ny 016

We’ve tried camping for New Years before, but strong winds and an airborne tent meant we had to run away home on New Years Eve last time. We weren’t going to let a little bit of snow deter us this year. We loaded the car up with plenty of sleeping bags and blankets and headed for Scotland. We met up with some friends who were joining us and headed to Mennock Pass where we set up camp. Mulled wine, hot chilli, a campfire, fireworks (well a sparkler) at midnight, what more could you ask for!

Highest Village in Scotland

After a surprisingly warm night considering, we headed up to have a quick look at Wanlockhead, the highest village in Scotland before lazily making our way towards Dalbeattie, stopping off a few places on the way and to the relative luxury of a timber tent at Gorsebank. Ground conditions there confirmed that bringing the bikes was probably the right choice, it was a little icy. Definitely will be back later in the year with the bikes though, can ride to Dalbeattie straight from the doorstep and the timber tents were great. Hot soup, more chilli, books, a dvd (who said camping has to be basic!).


We had an unintentional long lie in the next morning – the little curtains over our little window were surprisingly effetive – before heading off for a little walk up Criffel. Crampons on from the car, I was quite excited at finally getting a chance to use them, they were a bought for a Scotland trip a couple of years ago where we never found any snow and ice. The views were great, over the water to the lake district, and views in other directions revealing themselves as we got higher. As I started to climb into the clouds, the wind picked up and the views disappeared. After a couple of steps sinking over my knees into the snow, I realised that although the summit was close, it might still take some time. Wary of our late start and knowing that the 360 degree views we’d wanted to see were going to be non-existent we decided to make our way back down, we’ll save the summit for another day. Back to our timber tent for soup and chocolate.

ny 030

It had felt colder this second night, so I wasn’t surprised for the thermometer to be reading -5 when we went down to the car at 10am. I donned my crampons to drag a trailer back up to the timber tent to haul our stuff back to the car, we had breakfast and set off home with just a quick stop to say hello to the sea. Everywhere was very white on the journey home, and we weren’t surprised to find the A66 closed so I slightly different route home. Saddleworth moor was very pretty.

New Year Photoset on Flickr