Auchineden Hill - 357m
Saturday 24th January 2009

Weather/Conditions: Cumulus clouds and blue sky. Some spits of rain but otherwise sunny. Very cold up high - made using the camera hard work, a lot of underexposed images came out as a result.
Distance/Ascent/Time:5km / 170m / 1h 55m
Accompanying: Josh

Another nice circular walk around Auchineden Hill and another chance to try out the camera. Josh and I headed out from the car park with Dad behind. Many of the Loch Lomond hills were in cloud, but the Luss Hills were out and mostly under snow cover and in sun they made for some nice views. We headed up beyond the stile and onto the high moors where more snow lay. Up here a biting wind blew across the tops from the west - cold enough to make me not want to go any higher than this modest hill and as a result, the camera was hard to work. Although an SLR wouldn't have the simplicity and ease of a point and shoot, it was a price I was going to pay because it's sure good to get pictures that are of good quality. The one exception is if the weather really is dreadful. If I'm going to get no views then the small camera becomes the most appropriate option.

I also got to try out my new camera case - a LowePro TLZ Mini. Instead of carrying a camera bag over my shoulder which is inconvenient, this camera case can be fitted to a rucksack waist belt. Its out the way when it's not needed but right there when I want to pull the camera out. A lot of the shots from this came out underexposed but it's something I've got to work on. I ran into the same problem on Beinn Ime on the 31st December, but it's usually because I want to keep sky detail. Unless I buy a filter there's few practical ways to get around that...

Josh and I headed over the bogs up to the trig point. I didn't know where dad was but we just headed off our own way, and walked down to the Whangie, where I got photographs - I've never taken pictures of these rocks before. However nothing of great quality came out, but nevermind.

We left the Whangie and headed around the side of the hill, taking the track back to the stile where we stopped at the rocky outcrop for five minutes. Dad had phoned ten minutes before and he was back at the car so it was now simply a case of walking back and meeting him. I wondered what it would be like on the Luss Hills today - the snow was awfully low and if only the skis had been clear, a nice day could have been had on Beinn Bhreac and Tullich Hill. These two hills form the northern Grahams in the Luss Hills and look straight across to the Cobbler and other Arrochar Alps summits. Climbing Tullich Hill, Beinn Bhreac along with Ben Reoch on a crisp winters day is certainly one of my plans and it would certainly make for a beautiful day, should weather permit.

Future plans aside, we headed down the final section to the car park where dad waited for us in the car. It had been a nice walk around this hill, with some contrasting views across to Loch Lomond - sun on one side, gloom on the other. Auchineden always has a lot to offer me for a hill that looks like a bog heap, whether its views or visiting the Whangie...

Written: 2009-01-26