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Conival & Ben More Assynt
by BlackPanther » Mon May 09, 2011 2:07 pm
Route description: Ben More Assynt and Conival
Munros included on this walk: Ben More Assynt, Conival
Date walked: 02/05/2011
Time taken: 7 hours
Distance: 16.6 km
Ascent: 1200m4 people think this report is great. Register or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
We left our car at the car park near the Inchnadamph Hotel. We walked a short distance north along the road, past the bridge over the River Trallgill and then turned right to a private road. This took us well into Gleann Dubh. After crossing a gate we continued along the glen. Views were great from the very beginning.
Quinag and Loch Assynt from the car park:
Looking back to the track down Gleann Dubh, with Loch Assynt in the distance and the bulk of Quinag to the right.
Into Gleann Dubh:
When we reached the bottom of the first hill, Conival, ground became steeper and quite boggy. I imagine in bad wet weather this path must be a nightmare!
The path up the slope:
After gaining some height I stopped for a moment and looked behind me. And as always in Assynt, I saw familiar shapes...
Pano to the southwest:
The path zigzagged steeply up to a small hanging valley below the bealach between Conival and Beinn an Fhurain. There are lovely waterfalls just to the right. On higher levels the white quartzite cliffs of Conival are simply stunning!
Climbing again! Steep or not steep, who cares!
The cliffs of Conival:
The view from the hanging valley:
OK, the first part of the journey completed!
...and that's the second! What awaited us now was a short scramble up the white boulders and scree to the bealach.
Don't worry, folks, it's an easy scramble. Once on the col, the rest of the route to the summit follows a well-worn path, although the amount of scree can be a bit annoying.
We took a 5 min break on the col and simply enjoyed the scenery...
The Cul Mor-Cul Beag-Stac Pollaidh complex still drew our attention:
Hello, can you see me? Suilvan peeking out from behind Canisp:
Views to the northeast were even better. Here, the unusual shape of Beinn an Fhurain:
Ben More Assynt revealed for the first time:
We got on going...
...and soon arrived on the ridge - only to taste some more views of Assynt. Like this one - Quinag in the distance:
The summit of Conival:
The ridge between the two Munros:
Sutherland Munros on the horizon - Ben Hope (left) and Ben Klibreck:
The ridge path:
First look down at Braebag:
Just below the summit:
After a short walk along the ridge we found ourselves at the top of Conival - only to discover that somebody was already there:
The crows weren't very eager to leave the summit:
Wow! Got there a tlast!
Looking back along the ridge with Quinag in the distance:
Distant hills: Ben Stack (left) Arkle and Foinaven (middle), Meall Horn (right)
A few days later, when I processed our pictures, I tried to figure out exactly which distant hill was which - and I came up with this little sketch. Correct me if I got anything wrong...
Taking lunch break inside the summit shelter:
Steep, steep sides of Conival:
Cup of tea and a sandwich - and we were on the move again. The final part included tackling the narrow ridge between Conival and Ben More Assynt. It may look scary from above but there's nothing technically difficult about it, especially in good weather.
Time to go:
Wait! Wait for me!
As we descended along the crest, more stunning views came in sight:
Looking up to Ben More Assynt:
Back to Conival:
The summit of BM Assynt was very windy but I quickly forgot about the gusts just staring in the distance. It was Assynt and Sutherland again, seen from a completely different perspective...
Looking south along the ridge of Ben More Assynt:
Conival from Ben More Assynt:
Me by the cairn:
Loch Shin and Ben Klibreck:
That's an interesting rock sticking up there
Hmm, my dad would certainly have a heart attack!
Soon it was time to head back to Conival...
...and then down the way we came.
We waved good bye to the rocky cliffs:
...and walked down the boggy path back to Gleann Dubh:
The bulk of Conival from the glen:
By the time we arrived back at the car park, tree shadows have moved and we found our car bathing in sunshine Might have been nice for the car, but certainly not for us (50*C inside - felt like an oven ) Thanks heavens for air conditioning
So, another fantastic day with unforgettable views. Fingers crossed, all coming sumer will be just as good
by Stretch » Mon May 09, 2011 2:45 pm
by Alastair S » Mon May 09, 2011 4:02 pm
by IainG » Mon May 09, 2011 4:48 pm
Like you said, Assynt hills are completely different from anything else. A particularly enjoyed this pair, and done it in similar conditions. A fine pair of munros coupled with a great walk.
by skuk007 » Mon May 09, 2011 4:58 pm
I must admit those two look like the rockiest Munros I've seen to date, care needed at all times I think.
by HighlandSC » Mon May 09, 2011 5:26 pm
Like the shots of Cul Mor (where I was this day), shows the corrie in it well. Much better than the usual shots from the road side.
I think Canisp and Suilven would have been blocking any view of the fires from here that day, and I guess any smoke got lost in (or created) the haze over that way.
by gammy leg walker » Mon May 09, 2011 7:56 pm
Only kiddin BP another top notch report.
Any chance you could lend me some of your good weather for this weekend
by NevJB » Mon May 09, 2011 8:27 pm
by nathan79 » Mon May 09, 2011 9:59 pm
I was up those two last September. Above 600m nothing but cloud and hellish winds. No views at all. The ridge between the two looks good in nice weather, but in low visibility and horribly strong gusting crosswinds it was a bit different. Maybe it was good i couldn't see how far down i'd get blown off!
I'll hopefully be making a return visit this year.
by ChrisW » Mon May 09, 2011 10:10 pm
by BlackPanther » Tue May 10, 2011 10:21 am
Wish I could magically make the good weather last... for all of us... Especially for the first week of June as we're off to Isle of Skye. Last year we planned a few Munros there, ended up getting flooded in our tent. Cuillins are really mountains for a good sunny day
My dad won't see the "me on the rocky bit" pics, luckily he is an old-fashioned guy and doesn't use Internet
One more quick word about the fires. Last Sunday when we drove from Beauly to Drumnadrochit we saw a large area practically pitch-black, destroyed by fire. Another one, smaller, I noticed just between Contin and Rogie Falls... Rain desperately needed