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Beinn Heasgarnich and Creag Mhor
by Hantswalker » Sun Jun 19, 2011 1:52 pm
Route description: Creag Mhor and Beinn Heasgarnich
Munros included on this walk: Beinn Heasgarnich, Creag Mhor (Glen Lochay)
Date walked: 12/06/2011
Time taken: 8 hours
Distance: 25.1 km
Ascent: 1443mRegister or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
Most of the reports and guidebooks describe this circuit as challenging or tough and with good reason. I knew this would be the case 25 years ago (when detailed information on the Munros was limited) and I suppose that is why it has taken me so long to get around to doing it. It is long and involves a lot of climbing but the main difficulty is that once on the hill it is for the most part trackless, although the SW ridge of Creag Mhor has a surprisingly good path which thankfully, I found easy to follow in descent.
There is an option to drive up the mountain road from Kenknock but it is gated and I believe not always open so I chose a longer route with more climbing but used a bike to compensate. I parked the car at the large pull in on the left, a little distance before Kenknock with its locked gate. I cycled the track for 6.5km to the start of the zig-zags up to the higher track near a small dam. The track is the usual rocky and bumpy type found so often in the highlands but it is relatively level with only 137m of ascent.
I have not seen anyone describe the exact route I took but it had the advantage of close proximity to an attractive burn (Allt Bad a Mhaim) with deep pools and taking in a good waterfall on the Eag Uillt.
At this point it is perhaps worthwhile me saying that I was badly out of condition, having not done a proper walk for several months. Despite this, the forgiving angle of the slope and the continued interest of the rushing burns made the experience very enjoyable.
Arriving at the subsidiary summit of Stob an Fhir-Bhogha is a relief and the easiest part of the day follows with a return trip to the summit of Beinn Heasgarnich. The drop to the boggy beallach over Sron Taibh is steep with low broken crags. I met the first person of the day at this point (this was a fine Sunday in June).
Most guides suggest a route via the high beallach between Meall Tionail and Creag Mhor but the extra distance was not attractive so I chose the exceptionally steep direct route. This involves manoeuvres between and around multiple high crags and some mild scrambling which was enjoyable. The summit appears soon after the angle eases.
The descent from Creag Mhor is straightforward with few of the anticipated drops off the end of a cliff so often encountered. The bike came into view and it was just a bumpy ride back to the car to round off a satisfying day.
by Johnny Corbett » Sun Jun 19, 2011 2:34 pm
I did the exact route you chose on Thursday, it's well worth it to use the bike.
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