Well, I often ask myself the same thing, but there is never one answer. 'Because it's there' does encapsulate one urge - that to 'compleat' the munros a second time. Why do I want to do that? Well that's another essay I'm afraid. But it runs deeper than that. I NEED the hills, and it isn't important which ones usually. I am in a slow period in a mountaineer's season. There's not really any winter conditions yet, people are thinking of Christmas and the like, the nights are long, the weather usually unpredictable, so work is thin. January kicks off the Winter Skills training, so I will be very busy, but for now, I need to keep my fitness up and mojo honed by such days.
Of course, doing recces on hills I haven't climbed for decades is always useful, and it is entertaining to read my log from previous ascents. I think I remember so much, and yet I don't. Memory is an odd thing. I may remember a particular rock or view even, but the human aspects of the climbs are lost in all but my few words in the log. I found this a slog yesterday, and I did 13 years ago. I had a sore ankle yesterday, I did 13 years ago! I still came back. I still enjoyed it.
My pint last night tasted all the sweeter as it always does after a hard day. Had I stayed at home, despite always keeping busy chopping wood, doing long-neglected maintenance and more often than not fixing Lambrettas, I would not have felt the same. I get stir-crazy, my Rousseau-esque needs can only be satisfied by the outdoors, by adventure, by toil, by sweat.
Gulvain is set in wild and remote country, a finger of land stretching north from Loch Eil to Loch Arkaig, not often crossed by the public. It is 'dah dah daah' Tick Country as so amusingly but helpfully posted by the estate at the entrance marker post. As a solitary hill, not easily climbed in the pleasant circular trip that satisfies the senses, it requires a long walk (or rough MTB ride) in, and then a hard 850m straight up, before the same effort out. Purists and masochists only. But it ticks the boxes. It IS there :)