Beinn a' Chreachain and Beinn Achaladair
by Redrock » Fri Apr 22, 2011 1:21 am
Route description: Beinn Achaladair and Beinn a'Chreachain
Munros included on this walk: Beinn a'Chreachain, Beinn Achaladair
Date walked: 18/04/2011
Time taken: 10.5 hours
Distance: 20.7 km
Ascent: 1270mRegister or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
Having had quite a few short days out I felt it was time for a rather longer walk taking in a couple of Munros. It proved to be a rather longer day than I had anticipated in the end! I'd had my eye on Beinn a Chreachain and Beinn Acaladair ever since Mrs R and I had climbed Beinn Dorain and Beinn an Dothaidh on a brillaint day in the autumn. Now it was time for us to tackle these other two Bridge of Orchy giants.
We set off to follow the Walkhighlands route from Achallader Farm heading northeast along The Water of Tulla.
We stayed on the track and made good time crossing the rickety bridge at Barravourich and were soon crossing back over the river by the footbridge about 2km up the road heading for the hills.
The ground was boggy and the path was poor until we had (almost) crawled under the railway. The walk up Allt Coire an Loachain was pleasant with the burn tumbling over layers of rock in stepped waterfalls and great views of Beinn Achaladair to the south-west.
After a while we reached the corrie and crossed the burn heading southeast up the steepening ridge towards the northeast ridge of Beinn a' Chreachain.
This proved to be one of the toughest parts of the day with rough ground and no path for most of the way. We did find a path higher up as we approached the ridge but we didn't see any sign of it lower down.
It was great to finally reach the ridge and Munro level and see the summit of our first Munro of the day shining in the sun above its rim of corniced snow. We could see two people up there with a dog but they were gone by the time we reached the summit.
Ascending the narrow ridge up to the summit was a delight, with great views of Lochan a'Chreachain to our right.
Soon we were at the summit cairn taking in the view. This was literally the high point of our day at 1081 metres but with the weather still fine and with us feeling good it was the high point in every way!
But we had, of course, to move on and we made our way westwards off the summit dome - warily at first as the ground seemed to curve away very steeply in front of us.
But soon we could see the slope ahead and we found our way through the rocky ground on useful paths and then to the grassy slopes below. The descent to the beallach and then the walk up onto Meall Buidhe was straightforward and soon we were descending down to 813 metres point where the climb onto the east ridge of Beinn Achaladair would begin.
I have to confess that from a distance the first part of that climb looked impossibly steep but I took confidence from the Walkhighlands description which said there was a path all the way - and there was! After some food and refreshments we headed off up the slope and were soon making height very quickly up the winding "goat path". It took different routes at times and there were a few bits of scrambling - but it was good fun and Mrs R did great for someone who hasn't always been that keen on scrambling. The great thing was we were soon 150 metres higher without it seeming that great an effort!
The ridge beyond that was really more a wide slope up to the summit ridge and we were soon up there taking in the view. I wasn't as impressed with Beinn Achaladair's summit as with Beinn a Chreachain. It it a long hummochy ridge with a few high points along the way - but the view of Loch Tulla was great.
By now, however, the wind was rising and a heavy, almost thundery, rain shower was falling over Loch Tulla and we felt it was time to press on, heading down. The descent from Beinn Achaladair over the south summit and down to the beallach was straightforward and on a good path.
I wish I could say the same about the route north beside the Allt Coire Achaladair. The path is heavily eroded and very boggy in places and progress was slow.
Then I slid awkwardly on wet slippery ground and pulled a muscle in my leg and that hurt! Progress was even slower after that! Eventually we arrived back at the car - the last car in the car park - with still some daylight to spare. It was a great day out but with injury time (both for me and for and old injury of Mrs R) it took us a lot longer than we had anticipated. The GPS said we had been on the move for 6 hours. Can we count that as our time? I don't remember being stopped for 4 hours of so - maybe we were going so slow it thought we were stationary! The injured muscle seems to be settling down a few days afterwards you'll be pleased to know (well I certainly am! )
by yokehead » Fri Apr 22, 2011 9:20 pm
Redrock wrote:The great thing was we were soon 150 metres higher without it seeming that great an effort!
I maintain that a scramble/steeper terrain and variety in ascent seems to give a height gain much more easily than if slogging up a featureless (boring!) slope. Perhaps just because it's more enjoyable.
As for your time, this was a day of long distance and a decent amount of ascent, nothing wrong with the time taken. Anyway, does the time taken really matter? The longer in the hills the greater the enjoyment, racing not required. Maybe your lost 4 hours were a time warp?
Hope you're both soon fighting fit for your next hills.
by ChrisW » Fri Apr 22, 2011 10:54 pm
by Bod » Fri Apr 22, 2011 11:27 pm
by Redrock » Sat Apr 23, 2011 9:58 am
by Oldman » Sat Apr 23, 2011 5:53 pm
- Posts: 113
- Joined: May 14, 2009
- Location: Cambuslang
by skuk007 » Mon Apr 25, 2011 2:00 pm
by Redrock » Fri May 06, 2011 1:04 pm
Oldman wrote:Who cares how long a walk takes as long as you enjoy it and get off the hill safely. I like to take my time to drink in the real beauty of our hills - the flora, the fauna, the scenery, the freedom etc.
I totally agree with you, Oldman. There's a lot more to mountain walking than getting it over and done with quickly! There is so much to take in and enjoy whilst climbing to the summits (and descending). I have, from time to time, been passed by fast walkers panting furiously and pouring sweat on their way up the hill! I'd rather take it at my pace and enjoy the whole experience more!
by jwramsay » Sat May 07, 2011 12:35 am
by rockhopper » Sat May 07, 2011 12:52 pm