Knoydart part I
by xslawekx » Sat Jun 25, 2011 1:27 pm
Munros included on this walk: Beinn Sgritheall
Corbetts included on this walk: Beinn na h-Eaglaise, Beinn nan Caorach
Grahams included on this walk: Beinn a'Chapuill
Date walked: 24/06/2011
Time taken: 9 hours
Distance: 23 km
Ascent: 1850m6 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).
One Friday morning I drove to Glenelg with a strong intention of exploring this part of the country. The night before I'd had a quick look at the map and decided to go for Beinn Sgritheall. With a twist, though.. All this saw me driving to the end of the road leading to Balvraid where I left my car and set off up Glean Beag.
After about 3km I got to a point where a path branches off and where Amhainn a'Ghlinne Bhig can be crossed by means of a small suspended bridge.
Once on the other side of the stream I started to ascent long but gentle, grassy NE shoulder of Beinn a'Chapuill. At times I managed to follow an indistinct path where I could make out a footprint or two every now and then with deer tracks being much more common. The higher I went the better views would open up on both sides of the shoulder with Glen Beag looking especially impressive down below as N side of Beinn a'Chapuill is really steep.
Two hours in to the walk and I found myself on the summit plateau with few higher points and the true summit at 759m.
After a lengthy stop at the summit I navigated myself down to Bealach na h-Oidhche. (I am not going to even try to describe how tremendous the views are or to decide in which direction the views are best - I find it impossible to do and I felt like I could stay there forever..). The way down to the bealach can be tricky if the weather is foul or when one picks too direct route down as the East Slabs of Beinn a'Chapuill are out of bounds for most sane people. It is actually better to stray a bit further SE and then come back to the head of the bealach.
Once there I had to pick route up Beinn Sgritheall. The eastern shoulder leading to a point at 925m is longer but not as steep and rough as the face to the west that leads to a (unnamed?) top at 928m. I went for the easier option and climbed up gentler shoulder to the left. 1h 30min after I'd left Beinn a'Chapuill I found myself at the summit of the Munro.
And here is a sample of what you can see from there on a good day:
From the summit I took on a path that is a part of the usall route up Beinn Sgritheall and that leads east to Bealach Arnasdall. Before I reached it though I'd climbed the point at 906m from which I'd had good view of my next target or targets actually:
While descending steeply down to the bealach my knees sent me a message that not everything may go according to the plan I'd also had to think twice before asceding the Corbett of Beinn na h-Eaglaise, because the shortest route up from Bealach Arnasdall is very steep - if there is such a route in the first place,that is. After having some doubts I resolved to follow the old fence line that leads directy to the summit. I wouldn't recommend this route to anyone on a bad day when you're not able to see clearly what's above you or when it's windy as while being on that steep slope you're very exposed and in places there's not too much to put your foot onto.. Now, having said all that I found this route easier than I'd expected and progressed quickly to the summit at 805m.
Here yet another lengthy break took place as I tried to soak in all that marvellous scenery around me...
From there the Corbett of Beinn nan Caorach is only a stone's throw away, so I set off for the bealach between the two Corbetts. The going is pretty easy in this section as the slopes are mostly grassy and surprisingly dry and firm.
The wind picked up and thicker clouds gathered and it got somewhat colder by the time I reached the summit of Beinn nan Caorach. While still going up it I began to struggle to enjoy my walk for the first time on the day.. So when finally on the summit I decided against going for Beinn Clachach which at 643m is a Graham and which I'd planned to include in the walk.
After resting a while at the top I moved on again for the final part of my trip - I went down Bealach Aoidhdailean in order to take on a path that would see me back pretty much all the way to where I'd left the car. On that final descent I started to suffer from a pain in my right foot as I'd got my heel fractured in a horse riding accident only 6 weeks ago (still causes me some problems - when it'd happened my girlfriend told me to go to A&E but I chose to go up Ben Hope instead only a day after the accident and ended up somehow hopping along through the pain but didn't see the point of missing out on the good weather. By the way: how many of you boys and girls out there has ridden an upset horse rodeo-style?).
The way back along Ghleann Aoidhdailean was pleasant enough although a power line runs through it what spoils the atmosphere of the place.
After about 9h I made it back to Balvraid and drove away.
If I hadn't been as tired as I was I'd've spent the night in Glenelg and got on to a ferry to Kylerhea to do the Grahams there, but it's going to be another day, another story...
by xslawekx » Sat Jun 25, 2011 1:49 pm
kevsbald wrote:Cracking stuff.
Thanks a lot, sir
by Stretch » Sat Jun 25, 2011 3:17 pm
by xslawekx » Sat Jun 25, 2011 4:17 pm
Stretch wrote:Excellent report, really enjoyed that. I'm dying to get myself up that way soon.
Thank you Stretch. I hope you'll enjoy the walk as much as I did.
by Alan S » Sat Jun 25, 2011 11:11 pm
by kinley » Sun Jun 26, 2011 10:12 pm
by Gable Gable End » Sun Jun 26, 2011 10:35 pm
by xslawekx » Mon Jun 27, 2011 7:27 am
by malky_c » Mon Jun 27, 2011 5:05 pm
Looking forward to a report on the Kylerhea Grahams too, as these have been on my 'to do' list for ages too. I've already done one, but I get the feeling your route will be similar to the one I plan to use to do all 3. Just have to wait and see.