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Beinn Alligin not so alone!

Beinn Alligin not so alone!

Postby grantbagsmunros » Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:21 pm

Munros included on this walk: Sgurr Mor (Beinn Alligin), Tom na Gruagaich (Beinn Alligin)

Date walked: 27/09/2020

Time taken: 4 hours

Ascent: 1200m

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Thought I'd stick up a walk report to mark being over 70% through my Munros and Munro top adventures at 360 total Munro tops. Starting to feel like I'll finish soon and that's worrying!

Up in Contin for a long weekend and the weather proved too good to not get a Munro or two in. I'd been eyeing Beinn Alligin for a while and had watched the Munro Show (90s?) where they walk the route East to West taking in the Horns first. I reckon this is a great way to do it as you're nice and fresh at the start where things are a bit more difficult.

First view of the ascent

The route started with a local shouting at two chaps for parking on the verge. To be fair to them, there was a passing place 5 metres away so they weren't holding anyone up. I jogged in the first 2.5km (why did I wear boots?) until it steepened. The ascent is surprisingly straight up and well worn!

Looking at future adventures

You quickly gain views out across Torridon. I was quite glad to have ascended this route on a sunny day!

Ascent to the first Munro, just have to pass the horns!

The first views of the horns. Exciting. I spotted a couple ahead, I don't know why but this always makes me walk faster. Plus I wanted to get in front to catch views of them descending the horns. Little did I know there were plenty folk out.

Past the first Horn and watching others navigate it

Glad to catch them descending. In my opinion this one was actually the hardest to descend as there were a few overhanging bits. Fun though.

Looking on to the final Horn

Onwards to the next horn which was a fun scramble up. I did a tricky move under a ledge then got up and saw a much easier route up. Doh. Spotted some guys coming down from the final horn which looked fun. Descending from the second one was quite tricky with a few routes. I did a kind of zig-zag to get down but it did require turning into the rock.

Watching the guys ascend the second horn as two others skirt around it

Looking back I saw the guys ascending it with ease. Another pair skirted around it. To be honest, the rocks felt much safer than any sloping grassy ledge but each to their own!

Love having people for scale!

The guys on the second Horn. Chuffed to get this shot. Thanks gents!

Baosbheinn looks stunning. One day!

The views out from here are stunning. I love how barren the Northwest is. Descending from the final horn was fun. A good bit of decision making. At one point I considered lowering down a chimney only to find out from two ladies later that they were watching my descent and willing me away from that route! Senses prevailed and again I picked a zigzag route down.

Watching folk ascent the 'first' but my last Horn

Looking back on the epic horns. I won't be forgetting these any time soon. Some really fun mild scrambling and the odd spot of light exposure. Brilliant. From here on it was an easy walk onto the two Munros.

Torridon ya beauty

Looking back over the fun part of the hike. Great to see so people enjoying the hills. Always love having a wee chat with people as you cross paths. At the top I chatted to a local who could see their house from the summit. I couldn't help feeling envious. Despite hiking alone I felt quite sociable!

Whoever this looked so chuffed!

My last picture before I put my camera onto a stupid setting! I caught someone taking in an epic view. From there I walked / half-jogged over the final Munro and down the path. I was quite happy to be descending a nice gradual well made path. Made for a rapid descent.

I was chuffed to get the route done in under 4 hours despite all the chatting to walkers and photography and be off to pick up my partner who had patiently been waiting in a cafe! I'd definitely recommend going East to West as it's easier to descend the well made path.
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Re: Beinn Alligin not so alone!

Postby jmarkb » Thu Oct 01, 2020 9:41 am

Great report!

grantbagsmunros wrote:I'd definitely recommend going East to West as it's easier to descend the well made path.

Interesting! - until doing it again recently I would have agreed: going anti-clockwise the ascent is more steady and more interesting, and the views ahead on the approach and descent are better. However on my last visit I went clockwise and did the Na Fasreidhnean ridge instead of the main path up the corrie, which is really nice (a few scrambly bits, but nothing harder than the Horns). Doing the Horns clockwise means that more of the scrambling is uphill, which makes it a bit easier (or at least it makes finding the best line a bit easier). So now I'm not sure - both ways have their merits, and either way it's a fantastic walk - possibly my favourite in Scotland!
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Re: Beinn Alligin not so alone!

Postby Dunblane Bagger » Mon Oct 05, 2020 1:21 pm

Did these in winter and from my experience on the day easier route was talking in the Munro's first and then ascending over the horns last.. More ascent on the horns than descent which in winter makes more sense.

However, I don't think it matters which way you do the circuit as it is a truly breath taking part of the world and to be amongst Alligin in all her glory at any time and in whatever direction you choose is stunning. Just stunning.

Looks like you had a great day, and a great time too !
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Re: Beinn Alligin not so alone!

Postby litljortindan » Mon Oct 05, 2020 2:53 pm

Four hours is pretty fast but it's a long time for someone to wait in a cafe for you!
Possibly my favourite Scottish hill so always interested to see a new report. I'd probably agree with you about the east-west traverse being better but I was actually just thinking of the views. Mind you, that is borne of the days when I could actually do that route fairly easily and would have been thinking of late afternoon or evening light. To fit in with my wife's schedule these days I am more likely to be there in the morning and theoretically would be interested in the sunrise or early morning light so wanting to face that way. So maybe will change my mind and route in the unlikely event that I do the full traverse again.
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