Snowy Microadventure (Wed. 8th Feb.)
In Scotland, winter is the best time for a night under the stars (or cloud). A bold statement perhaps, but if it is snowing then at least you are guaranteed a midge free night! So, with snow forecast, I packed my kit plus my new £5 tarp and headed out into the night.
It was a short walk from Oldtown to the top of Pittendreich (508m) via Burnside, and I arrived in a shower of fine snow. I took a few minutes to scout around the large cairn to find the best place to site my bivvy. The lee side of a small pine tree provided a bit of shelter from the cold breeze and a springy heather mattress. I used the new tarp to create a simple lean-to shelter and settled in for the night.
The shelter worked well keeping the snow and wind off my bivvy, and my much-travelled 3-season sleeping bag (plus all my clothes) kept the cold just about at bay. I woke in the cloud, around 7am, to snow laden trees and the early light. A couple of brews of tea brought me slowly back to life whilst I enjoyed that soft quiet afforded by the cloud and the snow.
"Microadventure" is a term coined by the adventurer Alistair Humphreys. He's been making it his mission to spread the word about small scale everyday adventures. Check out his website if you're interested: www.alastairhumphreys.com/microadventures
He is also speaking next month at the Aviemore Adventure Festival about his round the world cycle: http://www.aviemoreadventure.org/