996 m. |
Translation: Peak of deer, or other wild animals
Pronuncation: speet yan meealach
Gleouraich and Spidean Mialach had been high on my list of mountains I wanted to do ever since Frank had told me about his winter walk on Gleouraich. But then, such additional motivation would not really have been necessary given the beautiful scenery these two hills are set in. I had once been to Glen Quoich when we walked Ladhar Beinn from Kinloch Hourn. Now, on a windy morning in May, we returned to walk Gleouraich and Spidean Mialach. We started our tour of the two hills’ corries at the small parking close to the Allt Coire Peitireach. We took the stalkers path which for a few dozens of metres stays close to the burn and then turns west to climb the ridge of Sròn a’Chuilinn. The path zig-zags very nicely and after some intermediate steps in the ridge reaches a level section where the ridge’s western flank drops off very steeply right down to the northern arm of Loch Quoich. The wind was quite strong here and the wind chill made my face hurt. At the end of this south-north ridge at a point where it turns west to join the main ridge of Gleouraich we paused and had some sandwiches. We waited – sheltered by some rocks that had a memorial plaque fixed to them – until the snow shower subsided and we could continue up the final rise of about 200m in the ridge leading to the summit of Gleouraich. Before the path starts to climb it passes a well constructed hunters’ shelter. After another 20 minutes we reached the summit of Munro No. 1. The relative calm at Geouraich’s summit contrasted starkly with the very windy conditions encountererd on the lower slopes. Pausing at the summit cairn some photo opportunities arose while we had a few cups of tea and checked out the south Glen Shiel ridge with its seven munros strung out from east to west. Then, on we went to the second summit (1006 metres) accompanied by the occasional flurry of fresh snow falling onto the ridge. After about half an hour we reached the col between Gleouraich and Spidean Mialach from where we tackled the steep climb up the western ridge to point 977m, the ante-summit of Spidean Mialach. This being the last climb of the 2005 holiday we took our time but still it took us some effort to get to the more level section of the ridge. From point 977m we strolled on for another 500 metres unti we reached the summit of Spidean Mialach with its wind shelter where again we rested for some food and tea. We soon felt the cold and decided to abandon the summit and make our way back to the warmer glen. Following traces of a path from the summit we proceeded in a south-westerly direction, crossed the considerably boggy flats around the Allt a’ Mheill and picked up the stalkers path there which took us back to the lochside road and to our car. A cold and windy but nonetheless beautiful day in a remote part of the Highlands. Great ridge walk!
Description Gleouraich and Spidean Mialach form a fine ridge on the north side of Loch Quoich. The north side of this ridge above the Easter Glen Quoich Burn and the headwaters of the River Loyne is a succession of fine, but very remote corries which may be the haunt of red deer, but are seldom visited by climbers. On the south side of these mountains the slopes are more open and grassy. The accessibility of these two peaks from the road along the north side of Loch Quoich makes them popular, and the ascent is made easy by an excellent stalker's path.Leave the road at the foot of the Allt Coire Peitireach and follow the stalker's path onto the west ridge of Gleouraich. Traverse this peak and its lower top, Craig Coire na Fiar Bhealaich, and continue across the col to Spidean Mialach. Descend south-west past Loch Fearna and reach the road above Loch Quoich about 2 kilometres south-east of the starting point.