Happy Mondays: Week 9 - Preparation prevents piss poor performance, how I combined a wee running microadventure with scoping out a back-country ski film project I'm doing over the winter.
'Preparation prevents piss poor performance!' - well this week I killed two birds with one stone by doing detailed preparation of a site and finding something to do for my Happy Monday Microadventure. This winter Morrocco Media are making a back-country ski film based around Glenshee and I've been needing to head up to scope out some of the locations we will be filming to sort out access and filming points. This is important, because we do not want to waste time choosing poor access routes or filming points, both of which which will waste valuable filming time on the day and make everyone tired and grumpy, especially when the light is in limited supply, the weather will be cold and probably not that pleasant for filming in. Therefore, on the days we are filming we want to access the sites quickly, know what and where we are going to film from and with what cameras and what lenses so that we get the shots in the can as quickly and as safely as possible and get back to the cafe for a hot chocolate.
Therefore, this week I headed up Creag a Choire Dhirich to the west of the Cairnwell up at Glenshee to scope out the site and go for a bit of a run, bagging another Munroe - Carn a Gheoidh (probably one of the easiest I've ever been up). Luckily, the Perthshire boundary line follows the watershed along these hills, so I was in Perthshire all day with stunning views of the snow-clad Cairgorms to the north. These are some of the best views of the Cairngorms, especially when they are covered in snow, making the look even more majestic than they are. Perthshire is stunning, but you also get to enjoy the amazing views out from Perthshire.
It was the first really cold day of the Autumn as well, which made my run up the hill a bit more challenging with several more layers on than I've been used to recently. I chose to access the valley from A93 at the bottom of the valley, what a mistake that was. There was no path up the valley, apart from a patchy network of deer tracks, so I was bashing through squelchy moss and dense heather, constantly disturbing the grouse, deer and mountain hares. My auditory senses were filled with the sound of roaring stags and grouse for the three hours I was out microadventuring, which made a pleasant change from the whirr of my computer. Because it was the first proper frost of the year many of the stones in the burn were covered in a thin layer of ice, which just looked like a wet rock - I almost died skidding off one of the rocks when I crossed the burn, but luckily managed to do a pirouette and find my balance (be safe in the mountains, folks!).
After scoping out the valley from down below, I head up to the rim of the corrie and had a good look around before heading off on a very pleasant and gentle run to the top of Carn a Gheoidh, from which you get stunning views of the mountains to the North and West. The big braod summit is covered in a thin layer of Racommitrium moss, which makes a pleasant spongy and soft surface for running on. The run back towards the Cairnwell is even better, because it's predominantly downhill. I got all my final filming points established before heading down the Cairnwell to Glenshee Ski Centre. We'll definitely be using the chairlift to access the valley in the winter!
From the ski centre back to the car I went down the Old Military Road. It was waterlogged and my feet got wet and extremely cold on the way back to the car. Luckily I stopped off at the Glenshee Pottery for some hearty and very warming soup and cheese! Definitely worth stopping in there for a bacon roll and coffee if you are going up or coming back from skiing this winter.
If you'd like to talk to us about our adventures or projects, get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to hearing from you.