El Presidente's review 2014-15 

This winter season has been, without a doubt, the finest period of weather for as long as I have been with the club. Conditions have been superb, and it's hard to think of a Club Sunday where the sun and snow have not been present. This has been reflected in the number of people going out on Sundays. On average we have had about a dozen stalwarts for each outing.


Our first Club Weekend was in May on Skye, at the Slig Bunkhouse, and as usual, this was well supported. The weather could have been kinder, but we seem to say that every time we go to Skye! Nevertheless, a number of cracking hills were climbed, including Sgurr a' Mhadaidh, Sgurr a' Ghreadaidh, Sgurr na Banachdich and Sgurr Mhic Choinnich. On the Sunday a group headed up to the Old Man of Storr, whilst others headed down to Glen Shiel and climbed A'Chraileag and Mullach Fraoch-choire. A few others headed over to Raasay and Plockton. Great weekend!


Over the summer months a number of folk met up and completed hills in Strathfarrar, Mullardoch, Knoydart and Glen Affric, so pretty active.


October saw the club head up to Inverness Youth Hostel. Another great weekend! Loads of hills bagged by the troops, from Slioch to Beinn Alligin, Maoile Lunndaih to Mullach Clach a' Blair. Campbell and George did four hills up at Strathconon and managed to get back in time for George to demonstrate his Gaelic singing abilities in a bar at the MOD! Also a slight mishap on the way home with Bob forgetting to turn off for a pre-arranged meeting with the boys... missed the turn-off by about 20 miles, I believe! Tea and scones at Bruar as an act of contrition.


At Christmas we  were at our usual venue, the Koh-i-Nor, for our annual festive curry night. Maybe not as long in the Bon Accord as in previous years!!


The February weekend at Kinlochleven was particularly well supported. This year, in a departure from our normal Burns Supper theme, the committee decided to provide an Italian meal, which was well received by the trrops. The meal was followed by an entertaining quiz, during which a 'degree of cheating' was allegedA great venue with easy (too easy!) access to the local pub. Cairn Ban disco divas were giving it big licks at the gay disco, and a great time was had by all. In terms of hills, the weather was 'iffy' to say the least. A group headed up to Na Gruagaichean in very difficult conditions, whilst another group took on the 'Pap'. Enjoyable days were had by all, and it was particularly pleasing to see Bob on the hill again. All in all, another successful weekend.


We were now fully into the winter Club Sunday season, which I mentioned up above.


A few incidents to note:


  • Alex Meikle completed his round of Munros on Sgurr a'Mhadaidh.

  • Davy Gray completed his round of Grahams, also on Skye, on Beinn Dearg Mor. 

  • Paul Pror climbed Mont Blanc and Gran Paradiso.

  • Sheena and I climbed Mount Rysy in Poland.


Just a couple of other things. A number of members continue to go to the climbing wall at Ibrox on a Wednesday night, and anyone interested is free to pop along. We also made a trip to the Indoor Climbing Centre at Ratho on one of the very bad-weather Club Sundays - a great day and highly recommended.


Alex Haken continues his crusade to get more of us into more serious climbing, and regularly puts out requests via the club FB page for participants (novice and experienced), and I would urge anyone who is keen to take him up on his offers.


Finally, a vote of thanks to the committee for their support and hard work over the year, especially in creating and serving up the Italian Extravaganza at Kinlochleven.


So that's it. Another busy, successful year with Cairn Ban. Here's hoping for another great year next year.


Stuart McKie