It's a bit weird this evening. I'm sat in the back of the Altguish Inn, a few miles west of Ben Wyvis, the Champions League final is on the one screen in this roadside pub. Opposite me, framed by a few of the hills through the pub windows, Dan is holding court as he avidly organises the next day of this enormous challenge. I laughed earlier, as Dan said to me, 'Tomorrow's a big day'. Where have I heard that before? And that is the point, even with the end in sight, every day is still a big day. A really big day.
The Fannichs are ticked off. Jim Lowden, saw Dan round the group in good time and the got them done with Dan appearing at the west end of Loch Glascarnoch at about 5pm. An emotional moment. Helen and the girls have travelled up through the day, and Dan was over the moon to see them. Helen and I will the share the driving of the van over the final few days of the challenge.
A massive thank you to Sue and Phil Clark for their amazing support and dedication over the last 11 days or so. They've been with Dan every step of the way, enduring his robotic morning routine and horrific foot damage management practices. On the drive up Sue rang through with a suggested shopping list; air freshener took priority. In a final hurrah, Phil even made it up a Munro today, much to his delight.
A whole host of others are 'in town' to support the final push over the next few days; Dan's parents (Dorothy and Jim), Aled Butler, Tom and Astrid and Martin Bagness (Bilbo). A few more are scheduled to arrive tomorrow.
An early start tomorrow as Dan pushes there and back up Ben Wyvis. The plan is for Aled to take the brunt of the cycle ride back up to the west end of Loch Glascarnoch, followed by a tricky route north ticking of 6 more hills up to Oykel Bridge. A mountain bike drop will see Dan with a short ride north to finish. The weather today was kind on the whole, with a little cloud on some of the summits. It looks like more of the same tomorrow, with maybe a drop of rain. Nothing like the weather encountered previously. But you know what they say, 'it ain't over 'til the fat lady sings' and she's not even here yet!