Saturday, February 07, 2009

So Soon ...

Can it be Six Nations time already ? And can it really be four years since our Murrayfield trip ?

And more to the point, can it only be this time last year that Wales went in at half-time against England hanging onto the ropes at 16-6 after a first-half battering, with Boks coach Jake White predicting the opening of the floodgates in the second half, before ten disastrous, error-strewn minutes saw England hand the game over ?

Not that I'm sanguine about today's game - you just can't tell with the Scots, capable of anything on the day and with a pretty good recent record against Wales at Murrayfield.

We're not going this year - because next weekend we're off to what will hopefully be the best Scottish skiing for twenty years or more. Snow is coming down by the ton over the Highlands - even Glenshee, the most extensive Scottish area but with (I think) the worst snow record, is plastered with the stuff. I've just checked the sites - Cairngorm's had another two feet at car park level, while snowploughs are still clearing the roads to the Lecht. At this rate we'll be looking to hire cross-country skis.

Trouble with Scotland is that since climate change kicked in, you can have good skiing one week and it can be melting the next - especially on the lower slopes like the Lecht and Glenshee, or the westerly areas, Glencoe (my favourite) and Nevis, where south-westerlies can bring rain. Only Cairngorm is high enough to keep its snow - and there the trouble is often high winds. But surely this lot can't all have gone by next week - especially given the forecasts.

Nonetheless it's been terrific value over the years - although most of the landlords have now realised that they can raise the house prices by a good 30% over half term. Seven or eight years back they still hadn't cottoned on - I used to budget £200 for a house, £200 for ski hire, £200 for lift passes - not bad for six people. It's a fair bit more now - not least because our children are a lot older.

Let's just hope we can find somewhere decent to eat !


Anonymous said...

Climate change - a terrible business, if this globalwarming gets any worse Im going to have the central heating up. Now where did I put my snow shovel, got clear the front path.

Laban said...

Be fair. I can remember climbing Ben Nevis in August 1975 and the top 2,000 feet was stormbound. Snow in the Highlands in winter would stay for weeks if not months.

When we went about 4 years back to Scotland it was the first time my kids had ever built a snowman, something we did every winter in the early 60s. It was this week before they were able to build one in their own back garden.

Anonymous said...

That, is a brilliant idea.

I was up in the Brecons this afternoon and it is a complete whiteout. There were people snowboarding and sledging down the sides of the mountains off the Merthyr-Brecon road.

I'm going to check that out. Flights to Dundee or Aberdeen and hire a car from there I guess.

I'm nearish to you UK-wise Laban, but wouldn't fancy driving all the way.

Any ideas on getting there?

Laban said...

We drive all the way on Saturday - a tad over 500 miles to Speyside from where we are. We've never tried flying 'cos we take too much stuff with us - snowboards, boots, sledges and the like.

Alternatively drive up on Friday night and stop en route at a cheap B&B or Travelodge in the Borders as we sometimes do. The nice thing about a Travelodge is that they'll let you in if you turn up at gone midnight. There's one at Burton services on the A6, or the Days Inn at Abington gives you a nice view of the West Coast mainline trains in the morning.

Laban said...

A6 ? M6.

Homophobic Horse said...

Wish I was there.