About a week ago I climbed up my first mountain, together with my roommate.
Going to the Highlands (or something close to it) was on top of our "must-do" things in the exchange semester in Scotland.
We decided to set out for "Ben Vrackie" (841m). Easy to reach with public transport from Dundee and equipped with a well-maintained footpath, it seemed like a good first mountain to climb.
When we got out of the train, Ben Vrackie really didn't seem to big. But closer and closer as we got to the mountain, the more it seemed to tower way above the rest of the nearby landmarks. It was at this point, when we talked about heading back our climbing a nearby hill. It just seemed impossible to get up to the top. Already, we were dizzy and out of breath, without even being close to the bottom of the mountain.
But just heading back without hitting the mountaintop just didn't seem right. So we slowly kept approaching the mountain and when we were at the feet we decided to just do it - while being really, really careful.
Despite being a relatively easy footpath, our hearts kept pounding as we got higher and I started to feel dizzy.
I observed the people going a few hundred meters in front of us. They seemed to go very slow, but steady, so I urged my roommate to slow our pace too.
This seems to have been a good decision, together with the often breaks we took.
Soon after this moment, rain started to hit us. Changing directions with the wind, the raindrops soaked us from every side. Extra careful not to slip, we continued.
The next steps can be described as almost meditative. Going in the same pace, one foot after another, we continued up the mountain. The rain kept going and coming back, but I didn't really care. Setting one foot after another and looking after my mate we walked and walked.
Eventually we realized that the peak was coming soon and a wave of euphoria started to roll trough my body.
Trying hard to be careful and not to just run up the last few meters, we made the last steps until we reached the top.
The view from above was breath-taking. I found it hard to capture the scale we felt in an image, but I think it shows a bit in this picture, I took when climbing down.