A good week

Creag Mhor from Stob an Fhir Bhogha

Creag Mhor from Stob an Fhir Bhogha

It has been a busy but profitable week….alas, not financially, but I’ve certainly got a lot of painting done.

The week started well though with a very enjoyable day on the hill. With the forecast looking very good we’d decided to go back to Glen Lochy and once again head for Creag Mhor …the 1047m Munro that lies at the western end of the glen. As reported we’d been here back in the spring but on that occasion thoroughly messed up our navigation and failed to get to the top …so then, this was to be our second attempt. We hadn’t though appreciated quite how hot it was going to be ….and it’s a fairly long walk to the base of the hill. It really was baking as we headed along the glen and there was hardly a breath of wind to ease the heat.

From Beinn Heasgarnich

From Beinn Heasgarnich

After about an hour and a quarter we stopped for a drink and on realising we still had another kilometre or so to go in this oven we decided to change our plans and head straight up and climb the nearer of the two Munros – Beinn Heasgarnich….hoping that by gaining some height we might get into a breeze or some cooler air. This involved a steep haul up grass, picking our way between small crags until at around 800 m the angle eased and we reached a large and rather boggy flattish area. Beyond another steep and craggy section led to the top of Stob an Fhir Bhogha at 1029 m. It certainly became less hot but not because of height or finding the breeze. Instead, very rapidly, cloud appeared and by the time we were half way up there was virtually no blue sky visible and it was becoming very dark…..but thankfully cooler. To the south of us we could clearly see Ben More and as it is almost 100 m higher than the hill we were on, it gave a good indicator as to whether the cloud base was getting lower. Thankfully, this wasn’t the case, but apart from the occasional glimpse of the sun we were walking in quite gloomy light for the rest of the day.

Beinn Heasgarnich

Beinn Heasgarnich

From the top of Stob an Fhir Bhogha it’s just a very simple and gentle wander across almost level stony tops to reach the summit of Beinn Heasgarnich at 1078 m. Despite the now grey skies, the visibility was very good and we could make out many of the peaks …Ben Nevis stood out very clearly to the north.

Despite there being a number of cars parked at the end of the road when we set out, we only saw three other walkers all day …one of them who turned up at the summit just five minutes after our arrival. We returned by a slightly different route, one that was less steep but slightly wetter …but at least we got to see lots of tiny yellow frogs …some of them no bigger than a 5p piece! Needless to say I didn’t see as many as Nita.

Beinn Heasgarnich

Beinn Heasgarnich

 

The painting has as I said gone well this week. I’ve completed another of the new 80 x 80 cm pieces and have two more on the go and several more planned. Nita had been over to Kilmarnock to get some more board cut for me and so in between the real painting I’ve been madly priming these boards. I’m quite pleased with the way things are progressing and I feel that I am at long last starting to move these paintings on a bit …it’s quite exciting. I’m arranging for a photographer to visit the studio at the end of the month so should have some decent images to show you in a couple of weeks.

It’s the annual North Ayrshire Open Exhibition soon. Today is the hand in day today and I am entering a small piece and one of the new larger paintings. Nita put this big piece in a frame the other day and it is the first time I’ve seen one of these new larger pieces framed up …I’m very pleased with the way it’s looking. Mind you, as with all ‘open’ exhibitions …you can never be sure if your work will be selected. It’s a bit of a gamble, though it’s always a little depressing if your stuff is rejected, but that’s the nature of the beast I guess!!! Fingers crossed! The exhibition opens a week today and runs for two weeks. Most years it contains around a hundred or so paintings and a small selection of sculpture. Its well worth a visit so if you live in Ayrshire do call in to see it. I’ll be posting full details shortly.

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