Beinn Eighe is strikingly unusual. As I climbed the hillside, which you take from the rear, it felt like Crete. I walked up Mount Gingilos many years ago and looked across the Lefka Ori – White Mountains – wondering at their stark beauty. On Crete you are surrounded by rich blue sea. In Scotland it’s the hills. In both cases, with Beinn Eighe, you enjoy the white rock.

Beinn Eighe is a favourite with more to explore than you first realise. Two or three summits with crags, drops, rocks and a great deal of interest. Nan Shepherd walked the Cairngorms extensively going deeper, as she would have said it, into their meaning. Wainwright did that in the Lake District but his product is now so commercialised it gets irritating.

I want to return to Beinn Eighe. Do it again, do it some more, do it differently. You can spend a lifetime exploring Scotland and not get bored. The problem – for me – is the weather and the midges. Much as I love these hills I don’t like dreich and biting insects.

 

Scotland Mountains: Beinn Eighe (11)

Thursday July 19, 2012