I wake up surprisingly early without any need to be prodded.
I look out side my window over ‘my balcony’ area. Oh my the sun is out and look at the sky.
I contact Alan and Zoe and tell them to get up out of bed, the weather is perfect and we should head off now now now. I obviously put some cloths on first.
This is it then. We are ready for the off. Up I get carrying six litres of fluid, numerous sandwiches, a very large pork pie, biscuit, chocolate bars, jumper and something else.
We walk up the high street with our rucksacks on, well me and Zoe Alan is taking a satchel!?!?
We stop at the Ben Nevis cafe where Alan gets me a bacon roll and a cup of take away tea. “That's all you need for your day Nack, stop looking at those cakes!”
Alan heads us to the bus stops, where he believes there will be a bus to take us to the base camp of Nevis.
According to the digital read out on the bus stop he is right.
Although it appears to never come.
“Be patent young Nackles the day is young and it will come” He advises. And sure enough it comes. We are the only passengers and the bus driver greets us very friendly and has a chat with us. “Shockingly we say the place is deserted and its a Bank holiday weekend? Odd” “ Very” he replies. He is a man of many words but I can’t recall them all.
The bus driver wishes us luck as we get off and says “perhaps I’ll see you later.”
This is it then, we look quickly round the visitors canter, take note that they expect hail later on and walk off.
Hail we say they must be joking and stroll down the river side path.
Before we cross the river there is a sign advising the course to follow.
and points of interest.
Erm looks nothing like what we are looking at.
we cross the bridge that has a maximum permissible load of 5 people and as you walk across it you can tell why.
Safely on the other side I’m excited, energetic and desiring the summit. Will I make it?
the views are gorgeous.
and the pace is nice.
So here we go 9:20am and I set my tracer on my phone too.
Over the stile.
And upwards and beyond. “Wow oh wow look at the view” I say over and over.
the path gets steeper
I don’t know how you are carrying al that in your rucksack Nack.
Call me a mule unlike Satchel man.
And off he strolls.
Were at the bridge, not far to go now then!
Lovely bridge very in keeping with the area.
“we” struggle onwards
The summit is up there somewhere.
Why are you pair resting for god sake.
I want a Jelly Baby, Nack do you want a Jelly Baby?
Jelly Babies Jelly Babies.
I take it it is this way then.
Keep up Nack will you.
Oh stunning, stunning, what a day to come on up.
Are you tired Alan? No you just want some water!
The beauty goes on.
My where have all these people come from.
the pack disperses and to a point we are alone again on the stair to heaven.
“what is it you want me to look at Zoe?”
Then there was the waterfall moment, and Nack goes climbing.
the view is better still from here.
Zoe also climbs up.
But was it just for water.
then Alan joins us too.
While it would be nice to stay we have a mission.
Nack move those legs faster.
All I can say is I’m glad I didn’t build these steps.
they were done by the hand of God Nack, nobody would be stupid enough to build a staircase up here.
Well they’ve made a nice job of them.
Alan disappears without me and Zoe who may have had a Jelly Baby break. Can you see way up there?
The lone adventurer.
Perhaps we are just enjoying the endless changing veiws too much.
The staircase ends and we make our own pathway up.
“Nack there is snow – you like snow” says Zoe encouraging up.
I tease the Ben Nevis Yeti.
Do you think it will come and eat us. I’ll tell you you’d see me move then like never before.
For a while the snow turns back into rock.
And we catch Alan up. When I say catchup he may have waited for us. Perhaps a satchel was the right idea then?
Might as well keep going now then.
Deep breaths of fresh air nothing like it.
Is this a glacier I consider?
We walk again briefly on snow.
Before having another Jelly Baby moment. How are the rations Zoë?
For a moment we are all single file.
And then they disappear. There are a few comments about Zoe’s jeans.
Satchel man awaits us once more. Is this a race?
“Nack I can see the summit” exclaims Zoe.
the pace lifts up and we head for the snow field.
Just like when I climbed Snowdon the final section is completely white.
And the going gets hard and the light is blinding, even if it doesn’t look it on the photos.
“wow Nack this is the best”
Just like at that dream view.
So much snow, I wish I’d brought my snowboard up if I’d known.
Romance is back in the air.
God knows what is in his mind - “Nack you are hurting my head – stop it”
And the race is on
who will reach the summit first.
the clouds have appeared
and perhaps we should be worried about hail after all.
Will follow the cairns on the never ending journey
Admiring every now and again
taking it all in our stroll
Keeping an eye out for the land marks.
So Nack & Zoe this is the last leg then.
We need to be careful hear, Nack don’t get too close to the edge.
Is the summit there is it?
I can’t believe we are going to make it.
The enthusiasm is overwhelming
and we are off
Notable only me in shorts and a T-shirt then.
This is great
together in electric dreams on the toppish of a mountain.
that's it dead ahead.
Wow look at them all.
Where are those toilets you mentioned Zoe?
Perhaps they are in there.
There’s a lot of munching going on here.
And it certainly is the place to have dinner.
Nope there not toilets.
And so the posing begins, us three at the top – we did it and it was great to share the moment with two people I love dearly.
Me at the top.
Us at the top on the posing podium. And if you can tell by Zoe’s face getting all three of us on was awkward and took several attempts so what happens next is a miracle,
Us and Ben Moore at the top and they said they never even know and how did I do it. Magic :)
And now I just prat around a while
Enjoying the moment
This is it, it all makes sense from up here.
Can I just fly down?
Stunning truly and utterly stunning.
We look for somewhere to make camp for dinner.
I select that rock.
And we settle for dinner at 13:20.
anybody for a bit of pork pie? No? No! No? Well I’m not carrying it down again.
i bet they’d like some pork pie.
A feast was eaten, of sandwiches, biscuits, crisps, bananas, chocolate bars and for me, the biggest pork pie know to man.
Apparently it was time to move off.
this meant only one thing.
More leg abuse
At least we could enjoy the views from a different angel on the way down.
We walk the rock.
We walk the snow
We slide in the snow.
we play in the snow.
Going down is much fast than up that's for sure.
well for Alan.
“Ah your keeping up now are you Nack.” he says.
these boots are mighty fine in the snow I thinks.
Alan don't’ you dare.
Guys stop it – I want to join in.
it will never hit.
and the plodding downwards goes on
and those jeans, they were a much better idea than the satchel.
And whilst I’m tiring the views keep me marching on.
that and if I keep up with Zoe I might get another Jelly Baby.
So I do my best to keep up.
Nack I told you you’ve eaten the lot.
He looks in his bag and produces me another chocolate bar.
and heads off while I munch on it.
Can you believe he’s in front of us! and walking backwards!
I’d like to think the end is in sight. But its not.
And I no longer hold the lead position.
Look we are catching this group up.
“wow” says Zoe, “do you carry your dog everywhere?”
Lucky bugger that's all I can say.
From here on in I run out of energy
and they begin to leave me behind.
Zoe has long gone.
and Alan leaves me to die on the mountain alone.
i see Zoe way way below and see advises she'll get me a beer at the bar when she gets there.
well she knows how to encourage me. I make a new friend and we talk for a while.
the path becomes endless, really did I walk up here?
ah look there is the Ben Nevis bar, thankgod.
A few more meters.
And Alan comes to guide me for the last bit.
Everthings okay now, or so it seems.
“There’s something we need to tell you Nack” they say.
“you need to neck that the bus leaves in 15 minutes and we’ve still got to walk to the bus stop!”
And off we plod, I truly do not want to miss the bus!
And there off, so neither do they!
Over the bride and to the bus stop. Luckily the bus is late. very late. And when it comes, its the same driver! “Did you make it then?” he asks. “We sure did :)”. He's been up twice some 25 years ago and the path as we know it didn’t exist back then. Alan and Zoe go and sit at the back, while I stay up front and have a right natter with him. We are the only people on the bus again! As it happens he drops us right off at the Travelodge once he’d asked where we where staying, how kind was that.
We go on in, have a shower and then I head to a bar. I walk the high street in search of somewhere I can write and have a beer, but everywhere is crowded, even the place I choose and lean on the bar for a while. The atmosphere is buzzing though. Alan and Zoe ring me and I say I’ll come out, its too packed in here anyway and they won’t fit, yeah it was that full. A decision comes to going to the Weatherspoons.
We get some beers and head to the beer garden, which is a nightmare of being upstairs! so its more of a roof garden then! Well its just opposite my room window isn’t it!
So this is it. This is the course we took to the top of Ben Nevis.
This was our pace and altitude.
and this is how long it took us. Not bad eh!
We enjoyed the fresh air for a bit.
Then went in doors to play I’m the duke.
Nope I really am the Duke this time Zoe!
And we ate.
Oh boy was the food nice.
We also drank cannonballs too.
Perhaps we shouldn’t have done but we did.
this of course didn’t go to my head or effect my game playing abilities, I know Zoe’s tactics.
Eventually though it was time to go to bed.
and the best thing was
the Travelodge was right above us.
[ IF YOU WANT TO SEE ALL THE PHOTOS CLICK THE PHOTO ABOVE ]