Assynt

It seems like a perfectly sensible plan. Fly up to Inverness and head to the far North West (Assynt) and climb the iconic Suilven and the Ben More. However, it didn’t quite go according to plan……

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Scotland - The Five Sisters

After two weeks of glorious sunshine in the south Dave E and Tav arrived in Scotland to find more typical Tav’s tour conditions; wet, grey and blustery. The ambition was to climb the Five Sisters of Kintail and with the weather forecast being slightly better on the Friday we set off with high hopes.

The walk took us up a stunning river valley, but soon the amount of water cascading off either side of the valley gave us a taste of the challenges to come. Within 20 mins of starting the weather deteriorated and full waterproofs were called for. After a long, scenic trek up the valley we reached a private bothy...

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The Lake District again

The best climber in the world is the one who is having the most fun

Wainwright was right

“The reason we haven’t started any major religions is because of the weather” And so the weekend started.

Never one to shy away from the important topics, this Tavs Tours excelled itself in tackling the big issues; the link between weather (or more technically climate) and religion, the third runway at Heathrow, Brexit, the state of UK politics and whether different types of jelly babies has different calorie contents.

Once again we were hosted very kindly by Dennis and Michelle in Braithwaite who claimed that they enjoyed having us despite us failing to understand why having 6 blokes descend on your house was enjoyable. As well as a lovely meal, they even joined us for a drink in the pub so we must have been doing something right (though being asked to participate in answering kid’s Trivial Pursuit questions was probably not what they expected....

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WAAT 4

If we don’t start walking we’ll never get anywhere

The WAAT4 Challenge

It was a stupid idea to start with and having finished it, it was still a stupid idea.

When Tav gently suggested we do a 40k charity walk through the Brecon Beacons in June a few foolhardy souls agreed. In aid of good causes - Mountain Rescue, Air Ambulance and Cancer Wales to name but a few, it seemed a noble journey.

Apprehension grew as to what we were going to do as the date approached but despite some half hearted discussion of whether we should go and do the 30k route, the fools that we were, boldly stuck to the 40k route. It was basically the same other than an extra 10k and one more big bloody mountain.

Friday evening found us gathering in the camp site after a variety of journeys - Dave H and Tav seemed to take the direct route and ended up with vegetation stuck on both sides of the Landrover. The tents went up....

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Ireland

Diddley, diddley, diddley

A trip to the land of Leprechauns

The first official Tav's Tour trip abroad took in a trip to Ireland.

We based ourselves in Killarney, a Disney version of Ireland. Every pub had musicians of varying talents playing to lure in the tourists from the coach tours. In most pubs we found bemused tourists nursing a half of Guinness. While the town may have been false the surrounding countryside certainly wasn't.

Day 1 took in two of the Highest Mountains in Ireland, in Caher and Carantoonhill. Having missed very obvious car park and parked on the side of the road (we usually get lost in the car park - this time we failed to find it), the start saw an immediate slog up a steep hill. Thursday's alcohol intake was pretty high so this was immediately hard work. Dave E was particularly feeling the strain (probably the third bottle of red) but as we neared the top of Caher....

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