1039 m. |
Translation: Gaelic gairdean, meaning a shoulder, arm, hand
Pronuncation: myowl girday
It was a rather cloudy day with the occasional prolonged spell of rain. Initially we had intended to do Meall Buidhe and Stuchd an Lochain but – can you believe it – we drove the car to the wrong dammed loch in Glen Lyon: Not Loch an Daimh but Loch Lyon where it took us about half an hour and 200m of climbing before we realized that we were heading anywhere else but Stuchd an Lochain. Oh my! At least we met a very friendly and nosy lamb that climbed with us much of the way 🙂
So, back at the car our options definitely needed some reconsidering to be done. Since we had proven our route finding ability to the maximum already we decided to go after a less difficult task and moved from Glen Lyon to Glen Lochay via the private hydro road. Well, we did find the parking and starting point for the Meall Ghaordaidh hike alright!
On came the protective clothing and off we went from Duncroisk along the right-hand bank of the Allt Dhuin Croisg. The going was good on the track leading up the grass slope. Soon we crossed the dry-stone wall using a stile and then the track continued up the hill. After maybe 20 minutes we found the point where the path leading up the broad southeast ridge of Meall Ghaordaidh begins close to a metal pole rammed into the dirt. From there on it was a monotonous slog up a boggy, grassy and ill-defined ridge. The path was easy to follow but higher up it divided. I chose the left branch, Frank the right branch and we lost sight of each other in the fog and clouds. But soon our ways reconverged and we finally reached the rockier section further up which heralds the end of the “bog slog” and the beginning of the final climb to the summit. In pouring rain we climbed these last 300m over minor bands of crags and rocks. Then, finally, we reached the summit with its large windbreak the presence of which was very welcome since not only did it rain there was also a strong gusty wind.
We ate our sandwiches and then set off again heading back to the glen. First, however, we tried to catch some glimpses of the steeper slopes of the hill above Glen Lyon but to no avail. Nothing but clouds and fog. Ach! The way back was pretty identical to the way up. We met quite a few groups of walkers and chatted a bit with some people. What else can you do on such a bland hill on such a dreich day? Then, when we were almost back at the car park, just as we climbed over the dry-stone wall the saddest thing of the whole hillwalking holiday happened: We saw a sheep lying on its side, legs shivering for half a minute and then it was dead. The lamb which was with the sheep could not make any sense of this of course. Poor thing! But what can you do? We were back at the car after less than four hours all in all. Our stuff went into the boot and we drove to Killin to stock up on provisions for our cottage in Glen Lyon.
This was a day that will not be remembered for the hill-walking fun or the scenery, believe me. But at least it meant we have one more Munro in our kitty and we had done some really stupid things navigation-wise at the start of the day. Would you trust me or Frank to be your guide in the hills after THIS?? LOL!
Max elevation: 1041 m
Min elevation: 94 m
Total climbing: 1006 m
Total descent: -1046 m
Total time: 03:43:26
Description Meall Ghaordaidh rises between Glen Lochay and Glen Lyon about 9 kilometres north-west of Killin. It is an isolated hill, being quite far from its neighbours the Tarmachans to the east and Beinn Heasgarnich to the west. On its south side overlooking Glen Lochay it has grassy slopes rising from glen to summit at a uniform angle. On the north side above Glen Lyon there are two prominent spurs which give the hill a more interesting appearance, but the hill is less frequently climbed from that side than from Glen Lochay.The usual ascent starts from the road 4