924 m. |
Translation: Peak of the notches
Pronuncation: skoor nan ayg
This was to be the day of a great outing in the Cuillins. Sgurr nan Eag, Sgurr Dubh Mor and Sgurr Alasdair in one go. So with a lot of energy we started our hike from the public car park close to Glen Brittle camp site. We passed the toilet block of the camp site and climbed up the path leading to Coir’ a’Ghrunnda.
At some intersection we missed the upper branch of the path and so we finally got to the flattish area where the Allt Coir’ a’Ghrunnda has already emerged from beneath the great slabs. Admitting navigational defeat we climbed the great glacial slabs (real fun, impressive terrain), headed in a northerly direction and rejoined the path leading to Loch Coir’ a’Ghrunnda 150 m higher up. Once on the path we followed it through a jumble of big boulders to a final rising on a rocky section by the Allt (optional scambling) and strolled into the bowl of the marvellous corrie. Pausing for a few minutes we took in the views which were obstructed by low clowds most of the time, however. Passing the loch on its northern side we than continued up very bouldery terrain (rough, rough volcanic rocks – my gloves and my trousers suffered a lot) to the beallach north of Caisteal a’ Garbh-choire, climbing through a rock window just at the beallach. A cool terrain for sure.
Then we bypassed Caisteal a’ Garbh-choire on the north side and headed due south up the ledges of the south/southwest ridge of Sgurr nan Eag. This was an entertaining climb/scramble of sorts, with the path appearing and disappearing in the clouds and mist. The wind had picked up considerably and some precipitation had made the rock slippery. On we climbed over one, two or three false summits until we reached the highest point of the hill. We rested in the lee below the summit for sandwiches and tea and exchanged a few words with a couple of friendly English walkers. Unfortunately there were no views to be had from Sgurr nan Eag. So soon we headed back north, reached Caisteal a’ Garbh-choire and embarked on the rocky scramble up Sgurr Dubh na Da Bheinn. This was great fun and even though the weather did not get any better the climbing was excellent. Alas, too soon the summit was reached and we headed west towards Sgurr Dubh Mhor. Routefinding was a problem and we poked around in the mist trying to find the right access to Sgurr Dubh Mhor.
Using some slippery ledges we reached a spot where some exposed move was called for to make progress up the hill. But we shyed away. The rock was slippery, the visibility was very low and some strong gusts of wind did their share in discouraging us from pressing onwards. So, after some hithering and tithering we retraced our steps to Sgurr Dubh na Da Bheinn without having climbed Sgurr Dubh Mhor. Another setback and another chance to come back to this great mountain range. From Sgurr Dubh na Da Bheinn we felt our way through the clouds to the Beallach Coir’ an Lochain whence we boulder-hopped down to Loch Coir’ a’ Ghrunnda. A truly enjoyable descent for me but Frank did not like to jump from one unstable boulder to the next. The surface of the boulders was so pitted and rough that there was hardly any chance of slipping when jumping from boulder to boulder. Unfortunately we had already lost a lot of time. The visibility was still quite bad. So we decided not to climb Sgurr Alasdair by its south-west ridge but to get back to Glen Brittle by our way of ascent. We paused by the shore of Loch Coir’ a’Ghrunnda and marvelled at the surrounding walls of rock and boulders. A very nice spot even though the hill tops were invisible and low coulds filled the bowl of the corrie from time to time. Then, tearing us away from the beauty, we descended the entertaining path we had come up the hill and headed for Glen Brittle and our car.
A day of several setbacks as regarded our ambitions of bagging some Skye Munros but also a day of outstanding natural beauty and a day presenting us with fine scrambles on exceptionally rocky terrain. Great!
Max elevation: 936 m
Min elevation: 2 m
Total climbing: 1403 m
Total descent: -1460 m
Total time: 09:00:20
Description These two peaks are near the southern end of the Cuillin. Sgurr Dubh Mor is not on the Main Ridge, but a short distance east of it near the top of the famous Dubhs Ridge which rises from the shore of Loch Coruisk for 900 metres to give one of the finest climbs in these mountains. The climb leads to Sgurr Dubh Mor and onwards for a short distance to Sgurr Dubh an Da Bheinn, which is on the Main Ridge at the head of Coir'a'Ghrunnda. Sgurr nan Eag is about 1 kilometre further south along the Main Ridge.The approach to these two peaks from the Glen Brittle camp site goes up the Coire Lagan path for a short distance then branches right across the moorland to the foot of Coir'a'Ghrunnda. The path goes up this corrie on its west side close under the rocks to reach Loch Coir'a'Ghrunnda. Go round the south side of the loch, climb east up a steep stony path to reach the Main Ridge and go