Early Social Distancing – Strathfarrar, An Teallach memories.

When I was at RAF Leuchars as the Mountain Rescue Team Leader I used to raid the far North of Scotland (that was RAF Kinloss MRT Area) We had many great weekend. Sadly it took a bit of convincing the young team member’s that maybe Dundonnel our base for AnTeallach would not have the socialising of the Dundee night Clubs or even Aviemore or the Newtonmore Triangle. It was the same in the Fort and Glencoe some of theyoung team members would vanish and find a party, it was a tradition. So when the team was taken to the wilds of Strathfarra or Affric for a weekend many of the young troops were amazed that there was not even a pub. We would take our own drink if the midges allowed.

“What do you think Mark” – No disco he said. Mark met his wife at Newtonmore at New Year, notice I am wearing my running shoes “Walshes”, Mark is in big boots.

My plan was to get some big days in for them and get them to know these great areas. Maybe they would be to tired to socialise? No chance with these folk, they could find a party anywhere. Just like in my days when the call of the Ceilidh would be too much and many would involve a long walk back to our Base Camp. The photo below was on a great day on An Teallach with a few of the young fit guys. I was so pleased to be up on the ridge on such a day and asked what they thought. I got a hard time as there was no possibly no social in the area as the pub was low key. Then they discovered Ullapool after a hard day on the hill the hardened few would get a driver and off they went. I needed to know where they were in case of a call out. Once in Appin they got stuck at a party and had to wait for the tide to turn! These were the days before mobile phones.

Yet some of the remote areas had the best socials, fun nights with the locals at Lochinver and Kinlochbervie had some great nights. As did Kintail with the walk back from the Ceilidh at Glenelg a fair 2 hour walk back, just in time for breakfast and a day on the hill. In my early days we would get to the pub for last orders at the Sligachan Hotel after a long drive from Glen Brittle. We would meet locals and we were off to a dance or party in Portree or Broadford. On the way to the hill next day we would sometimes pick up the odd local heading home from a wild Skye night.

Early Social distancing?

About heavywhalley.MBE

Mountain Rescue Specialist. Environmentalist. Spent 37 years with RAF Mountain Rescue and 3 years with a civilian Team . Still an active Mountaineer when body slows, loves the wild places.
This entry was posted in Articles, Bothies, Enviroment, Friends, History, Islands, Mountain rescue, Mountaineering, Munros, Views Mountaineering, Well being. Bookmark the permalink.

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