As Andrea and I drove up to go walking we encountered a little slush which we drove through with nonchalance. A little higher up, more slush and a little ice in a couple of bends which we glided through and over without a care. Higher still there was a little snow, just a patch here and there and really nothing to worry about so we powered our way through that too. But then the patches of snow became more consistent until on the final stretch after a snowy bend, there was real snow and serious ice. No way was it possible to turn round, or reverse down without risking sliding over the edge or probably even possible, having had previous experience in such matters, to even stop without sliding uncontrollably backwards, so we carried on to the top. Conversation in the car slowed somewhat. Once at the top, having turned round and parked we found there was 40 cm of snow where we had envisoned perhaps 10 cm. So we had a dilemma. No way could we go down because of course having absolutely no intention of driving on snow I had no snow tyres, or chains or even a shovel and the ice was on close inspection nicely thick and slippery and the road down nice and steep and with a hair pin bend with relevant drop at the end of it. But then we had no gear suited to walking in knee deep show either, no snow shoes or the like. But it was either sit around for 3 hours until the ice melted on the road enough to enable us to go down safely or go for a walk anyway. So with Andrea, more of a wally than me, in thin cotton trousers (he doesn’t feel the cold like normal human beings) and no gaiters and me with gaiters but with a wonky leg (seriously dislocated my knee the other day) we set off for a walk anyway down to a house in a beautiful position overlooking the valley we had seen on previous trips. Actually I’m very glad we did because though not particularly adventurous, it was great morning. The walk was slow but the snow was pristine and glistening, well until the dog had charged and lollopped all over it anyway and it was all amazingly still and quiet.
After an hour or so of walking we sat under the portico of the house in blazing sunshine chatting and drinking hot tea out of a thermos and chomping of stuff and throwing logs for the dog until we thought the snow had melted enough to return to the car.