Sunday, 18 October 2015

Innerdownie: First Donald Bagged

With a fledgling interest in hill walking and an apparent death wish (I was in the beginnings of a flu-ey cold that would last a good 4 weeks), I decided to start at the bottom (no pun intended), not to climb a Munro, but a Donald!

Most people have heard of Munro bagging but if you’re semi-sensible (or just want to work your way up to it) then you first have to go through the Donalds (and maybe the Corbetts and Grahams!).

The Donalds are hills in the Scottish Lowlands over 2000 feet (609.6 m). The list was originally compiled by Percy Donald, and is maintained by the SMC. It comprises 89 summits and 51 subsidiary tops, giving a total of 140 hills.

Naturally, we chose to climb the lowest - Innerdownie - at a still hefty 2004ft.

When we started out the weather was clear but very quickly the clouds descended until you couldn’t see more than a couple of meters in front of you. There wasn’t much view to miss out on at this point in the walk but it did make me a little more grumpy than if it had been a glorious day!

I don’t think Tilly was particularly pleased either as low cloud meant we were walking through a wall of water!!

Luckily for us, the clouds lifted soon after and we finally made it to the top with only one wrong turn!

The downward journey was a little bit more eventful and unfortunately included one more wrong turn. We found ourselves traversing a path right alongside the edge of the forest in plants that were as tall as we were.

Another unfortunate circumstance was that I tend to get the giggles at really inappropriate times. As we battled through the plants and willed ourselves to the bottom of the hill (all the while seeing a lovely clear path through the fence to our other side - upsettingly blocked by a small ravine and our own obstinacy that we shall not turn back!!) I got such a fit of the giggles. I was laughing so hard that I had to stop and take a breather.

It was not funny.

That made it funnier.

We made it to the bottom in one piece and drove home. It was then I realised how unwell I really was as I couldn’t swallow any food and was running a very high temperature. Oh well - at least I have pictures to prove that I actually climbed my first Donald. If I didn’t then perhaps I would have thought it was a hallucination.

I’ve got another few Donalds on the list before I work my way up higher. But they might wait until after this bad winter we’ve had predicted!!


  1. Ha! Don't let her fool you - for all that she was soaked, she still had a whale of a time! :D


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