The First Hill by Lynn

The First Hill by Lynn

Ben A'an

Mental health is big news just now and l am glad to see it. The stigma of mental health is being broken down bit by bit and this can only be a good thing. Seeing 1st hand the effect it can have on the sufferer and the loved ones, getting support is a must. l am glad to be able to help a little in keeping this support going by registering for nmn2 and fundraising while having great fun and challenging myself too, which now in my mid fifties is no mean feat ?. I have decided to write a little blog of my journey to Ben Nevis and l hope it will encourage you to join in too.

The journey towards nmn2 started on Saturday 22nd April when my sis-in-law and l ( now l’m sure she won’t mind me saying but we are both not in the best physical shape) jumped in the car and drove to Ben A’an in the heart of the Trossachs. We had prepared for the climb with the correct footwear and outerwear and carried our backpacks with water and some snacks and looked the part. Excitedly we jumped out the car ready for our ascent. Well the excitement was short lived as we were daunted and panting within 10 minutes of starting. For around 10 minutes we sat on a rock, ate a banana and pondered about how we were ever going to manage getting to the top. At that point 2 men were on their way back down and stopped to chat with us. We spoke about the climb, their take on it, and others that we could do. That gave us the kick up the bum we needed to carry on.

We took it in bite sized pieces and admired the scenery along the way and gasped when we looked up to the peak, where we were heading, at the very scale of it but we knew that we were going to reach it no matter. Now for many people they might think it is an easy enough climb but for us and many others it was a challenge but we met so many lovely people (and dogs) along the way and everyone had their words of encouragement to keep us motivated. It was wonderful to see couples, friends and families, ages ranging from about 8 to 70 challenging themselves too. There was a little area too where people were sitting on rocks having a rest, drinks and snacks before attempting to scale the steepest part yet. We took advantage of the same spot before setting off on that final stage.

It was a little challenging and rocky but people kept telling us how amazing it was at the top so we weren’t going to miss out. How glad were we that we never gave up? It was stunning up there and we were exhilarated, the adrenaline rush was amazing and we couldn’t stop smiling but we weren’t the only ones, everyone was the same. Strangers wanted to take pictures for you and you were taking pictures for strangers. What a social experience too. It was so relaxing and tranquil we didn’t want to leave.

Now l am not going to lie but the descent was not so great and bit a bit sore on the knees but really that didn’t matter as we chatted about the climb and the whole experience. We were so proud of ourselves and that start we had made on our journey to Ben Nevis. Next week we are planning a very long walk as part of our training when we will decide on the next hill to climb.

27/04/2017 at 10:16 am