Sgurr Choinnich Mor

Roughly four years after Frank had bagged Sgurr Choinnich Mor in one go with Sgurr Ban and the Grey Corries, June 2016 saw us return to Glen Nevis so that I could bag the Big Mossy Peak as well. It was a damp and overcast day with massive clouds clinging to the Munros all the time, so when we set off from the parking at the Nevis Gorge we did not expect to enjoy panoramic views from the summit of Sgurr Choinnich Mor.

The approach path to the hill of the day was of course well-known to Frank and me since we had been there at least four or five times before. Nonetheless it is always worth the while to come back to this beautiful spot after a few years and to see the gorge and the hills again. As usual we made good progress and soon reached the flats where the Water of Nevis meanders. The Falls of Steall boasted quite some water since there had been no real shortage of rainfall the days before. Very white and very beautiful. We pressed onwards and soon reached Steall ruin where the path towards Carn More Dearg and Aonach Beag branches of to the left.

Now we made the first steps on new terrain but the path continued onwards in a steady fashion: Well-engineered, mostly dry and very easily angled. After another two kilometres on the path we headed for the hill walking on a faint grassy path that clung to a stream coming down the hill from the environs of the col between Stob Coire Beallaich and Sgurr Choinnich Beag. We gained height very steadily. Soon we had to make a decision as to whether we wanted to include Sgurr Choinnich Beag in the hike or head for the col between that hill and Sgurr Choinnich […]

2017-09-19T14:14:57+00:00June 16th, 2016|2012, 2016, 2017 - 2010, Loch Linnhe to Loch Ericht|

Beinn a’Chlachair

Gorillas in the mist? Well not exactly since there were no gorillas and we were not in Rwanda. But then: There was mist, there was the Moy Forest on the other side of the A 86, there were mountains all around. And there is a civilization encroaching on wild land in the form of forestry roads, hydro works and even the odd jogger on our route. But no Sigourney Weaver and no Diane Fossey.

Anyway. Years ago we had climbed Creag Pitridh and Geal Carn in quite appalling conditions. Strong winds, driving rain, no views. This time round we set Beinn a’Chlachair as our objective. We parked in the layby at the west end of Loch Laggan. Once outside the car we were attacked by midges, which meant a rather hurried start to the day.

We crossed the River Spean and took a left turn at the first fork of the forest road just before Luiblea. After a few metres a gate blocks the access to the Land Rover track on the right bank of the Abhainn Ghuilbinn. Once through the gate and on open land the Land Rover track climbs easily towards Lochan na Earba which is reached after maybe 45 to 50 minutes. On this track we were overtaken by a friendly jogger with whom we chatted a bit when we bumped into him again close to the Lochan. On the sandy shore of Lochan na Earba we took a break to drink and eat a muesli bar.

Refreshed we set our inner compass towards the bealach between Geal Carn and Beinn a’Chlachair. The climb beside the Allt Choire Pitridh is very comfortable since the path is well-maintained and easy to follow even in its upper section. Once at the Bealach Leamhain we decided not to climb towards the east ridge through boulders and over […]

2017-09-19T14:15:00+00:00June 5th, 2014|2014, 2017 - 2010, Loch Linnhe to Loch Ericht|

Beinn na Lap

3 June 2014 started out as a rainy day with drizzle and showers taking turns in raising the enthusiasm for hillwalking in remote hill country. But the Metoffice predicted a shift in the pattern and forecast nice weather with sunshine for the second half of the day. Accordingly the late morning saw Frank and me standing on the platform for the southbound trains at Tulloch Station.

The station is a nice building and it features a large roof which very conveniently protected us from the rain. In due course the train arrived; we boarded it, took our seats and bought our return tickets. The short trip from Tulloch to Corrour takes about twenty minutes. Loch Treig and the Eassins on the right-hand side, the very steep slopes of Stob Coire Sgriodain on the left of the track. Very scenic indeed. Then the train had finally climbed to the more open and level terrain of Rannoch Moor where Corrour Station came into view. There we disembarked, took a look around and then followed the Land Rover track towards Loch Ossian. We were accompanied by a dog, two horse riders and a cyclist who came from the Hotel at/in Corrour Station. There was even some car traffic on the track: Two Toyotas and a delivery van. Ahead we could see vehicles moving since some hydro works were under way.

Just before came to the shore of Loch Ossian we turned right and picked up the path skirting the northern slopes of Meall na Lice and leading towards Peter’s Rock. The boulder carries a memorial plaque for one of the wardens of the Loch Ossian Youth Hostel who died there one lonely winter. From the Rock we climbed uniform slopes of grass and heather until we reached the broad north-east ridge of Carn Dearg. As height is gained the […]

2017-09-19T14:15:01+00:00June 3rd, 2014|2014, 2017 - 2010, Loch Linnhe to Loch Ericht|

Sgor Gaibhre

3 June 2014 started out as a rainy day with drizzle and showers taking turns in raising the enthusiasm for hillwalking in remote hill country. But the Metoffice predicted a shift in the pattern and forecast nice weather with sunshine for the second half of the day. Accordingly the late morning saw Frank and me standing on the platform for the southbound trains at Tulloch Station.

The station is a nice building and it features a large roof which very conveniently protected us from the rain. In due course the train arrived; we boarded it, took our seats and bought our return tickets. The short trip from Tulloch to Corrour takes about twenty minutes. Loch Treig and the Eassins on the right-hand side, the very steep slopes of Stob Coire Sgriodain on the left of the track. Very scenic indeed. Then the train had finally climbed to the more open and level terrain of Rannoch Moor where Corrour Station came into view. There we disembarked, took a look around and then followed the Land Rover track towards Loch Ossian. We were accompanied by a dog, two horse riders and a cyclist who came from the Hotel at/in Corrour Station. There was even some car traffic on the track: Two Toyotas and a delivery van. Ahead we could see vehicles moving since some hydro works were under way.

Just before came to the shore of Loch Ossian we turned right and picked up the path skirting the northern slopes of Meall na Lice and leading towards Peter’s Rock. The boulder carries a memorial plaque for one of the wardens of the Loch Ossian Youth Hostel who died there one lonely winter. From the Rock we climbed uniform slopes of grass and heather until we reached the broad north-east ridge of Carn Dearg. As height is gained the […]

2018-10-21T09:36:34+00:00June 3rd, 2014|2014, 2017 - 2010, Loch Linnhe to Loch Ericht|

Carn Dearg

3 June 2014 started out as a rainy day with drizzle and showers taking turns in raising the enthusiasm for hillwalking in remote hill country. But the Metoffice predicted a shift in the pattern and forecast nice weather with sunshine for the second half of the day. Accordingly the late morning saw Frank and me standing on the platform for the southbound trains at Tulloch Station.

The station is a nice building and it features a large roof which very conveniently protected us from the rain. In due course the train arrived; we boarded it, took our seats and bought our return tickets. The short trip from Tulloch to Corrour takes about twenty minutes. Loch Treig and the Eassins on the right-hand side, the very steep slopes of Stob Coire Sgriodain on the left of the track. Very scenic indeed. Then the train had finally climbed to the more open and level terrain of Rannoch Moor where Corrour Station came into view. There we disembarked, took a look around and then followed the Land Rover track towards Loch Ossian. We were accompanied by a dog, two horse riders and a cyclist who came from the Hotel at/in Corrour Station. There was even some car traffic on the track: Two Toyotas and a delivery van. Ahead we could see vehicles moving since some hydro works were under way.

Just before came to the shore of Loch Ossian we turned right and picked up the path skirting the northern slopes of Meall na Lice and leading towards Peter’s Rock. The boulder carries a memorial plaque for one of the wardens of the Loch Ossian Youth Hostel who died there one lonely winter. From the Rock we climbed uniform slopes of grass and heather until we reached the broad north-east ridge of Carn Dearg. As height is gained the […]

2017-09-19T14:15:01+00:00June 3rd, 2014|2014, 2017 - 2010, Loch Linnhe to Loch Ericht|

Carn Dearg

1 June 2014 was my (Cord) 49th birthday and Frank had a special present for me in store: The four Munros of the Geal Charn Group from Culra. But first we needed to get there.

So the morning saw us unloading our bicycles from the car at Dalwhinnie station, shouldering our rucksacks, crossing the railway line and starting the long cycle trip to the bothy. The long track along Loch Ericht held nothing new for us since we had already used it the day before when we had climbed Ben Alder. Frank was out of sight quite quickly. My wobbly legs did not permit too much effort to be put into the 15 to 16 km leg to Culra. When I arrived there quite a while later than my companion it started to drizzle. Rats. It was to be only a short shower, however.

We then embarked upon the walk towards the Bealach Dubh which is on a very well-maintained path that makes progress easy. We skipped the Lancet Edge (my wish, a birthday has got to be good for something, you know) and soon found ourselves at the bealach which we crossed without a pause. Then we continued for a short while along the path down into the next glen. When we were past Sron Ruadh we quit the path crossed the stream and climbed into Coire a’Charra Bhig. This is a grassy corrie holding a burn with a steeply flanked bed in the upper corrie. Staying on the left bank of the stream makes life easier considerably for the wary hiker. Frank did so, I did not: another birthday present for me.

Once on the ridge we turned left (west) and headed for Beinn Eibhinn’s long curving summit ridge a kilometre away. There are two cairns on this level ridge and to be sure we […]

2017-09-19T14:15:01+00:00June 1st, 2014|2014, 2017 - 2010, Loch Linnhe to Loch Ericht|

Beinn Eibhinn

1 June 2014 was my (Cord) 49th birthday and Frank had a special present for me in store: The four Munros of the Geal Charn Group from Culra. But first we needed to get there.

So the morning saw us unloading our bicycles from the car at Dalwhinnie station, shouldering our rucksacks, crossing the railway line and starting the long cycle trip to the bothy. The long track along Loch Ericht held nothing new for us since we had already used it the day before when we had climbed Ben Alder. Frank was out of sight quite quickly. My wobbly legs did not permit too much effort to be put into the 15 to 16 km leg to Culra. When I arrived there quite a while later than my companion it started to drizzle. Rats. It was to be only a short shower, however.

We then embarked upon the walk towards the Bealach Dubh which is on a very well-maintained path that makes progress easy. We skipped the Lancet Edge (my wish, a birthday has got to be good for something, you know) and soon found ourselves at the bealach which we crossed without a pause. Then we continued for a short while along the path down into the next glen. When we were past Sron Ruadh we quit the path crossed the stream and climbed into Coire a’Charra Bhig. This is a grassy corrie holding a burn with a steeply flanked bed in the upper corrie. Staying on the left bank of the stream makes life easier considerably for the wary hiker. Frank did so, I did not: another birthday present for me.

Once on the ridge we turned left (west) and headed for Beinn Eibhinn’s long curving summit ridge a kilometre away. There are two cairns on this level ridge and to be sure we […]

2017-09-19T14:15:01+00:00June 1st, 2014|2014, 2017 - 2010, Loch Linnhe to Loch Ericht|

Aonach Beag

1 June 2014 was my (Cord) 49th birthday and Frank had a special present for me in store: The four Munros of the Geal Charn Group from Culra. But first we needed to get there.

So the morning saw us unloading our bicycles from the car at Dalwhinnie station, shouldering our rucksacks, crossing the railway line and starting the long cycle trip to the bothy. The long track along Loch Ericht held nothing new for us since we had already used it the day before when we had climbed Ben Alder. Frank was out of sight quite quickly. My wobbly legs did not permit too much effort to be put into the 15 to 16 km leg to Culra. When I arrived there quite a while later than my companion it started to drizzle. Rats. It was to be only a short shower, however.

We then embarked upon the walk towards the Bealach Dubh which is on a very well-maintained path that makes progress easy. We skipped the Lancet Edge (my wish, a birthday has got to be good for something, you know) and soon found ourselves at the bealach which we crossed without a pause. Then we continued for a short while along the path down into the next glen. When we were past Sron Ruadh we quit the path crossed the stream and climbed into Coire a’Charra Bhig. This is a grassy corrie holding a burn with a steeply flanked bed in the upper corrie. Staying on the left bank of the stream makes life easier considerably for the wary hiker. Frank did so, I did not: another birthday present for me.

Once on the ridge we turned left (west) and headed for Beinn Eibhinn’s long curving summit ridge a kilometre away. There are two cairns on this level ridge and to be sure we […]

2017-09-19T14:15:01+00:00June 1st, 2014|2014, 2017 - 2010, Loch Linnhe to Loch Ericht|

Geal-Charn

1 June 2014 was my (Cord) 49th birthday and Frank had a special present for me in store: The four Munros of the Geal Charn Group from Culra. But first we needed to get there.

So the morning saw us unloading our bicycles from the car at Dalwhinnie station, shouldering our rucksacks, crossing the railway line and starting the long cycle trip to the bothy. The long track along Loch Ericht held nothing new for us since we had already used it the day before when we had climbed Ben Alder. Frank was out of sight quite quickly. My wobbly legs did not permit too much effort to be put into the 15 to 16 km leg to Culra. When I arrived there quite a while later than my companion it started to drizzle. Rats. It was to be only a short shower, however.

We then embarked upon the walk towards the Bealach Dubh which is on a very well-maintained path that makes progress easy. We skipped the Lancet Edge (my wish, a birthday has got to be good for something, you know) and soon found ourselves at the bealach which we crossed without a pause. Then we continued for a short while along the path down into the next glen. When we were past Sron Ruadh we quit the path crossed the stream and climbed into Coire a’Charra Bhig. This is a grassy corrie holding a burn with a steeply flanked bed in the upper corrie. Staying on the left bank of the stream makes life easier considerably for the wary hiker. Frank did so, I did not: another birthday present for me.

Once on the ridge we turned left (west) and headed for Beinn Eibhinn’s long curving summit ridge a kilometre away. There are two cairns on this level ridge and to be sure we […]

2017-09-19T14:15:02+00:00June 1st, 2014|2014, 2017 - 2010, Loch Linnhe to Loch Ericht|

Beinn Bheoil

This was truly a tour which we had been looking forward to doing for a very long time. The remoteness of the hills. The great setting of the Geal Charn Group, huge and central Ben Alder and Beinn Bhoill as the whaleback ridge towering above Loch Ericht. All easily accessible from Culra bothy.

But wait: Easily accessible? Did we mention that remoteness has drawbacks and, hey!, that there was the long three-hour hike in from Dalwhinnie? Or for us, the more technology minded, the long bicycle ride from Dalwhinnie to Culra? We didn’t mention it? Ouch.

So the morning of 31 May 2014 saw Frank and me unloading the car: rucksacks, boots and bicycles. After all equipment was stuffed into the rucksacks and the bicycles prepared for action we crossed the railway tracks at Dalwhinnie station and set out on the 15 km ride towards the remote bothy. The dirt road was level most of the way and the surface was hard and flat. On the ride towards Ben Alder Lodge a small number of rises, one of them significant, need to be climbed only to experience exhilarating speed afterwards when cruising down back towards the shore of loch Ericht. At Ben Alder Lodge the track starts to climb for a kilometre or so and I for one had to be content with pushing my bike for a few dozen minutes. Frank cycled on being in good shape and enthusiastic. I met him again on the right bank of the Allt a’ Chaoil reidhe sitting in the grass quite some time later. On the opposite side of the river there was Culra Bothy.

We left the bicycles there and continued up the perfectly well-maintained path leading to Loch Bealach Beithe. After maybe 25 minutes the path reached a white boulder (mentioned by Storer) from which an […]

2017-09-19T14:15:02+00:00May 31st, 2014|2014, 2017 - 2010, Loch Linnhe to Loch Ericht|