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An Caisteal and Beinn a'Chroin

An Caisteal and Beinn a'Chroin

Postby EuanWardrop » Sun Sep 20, 2020 10:30 am

Route description: An Caisteal and Beinn a'Chròin, near Crianlarich

Munros included on this walk: An Caisteal, Beinn a' Chròin

Date walked: 19/09/2020

Time taken: 8 hours

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With great weather forecast for most of the country on Saturday the hardest part was trying to pick what hills to go for! We settled on these two of the Crianlarich hills, we had thought about Ben More but it sounded a bit of a steep slog.

Arriving at the car park for 8 it was getting busy already as clearly people were determined to enjoy this unseasonal weather. We set off up the good track under the railway and began to climb steadily. Finding the second gate we cut off onto the hill proper and immediately found ourselves in a bog! This was pretty slow going as the hill rises steeply and the conditions underfoot were not helping. We took plenty of small breaks and were pleased to see the views back towards Tyndrum as we gained height.
Cooper in silhouette

After about an hour or so we gained the ridge and a firm rocky path which was a great relief! The path continued to rise steeply but given the much better ground we were making much better progress and it didn't feel anywhere near as tiring as the initial part of the hill. It undulates a bit over the ridge of Twisting hill before the cleft is reached. There is a bit of scrambling to get back up to the path but nothing too taxing. The path then goes round to the left of an outcrop and it is quite exposed but the path is in good condition. A little more uphill and we reached the summit, around about 11.15 but we had had a few breaks and one longer one before the cleft. The views here, and for the whole day really, were incredible, we could see up to Nevis and as far west as Cruachan. The wind had really picked up on the summit so we found some shelter to have a bite to eat and began the drop down to the bealach towards Beinn a'Chroin.
AC Summit.JPG
An Caisteal Summit

Pano from An Caisteal

The path down is very steep and rocky and there was a few times that hands were needed to steady ourselves. My knee also decided to start hurting a bit so I borrowed dad's walking poles to help lessen the load on the downward parts. It was a relief to reach the bottom of the bealach and Cooper celebrated by jumping in the lochan here, he got a bit more than he bargained for as it was deeper than expected which led to him getting a dunking as his head disappeared under the water for a second :lol: :lol: :lol:
AC Descent.JPG
The descent down from An Caisteal

We then started to climb up to Beinn a'Chroin, this was also very steep. The path was good with a few big steps. We came to the section of scrambling mentioned in the WH guide. This was a bit awkward trying to get Cooper up but we managed easily enough. Dad had a look at the bypass route but he didn't really like the look of it. After this it was a straightforward enough walk up to the main ridge. As we traversed the ridge we met a couple coming the other way, the man was clearly in some pain and limping along. We stopped to chat and dad gave him his walking poles to try and help them get back, we agreed to meet back at the car park.
Scramble coming up

BC Summit.JPG
Summit of Beinn a'Chroin, Cooper more interested in dad's roll than the camera!

We carried on and dropped down before the final bit of ascent to the summit at the end of the ridge. We stopped for another roll and Cooper found a couple of other dog pals to play with. The views were still epic and looking over to An Caisteal was excellent.

Pano from An Caisteal

Setting off down the ridge of Beinn a'Chroin was good going to start but still quite steep. Eventually this flattened out and we were into another bog. We had been told by people coming up this way it was boggy but we were hoping it wouldn't be as bad as it sounded....it was worse! The whole "path" was saturated and after a short time both my feet were soaking. It was a case of trying to pick the best spot and hoping your foot didn't sink in too much! All three of us failed in this at one point or another and I think Cooper was the only one enjoying this. He was loving splashing about in the mud! Mercifully after about an hour of this we made the track which ends at the small dam. Cooper went for a paddle to get clean and from here it took us around an hour to get back to the railway. We were waiting for the couple with the poles so I went for a dip in the river which was very refreshing, though a little on the cold side! :lol:
Cooling off

Dad went back up the track to see if he could see them and eventually we seen them coming back down the track, glad to see they were back in one piece!

A brilliant day on a great couple of hills with some incredible views!
View North.JPG

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Re: An Caisteal and Beinn a'Chroin

Postby maxie23 » Sun Sep 20, 2020 2:55 pm

Cracking report.
Loved the photo of Cooper with his eyes on your dad's roll.
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Re: An Caisteal and Beinn a'Chroin

Postby jameshardy » Sun Sep 20, 2020 6:11 pm

Met you guys at the foot of An Caisteal descent at the bealach - cracking day.
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Re: An Caisteal and Beinn a'Chroin

Postby cobblergreen » Sun Sep 27, 2020 6:36 pm

Another good report and some great pictures :)
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