Winter is never the easiest time for walking in the countryside, and the last few months have been a little more difficult than usual, as there have been many rainy days. Over the last couple of weeks it has not rained, but it has been very cold and we have contended with snow and ice. However, the Step it Up Strathdearn group is nothing if not intrepid, and we have not let the elements put us off walking.
Indeed one could argue that winter, with the temptation to tuck up by a fire, and indulge in the remainder of the Christmas chocolates and mince pies, is just the very time we should rouse ourselves to step outside for a good healthy walk.
Once one gets outside there are many pleasures. A brisk walk helps the circulation to speed up, and the clean cold air helps you to breathe deeply and apreciate our Highland air. Even the feeling of rain on your face creates a sense of freedom and enjoyment of the elements. On our last two walks however, the snow has lain crisp and even, although not deep; the sun has shone, and the world has been a very beautiful place. Walking back along the high track above Loch Moy, the Cairngorms come into view, and the sight of these pristine white peaks floating in a translucent blue sky is every bit as wonderful as a distant view of the Alps. Even a walk by the Findhorn after heavy rain gives an adrenaline rush as it rages along in its wild and abandoned way.
Enough of the poetry! Winter walks are so good for you in all sorts of ways: not the least being able to grumble about the weather and share your thoughts and feelings with others. Do come along and join us and try it. Wednesdays at the Hail at 1.30pm (at the moment) is the time and place. You can call Kathy or David on 511740 or Carol on 531220, or just turn up.