Admittedly, most people who complete the 3 Peaks Challenge aim to do it in 24 hours (ie. climb Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Mount Snowdon all in one 24 hour period). That’s a bit mad as well as difficult to organise, so we decided to do them in 12 months instead.
Last Sunday, we climbed Ben Nevis, thus completing our challenge. Despite being the end of May, the weather was terrible. On the way up we had rain which turned to hail higher up. Hail and gale force winds are not a good combination!
I’d heard there was going to be snow, but I had no idea how much. It looked like January at the summit. It was very cold at the top. My hands were freezing because my gloves were drenched, but it was still warmer to wear them than not to! Someone actually died of hypothermia on the mountain the very day we climbed it. He was a Frenchman, only 22. We saw the helicopters flying over the hostel where we stayed taking him to hospital. Tragic.
The following day we went to Loch Ness, with the intention of going for a swim. We knew it would be cold and I think we would have been able to deal with that if only we’d been able to get any distance out into the water. We tried, but the rocks were too slippery to get out past mid-shin depth.
At that point we needed to buy food and we were closer to Inverness than where we were staying near Fort William, so we decided to go there to get supplies because it meant we would have basically driven coast-to-coast across Scotland. On the way back we stopped at Urquhart Castle on the shores of Loch Ness to take some photographs (typically, the weather that day was much better than on the day we’d climbed the mountain). The Castle was closed but the views were great!
The next day we drove down to Glasgow to stay a night at the Youth Hostel there, which was a huge converted townhouse. Once we’d dumped our stuff, the idea was to go out for lunch then come back, shower and go out for the evening. That didn’t happen! We stayed out all afternoon and into the evening having a great time.
I had the best few days! Now to update my bucket list and plan the next adventure!