cloud while ahead of us we had blue sky. In the sun it was very pleasant but the wind was certainly gusting. By the time we reached Coire an Lochain we knew we might struggle to find enough sheltered space for us all and marveled at the Atko that was pitched at the north end of the bealach. After wandering about for 45 minutes trying to decide where the best camp spot would be, we decided that it would be better to head down towards Alt Coire Bhinnein especially as the winds were to get stronger overnight. Someone else had the same idea too but we found an area next to the stream that took our two Terra Nova Voyager Superlites. We were starting to wonder where the others were. The original plan was for us to rendezvous and camp on the narrow spur of land between the two lochains. With Kate and I deciding to drop down we kept looking out for the others. Zoe and Ben were coming off Sgor Eildhe Beag but we'd not seen them before we dropped down. Maria and David had gone over to Binnein Beag. They appeared at our camp spot just as the sun started to set. Next thing we saw was someone waving from the top of the bealach - it was Ben. Maria and David decided to brave the wind and head up to where Zoe and Ben had camped. We arranged to meet at 8am for the summit bid.

Looking back down Loch Leven
It was an interesting evening and night. The temperature dropped like a stone once the sun had gone down and even though it was a SE wind it had a real nip in it. Before too long Kate and I had retreated to our tents. We were kept entertained by the rutting stags who at times sounded very close. I'm sure I heard the clash of antlers a  couple of times. I was also somewhat perturbed when someone came past my tent saying "oh shit" at 130am - guess they might have wanted to camp where we were.

No magical sunset or sunrise pics from this wildcamp outing but that wasn't the purpose of the trip, we were here to do a numbers thing. We found the rest of the gang on the spur of land between the two lochains. Tents were still intact. We had 300m to climb so we left all the stuff and wandered up. Our timing was a little off, we were 30 minutes too early so we faffed about taking photos and munching Curly Wurly's.

Typically, none of us could agree on when it was 10:10am as all our watches and phones gave us different times. Not to worry, at least we were on the top long before the actual time and left well after. More photies though the haze meant we didn't get the full effect of the views. Ah well, mission accomplished.

Sgor Eildhe Beag & Coire an Lochain
Lookibg down to Coire an Lochain from summit ridge

Maria on Sgurr Eildhe Mor ridge
Kate enjoying the view
Official time and altitude keeper

Mission Accomplished
Once back at camp I remembered that I hadn't carried out my wee experiment for gourmet camp food - popping corn. Jetboil was fired up, oil heated and first batch into the pan - it was yummy. For some reason the second batch didn't pop and burned the bottom of the pan. Something I will try again as it was a nice wee treat that really weighs nothing. With everyone all packed up we headed back to Mamore Lodge. The journey back to Weegie would not be complete without  dropping into Crafts & Things Cafe Glencoe for coffee and chocolate cake along with popping into The Real Food Cafe. We settled for hot chocolate the as were had dinner waiting for us back in Weegie. Now, what to do for 11/11/11..............


  1. Nice idea. There's a problem next year though. Either adding or chopping a metre off a hill!

    (p.s very impressed with the blog)

  2. Next year might have to be 1111 feet chimpaction so not quite as dramatic as this year but then again we may come up with something even whackier

    Thanks for the kind comments :-)

  3. Sounds like a cracking adventure!
    I'm thinking yon bird's a buzzard Elaina, although I know there are golden eagles in the general area - we saw a couple on the descent from Sgurr Eilde Mor last time. Yours looks a wee bit pale underneath to be an eagle. The reason I think that, predictably, is because I'm looking at the wee birds of prey book we bought to take to Ardnamurchan with us last week. I think it's really pitched at primary school child level however, so I wouldn't take my suggestion as gospel.

  4. It was a great wee adventure :-D

    Having zoomed the photo in a close as I could get it is looking a bit pale so looks likely to be a buzzard. Would have been too good to be true to have seen an eagle as well on this trip

    Sounds like that's the book for me not being of the twitcher persuasion

  5. My girlfriend tells me that just about every bird I get excited about is a buzzard.

    Nice idea and nice photies.

    By the way , what is up with Mamore Lodge. it is a couple of years since I was there, but then it was still operating as a hotel.

  6. Mamore Lodge is currently closed. It's still owned by Alcan and leased to someone who I believe they are attempting to evict. It's such a shame as its in fantastic position and could appeal to quite a few if marketed properly. If only I could win the lottery..........

  7. Great write up, Elaina, I'm looking forward to next year as well!


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