Summits, sustenance, and sunsets

I enjoyed a lovely walk with summits, sustenance, and sunsets this evening, and my soul is now feeling recharged and energised for my efforts!

The plan for the evening was to summit Allermuir Hill in The Pentlands, and possibly Castlelaw Hill on the way back down (again). I set out with my walking partner at about 6 o’clock and we made it to the summit at Allermuir in about an hour. There was still plenty of light left in the evening, and we needed a place to eat, so the decision was made to carry on towards Caerketton Hill for some additional views.

Once we got to Caerketton, the sun was beginning to fade, and the evening sunlight provided the perfect lighting over the city and across the Firth of Forth towards Fife. So, we found a little outcrop of rocks to sit on whilst we ate our sandwiches and watched the colours of the sky change.

As hard as it can be to leave such a beautiful view, we wanted to get back to Allermuir to watch the sunset so that we would have time to get down off the hills before the light was completely gone. Happily, on the way back to Allermuir we got to see some Highland Coos up close, as they had moved towards the trail for their grazing. I was quite excited about this as they are so beautiful, but also because it made for some nice photos with the evening light.

Back at Allermuir, I called my Mum on Skype so that I could share the views with her. The conditions were just right for a strong signal, and it wasn’t windy (just a slight breeze) so we were able to have a quick chat whilst I provided here with 360° views of the Pentlands, overlooking Edinburgh. Then we stood to watch the sunset behind Ben Lomond before we began our descent in the evening light.

We made it off the hill with very little light to spare, and I am aware that evening walks will be shorter and shorter (or non-existent) over the next few months as summer fades into autumn. But I am trying to treasure the moment, so will try not to think about that just yet.

Throughout the walk, I was quite aware that my body felt strong, thanks in part to all the extra running and walking I’ve been doing over these months of (near) isolation. That was such a good feeling and has made me feel confident about my overall health – which will be measured a bit later this month at my nephrology appointment. (Fingers crossed that Bob and Dave are keeping well.)

All told, this evening’s walk was a little over 5.3 miles and took about three and a half hours. I often forget how accessible the hills are from my cottage! Although we did drive the first mile (which is just a boring road) and that does make a difference. It’s a bit past my bedtime now, but I am still buzzing from the high of the hills. I know photos aren’t quite the same as being there, but I hope you enjoy them!

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