So I'm a couple of weeks behind on posting this, but better late than never, eh? ;)
I almost never get to see my friend Laurie anymore, now that she rarely comes in to the city from her home in Banchory. I guess being a commuting student will do that... and it does make getting together more of a treat. A couple of weeks ago, Laurie, Kristianna and I got to spend the whole day together-- and boy, was it a treat! Mainly for the company, of course =D but also because we hiked up Bennachie, one of our high points around here.
That's it, right there... we hiked all the way up to the top of that! Let me tell you, it's a long way up. This is taken as we are coming down the other side, but oh well. You get the picture.
Anyway, Laurie drove into the city and picked us up around 9.30 on a Saturday morning. Now, those of you who know me, know that I usually don't even know there are two 9:00s, much less be up that early on a Saturday. I can make exceptions, and I did that day. It was so worth it! Laurie drove the three of us out to Bennachie, which is inland west a ways. We ended up with a beautiful day, with sun and warm temps for most of it, anyway. Even once the clouds came in and it got chilly, we still managed to avoid any rain. Yay! We started out at the visitor's centre
where they even had coffee! Kristianna was very happy about that. We took our 'before' picture here, and then headed off. Or up, as the case may be.
And dang, was it steep! I am used to walking all over the place, but I'm not used to climbing. I climb stairs to my first floor flat, and my second floor office... but that's about it. There aren't even very many steep bits in the city, so a full day of steep climbing tired out muscles I didn't even know I had! I was sore for days... and I was quite slow. Both the gals were very good to me, though, and didn't make me feel bad for holding them up. But this was a common occurrence-- them waiting on me to catch my breath and catch up.
Did I mention it was steep?
Gorgeous, though. This is only part way up. It was so lovely.
Here I am, half-way up...
and that's where I have left to go. See the girl in pink? That's Kristianna.
This is the view over the other side. Big difference from the nicely green and cultivated other side, but stunning in its own way.
The three of us, finally all at the top. Yay us!
We had a picnic at the top, in the shelter of some of the bigger boulders and outcroppings. It was so nice to just sit and eat and visit.... Ahhhhh. The way back down was nice and leisurely, compared to going up-- although it was steep and slippery, thanks to the loose gravel. We made it back down with no falls or injuries (thank goodness!), and drove back into Aberdeen, where Laurie dropped us off. Man, what a day!