Girnock Grind

We parked at the bridge over the Girnock and set off up Creag Ghiubhais from the east. I knew this would be a tough wee climb and it was, up through steep man-eating heather and rocky stuff, and I rapidly realised this was not the best day to have chosen for my first shorts outing of the year as blood started dripping down my shins. The stunted old pines at the top almost made up for it – this is one of our favouritist spots in Deeside. We then dropped off the west side down broken rock and across the bog (bubbling with amorous frogs) to climb towards the gap between Creag nam Ban and the next cp on Sgor an h-Iolaire. It’s a few years since I’ve been up here but I’m sure there were far more deer tracks at the time, now it’s just lots more man-eating heather in amongst one or two magical ancient trees. We finally picked up a path once we got onto the ridge proper and broke into a trot for the first time, but sadly this petered out again soon after the high point. Jon mutterred about turning left once we hit the track, but I (foolishly) told him to man up and we crossed the next bog towards the foot of the Coyles of Muick and our 3rd cp. The one good thing about this hill is that it is mostly grassy, but we were both tired and it was a slow climb to the top. Then it was just a long slow run back along the ridge, but a run at least. We found a decent line off the north west end back down to the gate in Glen Girnock.
All in all this was a bit of a beast made a lot worse by us starting tired and low on energy.
I had a quick ice bath in the Girnock after, to help speed up recovery.