My trip in the Monadh Liath hills described in my post two days ago required a fair amount of effort and difficult walking. Below the snowline the ground was sodden, the 'paths' ribbons of mud and water. I squelched through the mud, stumbled over wet tussocks and slipped on wet rocks. Only the sight of the snow far above and the blue sky and sunshine kept me going. Despite wearing gaiters my feet were soon wet as my boots, old but comfortable, didn't stay waterproof for long despite being recently treated with wax.
Reaching the first snow didn't make the going any easier. In fact it became harder as the wet sugary snow collapsed under my steps, leaving me floundering knee deep and having to lift each leg high for the next plunge. My thigh muscles felt that the next day. Occasionally I hit rocks too, jarring my back and knees. At this point I wished I'd brought snowshoes or even lugged up my skis, which were now far below in my car.
Finally I reached the high snowfields and firm terrain across which I could stride out. Suddenly the effort of reaching here was forgotten.