Autumnal Blues?

I’ve been bereft of hill time over past couple of months and so it’s been a little quiet here. Whilst I’ve been working hard I have tried to keep an eye on others blogs – its always great to read of others adventures to keep the flame burning. And on the health-front my latest blood test came back normal so my visit to the Royal Marsden this week should be a formality.

Its a funny time of the year as summer has faded and yet winter seems just around the corner, with the first frost apparent this week. It feels as if we’re getting ready to hunker down for winter, the cold nights drawing in, the dark mornings, hearty stews displacing the summer salads, fleeces and scarves making a re-appearance, leaf-blowing replacing lawn-cutting…..! I love the colours, but unlike Spring, Autumn always feels more like an end, rather than a beginning! Maybe I’m suffering the autumnal blues!?!

As an antidote, I do have a weekend trip planned with my nephew at the end of October, with North Wales again the likely destination. A wild-camp is doubtful as my nephew wants to do some scrambling so we’ll leave the weight behind, though still probably still camp – Gwern Gof Uchaf campsite by Tryfan will likely get the vote as a base. I’m keen to test my Minim 300 sleeping bag’s limits – actually the bag is probably fine so perhaps I’m testing my own limits as I do seem to sleep colder than I thought!!
As a (poor) substitute for being out in the mountains I have been starting to put together a kit list for both winter and my planned Mont Blanc trip next year. I’ve also been loosely sketching out a few trips next year as a build up to MB in the summer. The winter-skills course we did in January really whetted my appetite so I’m going to make a concerted effort to make the most of winter this year and as a result my (Christmas?) kit wish-list is ever-growing….!!
And having decided, finally, to go for a Laser Competition tent, the pending winter and a plethora of new lightweight tents about to come onto the market has forced me to defer yet again. The updated Scarp 1 that Martin has details on over at SummitandValley is attracting a lot of interest.
Lastly, I must apologise for the shameless plug in the form of our ski-chalet in Bansko available for rent – click on the pic opposite for more info!! Having just been stung for the years maintenance and service charges, as well as a council tax bill, I need a bit of rental income to cover the bills!!! Although the skiing is not the most extensive, Bansko is relatively cheap, good fun and the Pirin Mountain range is quite spectacular and well worth a visit even in the Summer. There, plug over!!
Ok, back to my duvet and a cuppa tea…..!

3 Replies to “Autumnal Blues?”

  1. welcome back Nigel!
    Glad to hear the blood tests came back ok. Sounds like you have the same problem as me regarding time in the hills. Getting ridiculous for me and I am starting to getting very twitchy! I may be able to get a weekender in sometime in November and then that'll probably be it until Feb 🙁
    Still, I do like autumn with all the colours and funnily enough strong winds. Gusty autumn days are quite elemental and refreshing. Ok not necessarily great for camping in but they do lift me all the same

  2. Hi Nigel, chin up matey!

    Its not all bad and I think a winter trip is exactly what you need. It requires a different approach and mindset but nothing beats a crisp wildcamp with a dusting of snow to wake up to. Go on, get the maps out…..

    Last November in Wasdale was simply incredible and I'm looking to do something similar again. Perhaps a small winter gathering in the Lakes is required to cheer everyone up?

  3. Cheers Dave/Marcus!! I'm actually looking forward to winter, its the autumn bit thats a but damp and dull (too much work at the moment!). A few crisp wildcamps sound just the thing! A winter gathering the Lakes sounds like a plan – I'll def be up for it! Dave has just posted about his 'strangers-meet' in the Lakes earlier in the year which sounded great. Chuck some dates around and we'll see if we can get some interest!!

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