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Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn


Postby gld73 » Thu Oct 07, 2021 2:22 pm

Route description: Sgùrr a' Bhac Chaolais

Corbetts included on this walk: Buidhe Bheinn

Date walked: 05/10/2021

Time taken: 6.3 hours

Distance: 15.6 km

Ascent: 1370m

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Forecast was for the west side of the Highlands to be pretty good, maybe showers coming in the afternoon, but nothing too bad. There aren't many hills I've still to do from the A87 through Kintail / Glen Shiel, but I spotted that the corbett Buidhe Beinn can be done from that side (it's a shorter walk from Kinloch hourn but that would mean a longer drive for me, so I preferred the Glen Shiel start point) .... so off I went.

4 or 5 cars already parked in the large layby (used as a start point for a few hills), surprisingly busy for a Tuesday in October, though it was a lovely morning. The route I took up was the one described in the WH instructions for Sgurr a'Bhac Chaolais, the peak previously thought to be a corbett but demoted when resurveying put Buidhe Beinn as slightly higher with insufficient drop for them both to have the corbett status.
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Not sure why I started off by taking a photo of the hills I wasn't actually going up today?! (Faochaig straight ahead here, though I headed up the glen to the left of it). Shows what a beautiful morning it was though.

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Once I'd crossed over the wooden footbridge, there seemed to be 3 worn routes on the other side; I opted to take the middle one, though think they all met up slightly further up the glen. By then, as seen in this picture, it's one clear path to follow with the burn on one side and, at this point, a fence on the other, so hard to go wrong here. Sgurr a'Bhac Chaolais is up ahead, but Buidhe Bheinn not visible from down this glen.

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Looking back to the start point on the A87, not really visible but it lies at the base of Sgurr na Ciste Duibhe, the imposing hill across the way (on The Five Sisters route)

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I knew I was going to have to cross the burn soon, and was a bit apprehensive, it was quite a torrent of white water after recent rain

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...Fortunately where the path crosses it's on a short flatter section with stones to get across on (walking pole definitely helped for balance though), white water waterfalls further upstream and downstream of this point. Sgurr a' Bhac Chaolais is straight ahead, but the path swings left to zig zag up slopes out of shot in this photo

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The zig zagging path comes out on the ridge at the Bealach Duibh Leac where it meets the drystone wall. This is the view to the east, Creag nan Damh and the South Glenshiel Ridge ....

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...and this is the way I was heading, up to Sgurr a' Bhac Chaolais, from where I'd then be heading to Buidhe Beinn along that ridge heading off to the left

From Sgurr a'Bhac Chaolais it's not a particularly long walk to Buidhe Beinn, but it took longer than I expected compared to looking at it on a map or even seeing it initially from the Bealach Duibh Leac. There's a lot more up and down than I thought there would be, and zig zagging through and over rocks. It was quite a relief to get to the summit cairn.
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Heading from Sgurr a Bhac Chaolais to Buidhe Bheinn, I could see darker clouds over Ladhar Bheinn and Knoydart. I had a fleece and hat on by now, but it was still dry.

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South Glen Shiel ridge munros still clear of cloud

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The wide rocky ridge runs south east initially, before curving right to head south to Buidhe Bheinn. It looks a more straightforward walk than it is.

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Relieved to be getting nearer, and hoping to get there before the rain reached me

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The summit at last ... view north to The Saddle, Sgurr na Sgine and Sgurr a'Bhac Chaolais

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The ridge I'd just come along and was just about to head back along

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Zoomed to The Saddle (in the clouds) and Sgurr na Sgine

My return route was pretty much the same, though along the ridge I didn't go over the high point of every bump and crag as I knew better on the return leg where I was heading. I suspect my return leg to the car wasn't much faster than the ascent leg though, as by then the rocks were quite slippy and I had a couple of slips before deciding to slow things down. Even then, I managed to miss the path splitting near the end to cross back over the wooden footbridge and ended up at the ford (no way to cross it with dry feet today, so I backtracked up the bank to find the bridge) and then once back on the path on the other side, missed the nicer track I'd taken initially and took a path through high bracken - glad that the colder weather meant I wasn't a tick sacrifice in t-shirts and shorts at least.
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Although it had been a lovely sunny start to the walk, I'd taken a fleece, waterproof coat, hat and gloves just in case ... and just as well, I was wearing it all on the way back. This was now the 'view 'of the South Glenshiel Ridge as I headed back towards Sgurr a'Bhac Chaolais

APDC8055.JPG
Back at the the Bealach Duibh Leac and about to head down the path, glad I wasn't over there doing The Five Sisters or the Brothers ridges of Kintail now

A good day of walking overall; I can certainly think of quite a few munros which are easier days than this corbett!

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Re: Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Postby kmai1961 » Thu Oct 07, 2021 7:07 pm

This looks a great route, thanks for posting. I admit, I was not looking forward to that drive to Kinloch Hourn
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Re: Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Postby Jim777 » Thu Oct 07, 2021 7:39 pm

Damn, another reminder that I still haven’t been out to Buidhe Beinn. Did Sgurr a’ Bhac Chaolais from coming off Sgurr na Sgine. At that time they were considered the same height but of course they had to go and measure them with one at 885.21 metres and “the far end” at 885.5 metres. Still I suppose it’s an excuse to make my way back up there to that beautiful bit of country. 😭😭 Why didn’t I take the time to do it when I was up there - lazy sod that I am.
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Re: Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Postby iain_atkinson_1986 » Fri Oct 08, 2021 1:42 pm

Think I might have passed you just below Sgurr a' Bhac Chaolais as I did this same walk on 5 October. I was surprised to see how busy the layby was too for a Tuesday in October. The rain had started just as I was getting back to the car and Faochaig looked pretty clagged over by that point so I was glad I didn't add in Sgurr na Sgine after all.
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Re: Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Postby rockhopper » Fri Oct 08, 2021 2:14 pm

Nice alternative route to take, if a little longer. You certainly had changeable conditions - cheers :)

Jim777 wrote:Damn, another reminder that I still haven’t been out to Buidhe Beinn. Did Sgurr a’ Bhac Chaolais from coming off Sgurr na Sgine. At that time they were considered the same height but of course they had to go and measure them with one at 885.21 metres and “the far end” at 885.5 metres. Still I suppose it’s an excuse to make my way back up there to that beautiful bit of country. 😭😭 Why didn’t I take the time to do it when I was up there - lazy sod that I am.
Did the same as you when going along the ridge for the Munros - had to go back but went up from Kinloch Hourn instead :)
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Re: Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Postby BlackPanther » Fri Oct 08, 2021 3:57 pm

We did the very same route when climbing Buidhe Beinn. I had a splitting headache that day and Kevin suffered from consuming too much dairy, but it was still one of the best ridge walks in our career. I guess the best way to enjoy BB and SBC would be a full traverse from Glen Shiel to Kinloch Hourn with two cars (or a friend to pick you up on the other side).

The connecting ridge looks flat but it is actually quite a lot of up and down!
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Re: Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Postby jmarkb » Fri Oct 08, 2021 4:06 pm

rockhopper wrote:Did the same as you when going along the ridge for the Munros - had to go back but went up from Kinloch Hourn instead


Same here - held out in the hope that the survey might go the other way, so it ended up being our second-to-last Corbett.
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Re: Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Postby gld73 » Fri Oct 08, 2021 6:44 pm

iain_atkinson_1986 wrote:Think I might have passed you just below Sgurr a' Bhac Chaolais as I did this same walk on 5 October. I was surprised to see how busy the layby was too for a Tuesday in October. The rain had started just as I was getting back to the car and Faochaig looked pretty clagged over by that point so I was glad I didn't add in Sgurr na Sgine after all.

Ah yes, and I see you're in Inverness too - you obviously got yourself out of bed earlier than I did and got the benefit of the better weather as a reward :lol: Probably a good decision not to add on Sgurr na Sgine (or any of the other munros nearby) the way the weather went in the afternoon.

BlackPanther wrote:We did the very same route when climbing Buidhe Beinn. I had a splitting headache that day and Kevin suffered from consuming too much dairy, but it was still one of the best ridge walks in our career. I guess the best way to enjoy BB and SBC would be a full traverse from Glen Shiel to Kinloch Hourn with two cars (or a friend to pick you up on the other side).
The connecting ridge looks flat but it is actually quite a lot of up and down!

Yes, when I got to the bealach and had my first view of the ridge I thought it looked like a fairly easy walk, but I passed an earlier starter than me who was already on the way back (who I've now discovered is Iain, above ; I didn't expect to see anyone doing that same hill by the same route on a random October Tuesday!), and he said it would take longer than I might expect due to the rough and up/down terrain - and he was right. I agree though, it would make a great traverse through to Kinloch Hourn if transport wasn't an issue :D
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Re: Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Postby iain_atkinson_1986 » Fri Oct 08, 2021 7:05 pm

gld73 wrote:
iain_atkinson_1986 wrote:Think I might have passed you just below Sgurr a' Bhac Chaolais as I did this same walk on 5 October. I was surprised to see how busy the layby was too for a Tuesday in October. The rain had started just as I was getting back to the car and Faochaig looked pretty clagged over by that point so I was glad I didn't add in Sgurr na Sgine after all.

Ah yes, and I see you're in Inverness too - you obviously got yourself out of bed earlier than I did and got the benefit of the better weather as a reward :lol: Probably a good decision not to add on Sgurr na Sgine (or any of the other munros nearby) the way the weather went in the afternoon.

BlackPanther wrote:We did the very same route when climbing Buidhe Beinn. I had a splitting headache that day and Kevin suffered from consuming too much dairy, but it was still one of the best ridge walks in our career. I guess the best way to enjoy BB and SBC would be a full traverse from Glen Shiel to Kinloch Hourn with two cars (or a friend to pick you up on the other side).
The connecting ridge looks flat but it is actually quite a lot of up and down!

Yes, when I got to the bealach and had my first view of the ridge I thought it looked like a fairly easy walk, but I passed an earlier starter than me who was already on the way back (who I've now discovered is Iain, above ; I didn't expect to see anyone doing that same hill by the same route on a random October Tuesday!), and he said it would take longer than I might expect due to the rough and up/down terrain - and he was right. I agree though, it would make a great traverse through to Kinloch Hourn if transport wasn't an issue :D


I did Beinn Iaruinn the next day and my legs were feeling it from Buidhe Bheinn so it wasn't quite as early a start.

:lol:
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Re: Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Postby aaquater » Fri Oct 08, 2021 9:44 pm

In all honesty, it might seem less obvious, and certainly isn't straightforward, but I'd say the N approach to Buidhe Bheinn could be the best one. The W top is still a superb viewpoint (except when immersed in clag), but it can be reached from the main summit easily, and I found the descent from it down to Kinloch Hourn to be extremely tricky even in good conditions. (Sure enough, that might've been largely because I missed the path I was meant to find, but the very fact I didn't find it says something too...)
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Re: Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Postby Sgurr » Sat Oct 09, 2021 4:48 pm

We'd half thought of doing this the same way, but by the time we had done Sgurr a Bhac Chaolais it had clagged in, and that was considered to be the Corbett at the time. Completed on the Innses, but we knew they were re-measuring Buidhe Beinn, so the next day went and did it from the Kinloch Hourn end. Had put up a TR elsewhere and waited about a fortnight before it was confirmed as the Corbett, so glad our belt and braces approach paid off. Anyway, husband needed it, as he had "completed" on Ben Lair a month or so earlier, There must be loads of people whose final Corbett it is, but I still told the SMC it was Sgurr Innse, as he did Ben Lair, as they were at the time of completion. I must say Sgurr a Bhac Chaolais looked a very long way from the summit of Buidhe Beinn by the time we had trudged up there, so good for you.
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Re: Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Postby gld73 » Sun Oct 10, 2021 2:32 am

From all the comments (more than expected for a dull, uneventful walk report!), it seems Buidhe Bheinn has been a bit of a disobliging hill for a lot of folks, having to go back and get bagged in place of Sgurr a Bhac Chaolais :shock: :lol:
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Re: Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Postby BlackPanther » Mon Oct 11, 2021 4:59 pm

gld73 wrote:From all the comments (more than expected for a dull, uneventful walk report!), it seems Buidhe Bheinn has been a bit of a disobliging hill for a lot of folks, having to go back and get bagged in place of Sgurr a Bhac Chaolais :shock:


Must have caused many headaches as the actual Corbett summit wandered along the ridge :lol: :lol: :lol:

We had (well, still have) a similar issue with Creag an Dail Bheag (formerly Creag Liath). We climbed both Corbetts in 2013. About 6 months later, the summit of Creag an Dail Bheag was remeasured and moved from one end of the summit ridge to the other :roll: which we didn't visit, annoyingly! Nearly a decade later, we still haven't managed to repeat this route for the sake of the extra 600-700m of flat walking :lol:

And some say hillwalking is simple.
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Re: Buidhe Bheinn, from Glenshiel rather than Kinloch Hourn

Postby Sgurr » Mon Oct 11, 2021 5:09 pm

BlackPanther wrote:
gld73 wrote:From all the comments (more than expected for a dull, uneventful walk report!), it seems Buidhe Bheinn has been a bit of a disobliging hill for a lot of folks, having to go back and get bagged in place of Sgurr a Bhac Chaolais :shock:


Must have caused many headaches as the actual Corbett summit wandered along the ridge :lol: :lol: :lol:

We had (well, still have) a similar issue with Creag an Dail Bheag (formerly Creag Liath). We climbed both Corbetts in 2013. About 6 months later, the summit of Creag an Dail Bheag was remeasured and moved from one end of the summit ridge to the other :roll: which we didn't visit, annoyingly! Nearly a decade later, we still haven't managed to repeat this route for the sake of the extra 600-700m of flat walking :lol:

And some say hillwalking is simple.


You could always join the "If it was the summit when I climbed it, then I've climbed it" camp. Of course new complete hills can pop up like Ben Dearg on the Marilyns list near Cape Wrath https://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/Forum/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=90532. That is a whole different thing.
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