Friday, 13 January 2012

Campsie Fells, Corrie of Balglass & Jock's Cairn

Its funny how we can go into self denial ?

I knew I had been comfort eating since the start of December. Then I devoured all the festive goodies but still refused to stand on the bathroom scales. I kept telling myself that my weight was fine because of all the walking I was doing.

My belt seemed to be shrinking too.. yet I still wouldn't admit I was putting on weight ?

One night last week I didnt sleep well. I felt bloated and a bit depressed so I got up and weighted myself. I became even more depressed now I had proof that I had put on 12lb over the xmas period. That is when I awoke to my comfort eating habits and started my diet.

Im pretty stubborn when I get something into my head. Perhaps that is how I always get to the top of my mountains ? So I went on a crash diet, knowing the best way to loose excess weight is by not eating.

On Thursday I decided to get up early and go another hill walk. I had a tomato and coffee for breakfast, made one small egg sandwich and cut a thin slice of cheese for my packed lunch on the hills. I was determined I was going to walk the blubber off my belly. This was day four of my diet and I had already lost 4lb.

I parked the car at Fintry and started walking up the steep slopes of Dunmore Hill. Its a lung buster right from the word go. I was starving as my belly swished from side to side as I waddled up the steep incline.

Dunmore is a craggy little outcrop above Fintry village and used to be the site of a fort in olden times. I felt like I was battling my way to its walls with hunger.

The views to the north quietened my racing mind. Ben Ledi, Vorlich and Stuc a Chroin looked great under blue sky and in early morning light.

The views back down to Fintry and over to Stronend hill took my breath away, at least that is how I felt as I puffed my way ever upwards. Then my head started to spin and I felt slighty faint. I knew what was wrong. I opened my bag and swallowed the thin slice of cheese. It was like heavenly mana and stopped my legs from failing.

My quick snack gave me the energy to walk on the flat over to the edge of the Corrie of Balglass. I reached its rim well below it higher edges of the southern and eastern slopes.

It looked huge and very distant across to its far side.

My mind was constantly thinking of my egg sandwich as I made my way round the many ups and downs of the corrie rim. Even the magnificent views of Loch Lomond couldn't distract my hunger.

My original plan was to walk around the Corrie to Jocks Cairn then cover another mile over to the summit of Earl's Seat which is the highest point on the Campsie's. I promised my stomach that it could have the egg sandwich at Jock's Cairn. I made my way slowly round the Corrie

The low sun didn't help with my photographs as the corrie was in the shade most of the way but this was taken on my way back as the light lit the eastern slopes

My stomach felt very relieved when it saw Jock's Cairn come into view near the western edge of the huge corrie. I just had to navigate the peat bogs and I could have my sandwich in peace.

As soon as I summited the sandwich was swallowed. It was the best egg sandwich ever eaten. I looked back along the fells to the start of my walk where the red arrow is and it looked miles away. Three and a bit miles, to be exact.

I looked over to Earl's seat and knew it was another 2 miles to add onto my walk and there was a fair but of height still to go.

My head wanted to go the full distance but my legs didn't. They needed food. I knew my head couldn't go without my legs so I reluctantly gave in and decided to go back to Fintry the way I had come. I did take a slight short cut inland but it was pretty uninteresting terrain

Meikle Bin and Dungoil broke up the flat fell's view to the south east

I was pretty weary and mighty hungry by the time I started descending the slopes of Monach Moss back towards Dunmore Hill

Finally I reached the crags of Dunmore and was very glad that I had turned back at Jocks Cairn. I had walked 6.5 miles and climbed a total of 2000ft on a thin slice of cheese and a small egg sandwich. I would need more food to walk further than that.

I was disappointed the following morning as I weighed the same as before that stomach starving walk. But I do recomend the Campsie is a lovely area and I will return.

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