Monday, 25 February 2013

Tiree Hi School's annual Winter Walking Weekend. Sunday 24th and Monday 25th Feb

A year passes quickly. On Sunday and Monday I was back in the hills with the pupils and staff from Tiree High School. This is a special piece of work for me as it always impresses me how much effort and ambition the pupils from Tiree put into these two days. Coming from an island no higher than a few hundred metres and for some never having stood in snow it is a big experience all round!
So Sunday we went with the weather, pure Alpine conditions dictated an ascent of a lofty and shapely mountain. We opted for Sgorr Dhonuill 1001 m above  Ballachulish. This peak is just so beautiful and has a interesting final wee climb to it's well positioned summit. The pupils did so tremendously well. A corniced narrow snow ridge led us to the summit and the reward of a view back to Tiree off the west coast and other west coast islands.   On Monday we headed to the relative ease and reward of up lift at Glencoe Mountain Ski Resort. The tiered legs of the day before's 1000 m ascent the up lift was gratefully accepted for a brief lift up the hill dose make a huge difference. We spent the morning completing skills training and a lot of fast sliding and some smooth stopping before ascending Meall a Bhuiridh. The Pupils were so determined to summit again, gain another Munro and get the photo of the views!  

It has to be said that being in the hills over the last few days with many school pupils has been inspiring. Whilst society and many schools and teachers become risk averse, these pupils and their staff have illustrated that the hills and outdoor education is a worthwhile and essential educational activity. Indeed the  mountains provide an education that can not be found in text books nor class rooms.  Thanks to all involved for making these experiences happen for the young people.