A private pool with a view


A perfect clear sky has coincided with a complete lack of child-ferrying commitments and enough daylight hours after work for an escape to the hills.

I’m the only person on the mountain and it’s still roasting hot at eight o’clock. I know that, almost at the summit of this hill, is a still, black and perfectly oval pool ringed with sphagnum moss and cotton grass.

And there I shall stay, looking out at the mountains of the Arrochar Alps, over to Ben Lomond and down the Firth of Clyde as far as Arran, until the midges, or the gathering darkness chase me back to civilization.

The imagined pool can never live up to the reality, especially when you are slogging up a mountain in the blazing heat. The pool tuned out to be shallow, and the black peaty bottom had heated the water to the temperature of a baby’s bath, so there was none of that refreshing tingle and gasp as I got in.

However the view from Ben Donich is one of the best, with a path that takes you past some fantastic rock formations, so the walk itself was very much worth it. And I might have not made it to the top if I hadn’t been thinking about plunging into that pool.

Access and route information from WalkHighland website.*
Ben Donich is a perfect mountain for a short day or an evening as the start at Rest and be Thankful is already at 200m. And added to that is that, despite the ease of access from Glasgow and all the delights of the mountain you hardly ever meet anyone on it.


* PPS: on any mountain come suitably prepared with footwear and waterproofs and always bring a map and compass and know how to use them