Odd weather

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In a bid to counter suggestions that our current unseasonal chill is unusual, Hamish Johnston (Letters, 31 July) provides us with an example of the cold weather experienced by mineralogist Professor Forster Heddle whileclimbing in Sutherland on one July day in 1878.

My husband has a clear memory of climbing perhaps the finest mountain in the Cairngorms, Braeriach, in a total whiteout one July day in the 1980s.

Conditions were atrocious, but he and his companions were hardy souls who accepted nature’s ferocity with cheerful resignation.

When they’d battled through the storm and had descended the mountain, they then tramped along the shores of Loch Morlich amidst sunbathers soaking up the heat from a blazing sun which had failed to penetrate the thick, low cloud base at the top of the mountain.

I’m sure that if Forster Heddle was a well-seasoned climber of Scottish mountains he would not have been at all surprised to find himself and his companions drenched and shivering on the top of high peaks in the north-west region of Scotland, even in July.

Beinn Spionnaidh and Cranstackie are the most northerly mountains in Britain.

On the other hand, had that gentleman returned to St Andrews to find the beach there shrouded in a chill mist, with a wind bending the trees low with an unseasonal ferocity, I think he might have been rather bemused by this apparent reversal of the seasons.

Carolyn Taylor

Wellbank

Dundee

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