Sponsored Walk 2011

~ Sunday 10th July ~

Each year we organise a sponsored walk to support aid-projects for Tibetans. The proceeds go to Tibet Foundation, and the Free Tibet Campaign. This year we chose a circular route from Ballater taking us to Sgor Buidhe.

This was the Group's 18th Annual Sponsored Walk which raises funds for Free Tibet Campaign and the Tibet Foundation.  FTC is supported by a network of groups like our own and has volunteers working in its headquarters. Nevertheless it still needs, like any other political organization, paid staff and premises; it cannot operate without funding. Tibet Foundation helps Tibetans with their welfare and education and sustaining their religious practice, culture and way of life. We are asking the Tibet Foundation this year to use the money we send for the survivors of the earthquake in Yushu in north east Tibet

This year we chose a route from the WalkHighlands website. Beginning from Ballater town centre we took a path running parallel to the the railway line to the periphery of the town where we took the track leading uphill though the woodland plantation to Sgor Buidhe. The initial part of this is qute steep, levelling out near the highest point of the main track into an area with good views across the surrounding hills. Climbing further on a subsidiary track through a wood, we then came to a point with even better views. Continuing West we circled around, and descended to the West of Ballater, reaching the town via a wooded path which runs parallel to the A93.

Weather had been changeable for the few days preceding the walk,  and most of use were prepared for the worst that Scottish weather could throw at us. Fortunately conditions remained fine and dry for most of the walk, light rain commencing only on the very last leg back to Ballater, wherewe enjoyed a well-earned break with tea and scones in the Station Tea Room. Heading back to Aberdeen, we encountered a  major cloudburst which made driving conditions somewhat difficult. In fact, the rain, which had at first sight looked like a shower, continued for the rest of the day. I think we had been lucky to catch the good weather for the walk.
Numbers were fewer than on other recent walks, but we nevertheless enjoyed a good-natured banter for the duration of the trip, and I think everyone found the route to be a well-chosen one. On this occasion we were joined by three female students from Oman, visiting Scotland, who had expressed an interest in the work of our group. 

More pictures of the walk here

Other Walks: Glen Gairn ~ Loch Kinord ~ Forest of Birse ~ Clachnaben ~ Forvie ~ Pressendye ~ Baudy Meg ~ Scolty Hill ~ Pannanich Hill ~ Linn of Dee ~ Glenbuchat

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" Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can't help them, at least don't hurt them." H.H. The Dalai Lama