05 Dec 2014 - 07 Dec 2014
This weekend saw Mill cottage inundated by CDMCers. 23 people at least (there were a lot and I may have lost count) enjoyed a great weekend. Saturday was windy and clagged in on the higher tops but we dispersed undaunted to many summits: Phil headed off to Ben Rinnes (where the sunshine was), Alan, Janet, Lindsay, Tony and Moira headed up Meall a Bhuchaille, Neil and Sandy up Geal Charn Mor, Gavin up Carn Dearg More, Colin up Cairn Gorm, Brian and Angus bagged Ryvoan bothy, and Dave, Morven, Rhona and Maggie went for bike rides. I headed up Braeriach starting from Achlean, which was quite hard work navigationally in the poor visibility and relatively featureless landscape. I staggered back shortly before Christmas dinner was served, which as ever was amazingly tasty, copious, and well prepared by Neil and his army of kitchen elves.
After dinner we were wowed by two new musicians in the club: Gavin on the guitar, banjo, and unexpected lyrics, and James Moncur on the small pipes. Incredibly James managed to play Christmas carols beautifully on his pipes, and we managed to sing along without putting him off. Tony, Brian and Dave also lead a few tunes, backed up lustily by the Carn Dearg Choir.
On Sunday we woke to windows caked in snow, with an inch or so of soft snow in the car park and more falling gently throughout breakfast. This struck fear into my heart and I resolved to move my car to a major road asap. Less skittish members headed down smaller roads to enjoy the scenery: Scott and James going up from Achlean towards Carn Ban Mor and Alan, Lindsay and Janet going to appreciate the views at Loch an Eilein. Once I had my car safely stashed at Coylumbridge I went for a gentle run through Rothiemurchus forest and round Loch Morlich. Lovely Christmassy forest scenery.