Saturday May 16, 2020
The land is so dry it’s a relief to see grey curtains of rain wrapping the hills. Like chain mail hanging from a giant war horse jumping the Clach Glas ridge and trailing the over the Red Hills.
Saturday Apr 18, 2020
Another day of lockdown. Another day of traffic free roads, blazing sunshine and birdsong echoing in the trees. The allotted time spent on the bike, spinning on the quiet roads, looking longingly at the familiar mountains but loving every mile of the ride.
Sunday Apr 12, 2020
Another day, another lockdown. Sunny and windy with a brewing gale from the north, it was a good time for a spin on the bike. Just before Broadford it was a bit of a shock to see a snake of brightly coloured people crammed onto the quad bike track to the loch. It was the greatest concentration of humanity I’d seen in, let me see now, three weeks! Quite a shock indeed.
Sunday Apr 5, 2020
Being confined to the local area, working from home and avoiding social contact (hoorah on that one!), I had plenty time, like all day, to work on the bike.
Saturday Mar 28, 2020
Deserted roads. Deserted skies. Deserted hills. With the country in lockdown for potentially the next three weeks, the rules allow one form of daily exercise. From the front door. No driving to anywhere. Only one form of exercise, either walking, running or cycling.
Sunday Mar 22, 2020
Almost a year ago I betook myself and Fatty McFat Bike to the wonderful Isle of Rum. I made a wee film about the trip and looking back on it, the lack of people, the peace, the silence, were not only invigorating and renewing but those scenes now seem to hold a hint of prescience.
Tuesday Dec 31, 2019
Walking up Beinn na Cro, a strong sun at my back, it felt like 4am on a midsummer morning. The softness of the light, the mildness of the air, the quiet road receding behind my bootsteps. It was weird.
Sunday Dec 8, 2019
With the news that the world’s oceans are running out of oxygen while humanity makes land grabs on habitats in order to blanket forest a fig-leaf for their unabated, voracious consumption and pollution. With the endless noise and light pollution of increased fish farm traffic up and down the west coast, implementing the Scottish government’s requirement to double output by 2030, regardless of animal welfare and environmental destruction. With hydro roads up many glens, industrial fencing marching with the West Highland Line from Glasgow to Fort William, creating in effect two Trump-like walls for wildlife to die negotiating, I asked myself the other day, is the outdoors still great?
Sunday Nov 10, 2019
Minus three on the tops, thirty mile an hour winds raking the last of autumn colour from the Cuillin ridge, laying down a white carpet ready for the arrival of the Winter Queen. Blasting down from the north, she detours out beyond St. Kilda, raising storm-seas in the cold Atlantic before swinging round Mingulay, resting on the raucus cliffs of Barra Head before howling in tonight to claim the mountains for her winter home.
Monday Aug 26, 2019
A day off, what to do? With hot weather and a fair forecast for the Monday, it had to be a bivi up in the hills. I’d always fanced bivying on Slat Bheinn summit where it looks across to the wild east face of Blaven and gives aeriel views of Coire Uaigneich and so it was decided, intending to wander around the top, composing poems and jotting down philosophical gems in my notebook. The forecast mentioned increasing wind overnight, low cloud, then clearing. Turned out a bit wilder than that!