Only few places in Scottish hillwalking evoke such unanimous feelings of wonder and marvel as does Glen Etive. Glen Coe is grand. Glen Shiel has its looong South and North Ridges. Glen Torridon is second to none and the upper Glen of the River Dee is a class of its own. Yet, Glen Etive has its own very special character of remoteness and loveliness. And it harbours one of the great one-day tours of the Highlands: The round of the Glen Etive Five: Ben Starav, Beinn nan Aighenan, Glas Bheinn Mhor, Stob Coir an Albannaich and Meall nan Eun.
Doing all of these in one go had become a minor obsession of Frank’s and me since we first read of the idea which is mentioned in Ralph Storer’s “The Ultimate Guide to the Munros – Volume 2: Central Highlands South”. Of course we did not need Mr Storer’s benediction to set about doing this great round but it helped that he mentioned this as a slightly silly extension to an extension to an extension of a great day in Glen Etive.
So hell-bent as we were we left out car at the lay-by of the Glen Etive single track road, crossed the River Etive by the bridge provided and reached Coileitir in no time at all. From there we followed the path across the boggy grass to the Allt Mheuran which we crossed and then followed the path up this burn to the foot of Ben Starav’s famous north ridge. Me having bagged Ben Starav in early spring 2001 at the time of Foot-and-Mouth Disease I opted to skip this beautiful hill. So Frank and I said Good-bye to each other. Frank continued up the great north ridge of Ben Starav. We had shaken hands that we’d meet later in the day and do four of the five hills together. I on the other hand continued on the path by the Allt Mheuran for a kilometre or so and then followed another path beside the … [Read More]