On a mission to recce a river, on crunchy gravel under a crystal clear, nearly full moon, camping in tree shade, present and correct for the letterbox vista. The Ben Alder massif! Through the grind and the slop, following the snaking line of the Pattack until the gorge and beyond, freewheeling the banking curves to Loch Laggan. Past grabbing mechanicals fetching the old growth to a squally pitch for whisky and tea. At four the second morning, winter arrived. By ten we abandoned our hopes of an elegant round and made for the road. Freezing hands and colder toes, puffing and blowing the ups, floating the downs. If it's this good in winter, imagine the spring!