The view from my first hill-run in my new local area, the Northern Cairngorms.
6 days since I left Glencoe…packing, goodbyes, driving, unpacking, sadness, excitement, plans. New surroundings, different sights, different sounds.
The peerless glen which I have left behind is now replaced by the endless land of plenty that is the Cairngorm plateau. The permanent snows and the tundra, the views that don't have an end to them. Forests like nowhere else, ospreys, reindeer..the kinds of rivers that come to you in daydreams.
The first few days of a new life haven't given much time for the hills, but today I started. A windy hill-run up the local graham Carn a'Ghille Charr (710m). Heather and sphagnum, mountain hares and grouse, curlews and plovers….so different to my runs in Glencoe, but yet so familiar.
The unique rapture of running to the top of a hill, but with a totally unknown view to greet me and expand with every footfall. It felt fresh to be somewhere new again. Carn a'Ghille Charr's summit looked across almost the entire Cairngorm plateau, still fully in winter's grip. What first? I hardly know where to start.