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Glen Lyon 4 wet and low visability

PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 7:39 pm
by arthuy
We chose the only poor day in the week to do this walk. Sunday was pretty miserable but have been out in worse.


Gave the walk a bit more investigation the night before and was a little put off by reading about parking issues in Invervar comments like "if the car park is full please come back another day. Don't park on the verges" I started to envisage a little deliverance type place but thankfully when we got there we had lots of parking in the designated parking. It is very understandable to see why the walkers are perhaps not so welcome; the notice board outlined some anti social behaviour. Also some idiot had filled a carrier bag of rubbish and left it next to the notice board. Considering that this wasn't some metropolis with an actual bin I was not impressed. Probably a fox will rip it open and scatter the waste all over the parking area. Not sure whether people don't engage the brain or are just thick/selfish. Give us responsible walkers a bad name and the next walker will be made to feel less welcome. CHEERS.

Rant over and back to the walk. The parking is noted as "down from the telephone kiosk" a little confusing for some. If you come in from Aberfeldy and enter Invervar the Red phone Kiosk is pretty obvious. There is a road down to the left which looks like a private access but go down (take it easy if the car is fully loaded) and the area for around 8 cars is just there in the trees with a notice board. Worth ready to see what Deer Activity is going on.

Another slight confusion to the start of the walk. Directly across from the telephone kiosk there is a building. On the left you go through the large gate which is awkward to open. Once through you follow the track and will have 2 more gates or climb the big stiles. Once out of the woods follow the track and eventually you get to the wide wooden bridge. Cross this and keep going. There is a path of sorts on the right, ignore this and keep left. Further along the path seems to go up to the right and you want to keep going left and follow the Invervar Burn. You can see this on the O/S Map as a sort of zig zag/hairpin. Follow it round and you get to the shoogley metal bridge. This bridge will probably see most of us out but certainly fells like it will collapse at any moment and there is always one big wean who will bounce it :?

MD does have a GPS but it didn't lock in until we were on the top of Carn Gorm. We don't reply on the GPS but it is handy for a check. We followed the path along the Invervar burn further than we probably should have but the rain had come down and reduce the viability so we had little to help navigate. I dug out the landranger and was able to trace the burn up to the base of An Sgorr and could just about make out the ridge along Meall Garbh. By the time we got back to the proper path the GPS had kicked in but the bottom of our trousers got soaked. No point in putting the water proofs on just hoped they would dry off.

Now back on track we made our way to the top of Carn Gorm. Although in normal fair conditions the peaks, trigs and cairns are obvious we the weather is down it are not so easy.

Image not the top of Carn Gorm.

We came across this little cairn and thought we had reached the summit but checking the GPS it was clear we were slightly off and a short walk found a trig point which had been couped on its side.

Image MD at Carn Gorm
Image C at Carn Gorm

We quite often happen across little cairns on Munros and have no idea why people make them. Is it a tribute or vandalism? All I know is that they confuse me at times. We found a spot just off the summit which was wind free enough to have a bite to eat and short rest.

One Munro down and three to go. Another easy one just follow the path, however without anything to get a bearing on we skirted round An Sgorr. Looking at the O/S map we walked below "An Sgorr" to around the 800m contour line then diagonally up to Meall Garbh hitting the top between the two spot heights.
Image MD Meall Garbh
Image C Meall Garbh

From here on it was quite an easy walk other than the rain and visibility issues. I particularly found it eerie walking through the bent, rusted fence posts. Felt like Culloden after the battle, probably good subject matter for photographers but my little camera phone was finding it hard enough just taking the summit shots.

So we just got out head down and plodded on through, if there had been a decent escape route we would have considered it but we have had worse walks and it was simple enough to keep going with the option of leaving the last Munro. We followed the old fence line but used the GPS to verify we weren’t drifting to far off course.

Past over the Meall a' Bháar and on to Carn Marig. Again we had to refer to the Map and the GPS for the Alto meter. We had mistakenly thought the 1001m was the summit but when we unfolded the map the 1042m spot height revealed.

So a short walk up to the summit through they rocks, these really did slow us down as they were wet, slippy and uneven under foot. Surprising that none of us got injured. Perhaps there was a better route but we couldn't see much.

So Carn Mairg with the fence post stuck in the cairn like Excalibur.

By now we were short on enthusiasm but keen to bag the four Munros so soaked through we plodded on to Creag Mhor (Meall na Aighean) basically walking on a bearing. The rain had not lifted to reveal anything of the noted views.

In a short time we reached Creag Mhor (Meall na Aighean) the hill with two names? There was a strange line of rocks, some of it looked like a dyke but appeared naturally occurring. We must have cut across and met up with the well trodden path up to the summit for the final photo call.


We took the last summit at 20:00hrs so 9hrs walking most in the rain. The descent was quite unremarkable taking around 1hr to reach the car park. Again it was a tad slow but suppose we were weary and aware of the slippy under foot conditions, I did have a close shave which could have had lead to a head first tumble down through the bracken.

Around 750m the cloud lifted enough to get some sort of view.

Glad to get back to the main path as it was better underfoot. The path met up with the outbound route just before the path through the woods. So in no time we were through the woods and back at the car.

A few more things to bear in mind are that there is ZERO mobile reception in the area, although I got a brief text and phone call at some point during the day. We even struggled to get the GPS signal but this could have been due to the poor weather.

We were running late and most of the pubs and hotels stop serving food at 21:30hrs and we were miles away from anywhere we wouldn't have even made the Lawers hotel. There was also the need to check in with people so they could stand down the mountain rescue. Thankfully I always leave a £1 coin in the car for my gym locker so used the very hand Public telephone Kiosk at the car park, excellent service. I wonder how much it will cost BT to send some out to collect my pound.

There you go the Glen Lyon 4 on a poor day. Overall it was quite a good walk only spoiled by the rain and lack of view. All part of the fun of Munro bagging. One really strange thing was that this was the first Munro where we didn't see another person the entire time. There were 4 cars in the car park but it appears that most people walk in a clockwise route so that wouldn't have helped.


Re: Glen Lyon 4 wet and low visability

PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 8:49 pm
Well done in the circumstances - shame the weather didn't improve enough to let you get some views as it's a lovely part of the world. Maybe better luck next weekend ? .

Re: Glen Lyon 4 wet and low visability

PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 8:52 pm
by Driftwood
Hard luck with the weather, though you did well to get round and back intact. I'd thoughts of doing these in the future (my trips north are infrequent), so thanks for the tips about parking and possibly-misleading tops. I hope to walk them with better visibility, though!

So Carn Mairg with the fence post stuck in the cairn like Excalibur.

I'm also wondering, if pulling the sword from the stone makes you king, what do you get for hauling a rusty fence-post out of a cairn? (Possibly tetanus).


Re: Glen Lyon 4 wet and low visability

PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 10:42 pm
by skuk007
Nice report, just a real shame about the weather. Walking in rain and clag for nearly the whole day is a real slog. Hope you get some deserved sunshine on your next outing. :)

P.S. Nice Vitesse(?)

Re: Glen Lyon 4 wet and low visability

PostPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 10:09 pm
by arthuy
We have had 4 outings to this area and out of that only one was very good. Will need to try plan the last few for better days so we can try and catch the view.

It is a Vitesse, MD isnt an old car type so taking somthing which is almost 30 years old adds to the excitement of the day out.


Re: Glen Lyon 4 wet and low visability

PostPosted: Thu Aug 04, 2011 5:53 pm
by old danensian
The soggy things we do for enjoyment eh!

I wussed out on this one at the beginning of July in similar conditions - got to carn Gorm and called it a day with the wind driving in from the east - a headwind, driving rain and glasses aren't the best combinations.

I'm sure it didn't add to BT's financial viability but they also had to collect my £1 as well - a usefully valuable service they still maintain given the lousy reception - although my GPS was sound and spot on for the trip.