Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Rigby Round, 13-15 December 2010

74 miles, 18,000 feet challenge. 54 hours, solo unsupported



The first winter completion of the classic Cairngorms round which visits the tops of the 18 Northern Cairngorm Munros in a circuit from Loch Morlich.  I saw no sign of civilisation or people until the ski slopes at the end and had no tracks to follow for the most part, so it was a true solo experience.  After a brilliant first day of sun on frozen snow, the night degenerated to freezing rain driven by a 40 mile per hour wind.  I was then soaked, cold and enveloped in a white out for the next 40 hours.  It was a most testing experience, especially during the second night when I became hopelessly lost and spent 9 hours trudging through the snow without knowing where I was.  Having tested my compass subsequently, I think the large bubble in my compass caused it to read incorrectly.  In any event, what promised to be a 36 hour challenge turned into a 54 hour epic.


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