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Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Peebles-Moffat First Full Day

uphill handrailing broad law
After a cold and frosty but beautiful moonlit night, Camp Alpha awoke slowly, brewed and cooked and all that kinda stuff and stumbled off up through the heather to a little col just South of Dun Rig.
The party waited whilst Martin and Jungle bagged Dun Rig. There was, for a while, bog and heather and tussocky stuff, but gradually the underfootings improved.
a small party sets off to bag dun rig
After bagging Black law, we lunched in slightly brightening weather at Foulbrig Head. Some trail riders, expecting me to open the gate for them were disappointed and had to dismount. I expect there was bad language and sulking inside those helmets and face disguises.
At this point, John J decided to establish The Jocys Alternative – specially for those with dodgy knees. This consists of the track South to Megget Reservoir and a hop up the road to the Megget Stone. John would establish the site of Camp Sheepgrapes.
lunchtime
The remainder had a bit more tussock bashing to do before a track took us more easily up on to the main Manor Hills ridge. Martin dashed off to bag Dollar Law whilst the less energised took a shortcut onto the ridge and headed off for Cramalt Craig.
peewiglet enjoys a short break
Broad Law, which is very broad and has a radio station thingy and an alien spaceship on the top, was our first Corbett and the high point of the walk. It was apparent at this point that many members of the team were getting a bit fragged, so it was heartening to spot John J’s akto pitched beside the beck in the valley bottom. A short and steep descent was enjoyed by some. Piglet enjoyed searching for a mountain hare that had rushed off in another direction.
after broad law
Camp  was established on short sheep shit and piles of grass. A small cache of medicinal supplies was produced and this was used to wash down Peewiglet’s cheese and sausage. I am afraid that at least two of the pies intended for this party had been used to counteract a couple of episodes of Handrailers Lassitude. As I pointed out, it is important that the navigator retains full access to all of his intellectual faculties and one good way of ensuring this is a constant supply of finely slaughtered pigs in pastry.
Handrailing was used as a navigational strategy all day. For those puzzled by the expression, it means following something. In this case, there seems to be a fence pretty much all the way from Peebles to Moffat.
There was a short but well focussed boozing and chatting session before it got too cold and the beer and wine supplies dried up.
Another moonlit night followed before a mid night arrival of some cloud and drizzle.
We’d done about 14 miles with 3100 feet of uphill – so, a good, beefy kind of hillwalking day. And it was becoming apparent that this little group was quite good at supporting and encouraging it’s members in their various periods of despondency and that spirits were high – a very good sign indeed.
black law
day two part one showing variations
jocys variation
day two part two. Loops at the top by Martin Banfield, Southern Loop is the Jocys variation. Squiggly line is what the rest of us did (Piglet did a lot more…)

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