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A changed route to Sgurr Mor

A changed route to Sgurr Mor


Postby HighlandTrekker » Wed Mar 09, 2011 6:02 pm

Munros included on this walk: Meall a'Chrasgaidh, Sgurr Mor

Date walked: 05/03/2011

Time taken: 9 hours

Distance: 19 km

Ascent: 1100m

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Our original walk was to take in Meall a'Chrasgaidh, Sgurr nan Clach Geala & Sgurr nan Each which is the walk on here posted by Walkhighlands.. But as you will find out later the walk ended up being changed due to my insistence that crampons were not needed......

our_route.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts


So it was, we started from the parking area just passed the plantation on the A832.We got there at 8.45am and there was already 5 cars there so its best to get there early.
The Fannichs 05-03-11 (3).JPG
Parking Area
We headed down the road toward a gate and onto a track.
The Fannichs 05-03-11 (2).JPG
Beginning of track
After about a km on the track there is a new path on your left which crosses a bridge and takes you away from the boathouse next to Loch a Bhraoin and through the plantation.
The Fannichs 05-03-11 (5).JPG
The new bridge taking you away from the boathouse
SDC12436.JPG
The boathouse
This new path has been laid as there are plans to rebuild the boathouse. And it is a good option as the path past the boathouse is very boggy. At the end of the path is a bridge.
We crossed the bridge over the end of the Loch and started on the stalkers path. On the Walkhighlands route it says to go about 50m and turn off, but the track is only about 10m past the bridge. It is very boggy and has been made worse by the use of off road vehicles. This track does lead you to a bridge though which crosses the river (not on the os map) We didn't stay on the track long and decided to head up the west slopes of Meall a'Chrasgaidh.
The Fannichs 05-03-11 (10).JPG
The view from the western slopes of Meall a' Chrasgaidh
This was very hard going and it took us around 2.5 hours to reach the summit. We were rewarded with some great views though.
SDC12452.JPG
The cairn on the summit of Meall a' Chrasgaidh

After a quick respite at the summit we moved down to the col at about 810m and looked upto Sgurr nan Clach Geala. We couldn't always see the top due to the cloud hugging the summit but we decided it looked easy enough and headed up the northern slopes toward the 'ridge'...
SDC12458.JPG
On way down from Meall a' Chrasgaidh with Sgurr nan Clach Geala in the background

It was on our way up we passed another couple coming back who said that the snow up top was so hard and slippy they didn't want to risk going up to the summit without crampons......
Oh.... Our crampons were in the car.... We did go up and have a look but it really wasn't worth the risk, so we headed back to the col where we had lunch and revised the route.
A quick look at the map later we decided to take on Sgurr Mor instead. So after lunch we headed up to Carn na Criche.
The Fannichs 05-03-11 (23).JPG
View of Sgurr nan Clach Geala
This was a straightforward ascent with another descent on the other side before we finally started making our way up Sgurr Mor.
Due to the snow and ice this was quite hard going again as the path appeared and disappeared under the snow and where there was ice on the path it was quite slippy underfoot. The cloud kept coming and going and when we eventually reached the summit the cloud had almost completely disappeared and we had an excellent 360degree view..
The Fannichs 05-03-11 (23).JPG
View of Sgurr nan Clach Geala
After another short break we did contemplate going onto Meall Gorm or Beinn Liath Mhor Fannaich, but after checking the time and realising we had forgotten our headlamps as well as our crampons, we decided to head back to the car.
The descent from Sgurr Mor was as precarious as the ascent, but it was nice to almost step on a couple of ptarmigans...
We eventually got back to the col where we had lunch earlier and decided on the best plan of action. We decided to head in a WNW direction and see if we could find the track back (Bad choice). The descent was really boggy and wet underfoot and we both nearly ended up on our backsides on more than one occasion..... Between us there were 17 "Ooh's", 8 "Aah's" 11 "Whey's" and 1 "B*ll*x" from me as I slid into a wee burn.. :lol: It seemed to take an age to get back to the off road track we were on earlier and eventually back to the Loch. We were lucky to catch the sunset at the Loch whilst we washed off our boots and gaiters. A perfect end to a great day.
SDC12489.JPG
Sunset at Loch a'Bhraoin
The Fannichs 05-03-11.JPG
The sun finally sets
SDC12508.JPG
The track back to the car
We eventually got back to the car about 6pm.
Attachments
SDC12475.JPG
Sgurr Mor Summit
The Fannichs 05-03-11 (25).JPG
Summit of Sgurr Mor looking toward An Teallach
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Re: A changed route to Sgurr Mor

Postby malky_c » Wed Mar 09, 2011 6:08 pm

Brilliant Fannaichs photos 8)
I had a great day up there a little over a year ago but this looks even better! bit of a bummer with the crampons. I take mine in the most unlikely conditions as I'd hate to be turned back from a route for the sake of a short stretch of ice. Sadly carrying them all the time means I never actually need them :lol:
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Re: A changed route to Sgurr Mor

Postby HighlandTrekker » Wed Mar 09, 2011 6:36 pm

Yeah we almost went back after Meall a'Chrasgaidh but the weather was so good we didn't want to go home so early...
We went to Drummochter the following day and luckily took our crampons as we needed them again for about 100m... :D
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Re: A changed route to Sgurr Mor

Postby LeithySuburbs » Wed Mar 09, 2011 7:59 pm

Great photos and an enjoyable looking route despite the change of plans :D . Sgurr Mor is a fine hill I will return to some day and your route looks a good choice :) .
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Re: A changed route to Sgurr Mor

Postby yokehead » Wed Mar 09, 2011 8:33 pm

Great detailed route and fine photos. 8) What a stunning day you had and great outcome despite the route change. And a lesson in 'take it just in case' !? :lol:
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Re: A changed route to Sgurr Mor

Postby soulminer » Wed Mar 09, 2011 9:03 pm

Yes indeed some fine Fannaich images. Tend to keep my crampons in my bag till at least late April- been caught out before :)
Never done any of the Fannaichs in their winter plumage, but will think about it after reading your report 8) .
Cheers
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Re: A changed route to Sgurr Mor

Postby HighlandTrekker » Thu Mar 10, 2011 8:36 pm

I'm glad my report has inspired a few of you to get to the Fanniachs as it's really a great place...:-)
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Re: A changed route to Sgurr Mor

Postby FestinaLente » Thu Mar 10, 2011 9:31 pm

I agree, wonderful area, scenery superb, climbed all the Fannaichs September 2010 except the top Carn na Criche so a definite return for that and repeat some of the Munros. Like two nearby hostels also.
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