The Saddle

On 14 June 2016 we had something very special on the agenda. Special because the tour included the first Munro I had ever climbed: The Saddle, in 1993. And special, too, as the day would see us climb Sgurr na Sgine the only Munro that had seen me turn back from it twice, both times in driving snow in winter 1997/1998. So I was utterly determined to finally bag the Hill of the Knife 18 years on.

We started the hike at the layby on the A87 in Glen Shiel and followed the path leading to the foot of the steep north-east ridge of Faochag. Once we had crossed the Allt Mhàlagain we turned right and headed towards the path leading up to Meallan Odhar. I admit that was a somewhat spontaneous approach but we had been too bloody stupid to pick the old military road earlier on. Ok, no harm done. Once we had reached the Meallan Odhar path it was a steady plod up this hikers’ highway until finally the shoulder between Biod an Fhitich and Meallan Odhar invited us to have a break and to drink some water. The view towards the Forcan Ridge and the Saddle was to die for. But dying was not high on our list of things to do. So instead we continued on the path bypassing Meallan Odhar’s summit which leads to the foot of the Forcan Ridge.

What can you say? The first time I had been there was in 1993 also with Frank. The climb up the ridge had been a dance up the crest. The Forcan Ridge still was real fun to climb in 2016. Its steepness, sharpness and exposure making it a great scrambling experience and I was glad that we had included The Saddle as a non-essential extra repeat Munro in this tour. No self-respecting bagger would have climbed Sgurr na Sgine alone without doing the Forcan Ridge, or would he? We made progress steadily and reached the summit of Sgurr nan Forcan in due time. Frank ahead … [Read More]

2017-09-19T14:14:57+02:00June 14th, 2016|1993, 2016, 2019 - 2010, Loch Eil to Glen Shiel|

Ladhar Bheinn

Rather fair day with sunshine and some clouds. Start from Kinlochhourn with 10 km walk to Barrisdale on the coastal path along beautiful Loch Hourn. After short rest at Barrisdale ascent of Stob A’ Chearcaill over Creag Bheithe ridge. Some good scrambling up the narrow ledges before the top. From the Stob over the main ridge (up and down) of the mountain around Coire Dhorrcail to summit of Ladhar Bheinn. Over north-east ridge the descent south-west into Coire Dhorrcail lead to stalker’s path to Barrisdale. Return to Kinlochhourn by coastal path. 33 kilometers, 1830m in height, 12 hours, hurting knees. Extremely interesting and rewarding hill-walk. Toughest walk I did so far (1998-12). Only to be recommended to the fit. Would do it again any time. Me too.

2017-09-19T14:19:29+02:00September 1st, 1993|1993, 1999 - 1991, Loch Eil to Glen Shiel|

Sgurr Mhor

1991 1st Munro ever. Wolfgang and i did the complete traverse from Tom na Gruagaich to Sgurr Mhor. Since we were that inexperienced we missed the steep pull first – we thought that it was too steep but we stood corrected later. I recalled that we walked in shorts and in 1991 the Tom wasn’t a Munro yet. Thanks to SMC that happened 1997 when they decided to remeasure. Black Cleft is really a dramatic gully just before Sgurr Mhor. We bypassed the Horns … as we would 2 years later. I still wonder why.

Well that was my 1st Munro ever. This was how it started.

1993 Complete traverse of Beinn Alligin from Sgurr Mhor to Tom na Gruagaich. Bypass of the Horns. Good visibility. Cleft directly after the Sgurr quite impressing. First DH (Doppelhorror).

2019-01-02T22:08:58+01:00September 1st, 1991|1991, 1993, 1999 - 1991, Coulin and Torridon|

Tom na Gruagaich

1991 Traverse from Tom na Gruagaich to Squrr Mhor. We left the actual ascent to Tom on the left – it couldn’t be, it’s much too steep – we wanted to climb the Toll a’ Mhadaidh Mor first. Then however came the insight that this was even a worse idea: it was much steeper. The ascent was really very, very steep – i thought – maybe because it was one of the first mountains ever I climbed in Scotland. In 1991 Tom was not yet a Munro. Very nice the fissure in front of Sgurr Mor. We bypassed the Horns on a slippery, narrow path. Well, that’s how it all started.

1993 New Munro in 1997 revision. Complete traverse of Beinn Alligin from Sgurr Mhor to Tom na Gruagaich. Bypass of the Horns. Good visibility. Cleft directly after the Sgurr quite impressing. (Cord had the most severe knee problems I’ve ever experienced with him – he even backed Tom down on all fours)

2019-08-21T03:37:14+02:00September 1st, 1991|1991, 1993, 1999 - 1991, Coulin and Torridon|