A Walk for Ali
Sunday 24th April 2022
The brief was to plan a walk in Ali’s memory that was not too difficult in order to be as
inclusive as possible.
Well, it was very inclusive, as 21 DHC-ers signed up for the walk. Susan, Ruth, Bob, Jane,
Paddy, Linda, Robert, Sandy, Irene, Anna, Tony, Alan, Alison, Sandra, James, Peter, Kathy,
Iain, Eileen, Gail and myself (and Dan the dog). I also received apologies and kind words
about Ali from Tim, Gordon, Graham N, Graham R, Chris, Althea, Geoff and Gillie.
Fortunately, I consulted Paddy about which hill would be suitable and he had the great idea
of Carn na Drochaide, partly because it looks onto Beinn a Bhuird which was the first outing
that Ali had planned for DHC and is a not too challenging Corbe9. Not only did he send the
route, he and Linda also reccied it the week before our walk! and more later from Paddy...
Group shot before heading up the hill.
After a coffee stop en route we headed to the summit with the weather getting brighter all the time.
After lunch at the summit Susan read a poem she had received from Ali.
Perhaps they are not the stars, but rather openings in Heaven
where the love of your lost one pours through and shines down on us
to let us know they are happy......
Just remember to look up
.....and Paddy explained further the reason for this hill – that he had led a DHC walk here in
2017 with Ali on the walk (and some of today’s walkers).
Paddy doing his spiel
We also toasted Ali with a dram
….and then had a lovely leisurely walk down to the Quoich valley with wonderful views of the aforementioned Beinn. A couple of golden plovers were spotted by our resident bird watcher. We had a previously seen 2 big brown hares on the way in.
With the sky getting bluer all the time we finished off pondering the wonders of the Punch Bowl before heading to the Bothy in Braemar en masse for tea and cakes.
A good day was had by all with lots of chat and catching up and fond memories of our hill pal Ali.
I leave you with Paddy’s photo of Ali and some others on Carn an Drochaide in 2017.