Auchineden Hill - 357m
Monday 18th April 2011

Weather/Conditions: Dull and dark, with city lights bright and the moors hazy. Warm air, a little wind and a couple drops of rain.
Distance/Ascent/Time: 4.7km / 180m / 2h 15m
Accompanying: Steve and Ali

I'd been up the Cobbler the day previously with Steve, and if that wasn't enough, he asked me if I'd wanted to go up the Whangie with him in the evening. He was going with Ali who's from Balloch, so she picked us up and we started out from the Queen's View car park quite late. It was getting dark already. The trip was a bit of a last minute thing: I'd grabbed a jacket on the way out, picked up the camera and drew a map on my hand with angles to various landmarks. Imagine if we had to get picked up by mountain rescue, I'd be ashamed! It all worked though.

The weather had been dry recently so the summit bogs weren't a great problem, and it was fun to walk up while everything went dark. The weather had given murky, warm air, so everything looked dull and desolate once the sun went away. When we got to the top we spent fifteen minutes at the summit just chilled. Good times.

We walked down to The Whangie and sat for a while on the rocks. We watched lights moving around the sky, actually getting quite freaked out by various unexplained lights - on the southern horizon, lights would rise vertically to hover in mid air, change between red and white, then move across the sky and disappear. In other cases a light would hover in air and fly off above at high speed. They originated from the southern skies, but a bit far north to be something coming from Prestwick Airport. I haven't a clue what the lights were, but quite weird they were...

And after the best part of an hour at the Whangie, we walked around the hill in the dark to get back to the car. I managed without a torch, just. And when we got down, we went to Balloch for a takeaway and ended up at Ali's. I was completely knackered when we arrived home, somewhere beyond midnight.

Times (Time relative to 0.00)
(0.00) 8.40pm Car park
(0.35) 9.15pm Auchineden Hill
(0.55) 9.35pm The Whangie
(2.15) 10.55pm Car park

Written: 2011-05-09