Fiona

Cairngorms Women Contributions

Fiona

I am a visitor who is looking to move to the area.  Any time of the year.  We like to walk, cycle and cross country skiing.  We visit throughout the year.

We have found the forest trails are pretty good for cycling as they drain well.

2004? I hated it! I hated hills and outdoor pursuits.  It was cold and wet. brrrrr

It would have to be either the Rothiemurcus forest or the route from Glenmore Lodge to Ryvoan Bothy.

Generally quick drying tracks covered in pine needles and that pine tree smell.

Spending the last 6 Christmases has been pretty special. We even attend the local church on Christmas morning to celebrate.

My husband.

During a 45 mile cycle we became lost and quickly realised we were against the clock in terms of daylight hours and available food.  We were both scared towards the finish point and ‘hitting the wall’……never been so happy to see the main road at Coylumbridge!

I am always very aware of the smells.  The air smells clean, like you just want to breathe lots of it in.  You can also smell the nature; the wood, plants and rivers.

I have more confidence in what I can achieve.  I am no highly skilled walker by any means however, I have come a long way since my first visit in 2004.

Its the beautiful views and smells that make you realise you are far far far away from the city and the ‘rat race’

I always return feeling healthier.  I opt not to wear make up when im out and about as I want to feel as natural as the beautiful place I am in.

We have been known to grab a torch and go for a wander in the dark.  Looking up at the stars and seeing a whole different place in the dark, its a real treat!

I guess we have experience of the area as we have been going for so long now but in the early stages we would often have to turn back on walks/cycles as we had got it wrong and were on a track to nowhere.  Its also an added extra when you stumble across a new track, more adventures waiting to happen.

I went for a short walk through the forest, not on the mountains.  Its an even more peaceful place at night.  Your senses really do come alive when there is limited light and noises you don’t recognise.

In the spring/summer, the heat from the sun really sets off the woodland smells and that feeling, something good is coming.  A positive feeling as summer is upon us.  In autumn/winter, there is nothing better than the feeling of getting all wrapped up and hearing the crisp leaves underfoot, then, heading back for a hat bath and a pint in the local……………….

It makes me appreciate the beautiful natural things offered to us.  I love that I can explore on foot or bike or even skis and challenge myself whilst experiencing some true beauty.