I left the car parked at Crianlarich just at the back of 11.00am, I didn’t get back until around 6.00pm I covered around 18 mile, heading down the way on the WHW to the Doune Bothy and back. 7 hours to cover 18 miles, and what a brilliant 7 hours it was, ok it wasn’t a hard paced training run but I wasn't there for that, I had a day purely for pleasure with plenty pauses to take photos (I did take around 120 but have whittled them down to around 70) I sat at Dario’s post for a while in the warm sunshine, I smiled at a very comforting thought, with Dario’s experience at welcoming folk after a long hard journey he is now job sharing with Peter at the pearly gates, my Mum would've got such a warm welcome and a huge hug.
At this time of year I wasn’t sure if I’d meet many folk, the first was Martin, near Carmyle Cottage, he was going from the Drovers Inn to Tyndrum and back, training for the Marathon De Sables, then a couple of guys near Beinn Glas , then two young girls wearing their festival wellies, sitting in the sun. There was going to be a party in the Doune Bothy, I met a handful of guys when I was heading back, they were hefting big rucksacks full of beer and a dart board, I smiled at the last two blokes who were straggling behind, they asked me how far away they were, they had already cracked open their carry oot, one had a can in hand, the other offered me some of his Buckie for my drinks bladder, I thanked him but said I’d just stick to what I’ve already got.
I met Martin again as he was nearing the end of his run, we blethered a bit and both of us wondered if I’d get back to Crianlarich before dark but it was a goal to aim for and I nearly made it, the moon was rising, the light was dimming and flattening the path, I put in a bit of effort before coo poo junction but was cautious on the stony path afterwards. I saw a couple of runners heading towards me; I thought “What kind of nutters runs at this time of night at this time of year?” Obviously... it was Jim and Jim! Mr Robertson was celebrating his 71st year with running 71 miles, heading down the Way with Mr Drummond from Kingshouse. It was the icing on the cake to my day to meet them but Jim D can talk the hind legs of a donkey and all feeling from the finger tips on a freezing evening, as I found out when I left them, I struggled with my head torch but I only had the descent through the woods from the deer fence to go and my flask of coffee was waiting... that and my wine and pizza when I got home.
Pace is not relevant when you have the company of Angels.