30 May 2014 was Frank’s 48th birthday and the tour planning we had done had a singular present in store for him: The solitary Munro hidden way back in Gleann Ach’Inns Challein where the Allt Kinglass rules and the sheep-hating poet Duncan Mac Intyre lived at Ais an t-Sithean: Beinn Mhanach.
But first we needed to get there. We parked the car at the large lay-by on the A82 where access to Auch Glen and Auch Farm is possible by means of a paved private road. After having got our act together we set off towards Auch Farm, crossed the West Highland Way and followed the track below the (probably) second most famous railway viaduct in Scotland.
The landrover track beside the wide Allt Kinglass allowed for easy progress and we made good headway on this very sunny day. Frank and I crossed the Allt Kinglass dryshod at several fords before we reached Ais an t-Sithean which nowadays boasts a few sheep fanks, a more or less derelict hut and a nice collection of ice age drumlins. Not extremely romantic but in the sunshine the spot was inviting enough. At a T-junction in the landrover track we turned right (east) and continued towards the bealach leading to Loch Lyon. Once the bealach was reached we took a short break sitting in the sunshine beside the tumbling burn coming down from the bealach between Beinn a Chuirn and Beinn Mhanach 450 metres further up.
Then we started to climb the very steep hillside towards this bealach following a more or less distinct path that unrelentingly winds its way beside the burn and over steep grass slopes towards the hill tops. After some considerable effort we reached the bealach and continued over easy grass slopes towards the plateau-ish summit of Beinn Mhanach. At the cairn we rested for a while in the bright sunshine enjoying the great views! Then – with nothing better to do but shopping for food in Fort William and driving to our cottage in … [Read More]