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Double figures on Cruach Ardrain & Beinn Tulaichean

Double figures on Cruach Ardrain & Beinn Tulaichean


Postby Rossco » Tue Aug 30, 2011 11:27 pm

Route description: Cruach Ardrain and Beinn Tulaichean

Munros included on this walk: Beinn Tulaichean, Cruach Ardrain

Date walked: 17/08/2011

Time taken: 8 hours

Distance: 15.2 km

Ascent: 1206m

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It had been about 6 weeks since my last adventure in the hills. With absolutely no exercise in that time and a lot of drinking alcohol and eating bad food I planned to do a short and simple walk to ease me back into it lightly. Not long after getting the map out though I had decided on a not so short and simple route up Cruach Ardrain and Beinn Tulaichean. The way I see it, I hate the long drives to the further away Munros, so I'm delaying the inevitable by finishing all the closer one first then I'll be forced into some long journeys soon enough! :lol:

To back up the laziness in driving, I didn't tackle this route the same way mentioned on WalkHighlands as the drive was longer than just jumping up the A82 to Crianlarich. I stopped at the big layby roughly a minute or two before Crianlarich and set off about 1pm. Getting later and later these days which won't be able to last long as the winter months are just around the corner!

Anyway, started off through the gate and immediately put my foot ankle deep in the mud. This boggy ground was a sign of things to come as the whole ascent towards the first summit would later be like this. Climbed over a wee fence and splashed about some more muddy ditches until I passed under the railway bridge and onto the proper path which would take me a mile up the River Falloch.

Image
Looking up towards the first summit - Grey Height (686m) by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Image
Under the bridge by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Another few minutes up the path I spotted Sron Gharbh to the right and realised how much easier it would be to ascend An Caisteal from this direction instead of the epic route I previously done. But where's the fun in doing things the easy way eh!?

Keep walking and within 25 minutes I had reached the split in the path, keep going straight if you want to wander aimlessly up the Coire (usually my kinda thing) or turn left to go the "normal" way up towards Grey Height.

Image
Old machine with Sron Gharbh (709m) behind by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Image
Take a left here... by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Now after you wander down this path a bit you come to a pretty rickety old bridge. I stepped around the gate to the left and almost fell right into the river as one of the slats of wood was loose and gave way when I put weight on it. I cursed the poor structured bridge aloud at first then realised maybe I'd just eaten more rubbish than I thought since my last walk! :shock:

Image
Rickety Bridge (Tread Carefully!) by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Anyway, onwards and upwards. The grassy slopes started to get pretty muddy from here on so was constantly jumping about trying to avoid the worst of it but also making sure to stay on the path for once and not get lost or take a wrong turn somewhere as usual. Stopped a couple of times to catch my breath as the quick stroll at the start had taken its toll on me but after about an hour and a half in total I had reached the first summit of the day of 686 metres at Grey Height and stopped for a well-deserved rest and some healthy food for a change! :)

Image
A good place to lean by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Image
Looking back down over Hawk Craig by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Image
Cruach Ardrain (1046m) and Meall Dhamh (814m) by Rossco 7, on Flickr

There wasn't a lot more to report on for the next hour or so. Pretty standard paths and a fairly easy ascent until the cloud came in as I was nearing the top of Cruach Ardrain. I somehow missed a split in the path around this time so I'm blaming the cloud and poor visibility for this. I should have taken a left but went right instead and ended up passing right by the summit and appeared at the other side of it. This path had obviously been made by people coming back from Beinn Tulaichean and not wanting to hit the summit of Cruach Ardrain again on their way down.

Image
Looking back to Meall Dhamh (814m) by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Image
The cloud rolls in by Rossco 7, on Flickr

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BabKbddoXcE[/youtube]
Cloud moving in

Not to worry though, only a hop, skip and a jump away and I was at the top of Cruach Ardrain and my 10th Munro!! :D Or so I thought... :? As I said, the cloud had come right down on me by this point and I couldn't see a thing apart from the summit cairn and the ham and cheese pieces in my hand. So as I sat there enjoying the "view" and my lunch, out of nowhere I started to see a huge dark presence towering above me as the cloud shifted ever so slightly. It was the actual summit!! I was sitting there happy as larry celebrating reaching double figures and I hadn't even hit the summit yet! Typical Rossco mistake as usual. So I quickly packed my bag again and clambered up to officially bag my 10th and almost managed to see the surroundings for a few seconds as the cloud thought about clearing.

Image
Found the summit eventually! by Rossco 7, on Flickr

As I made my way down towards Beinn Tulaichean then, the clouds eventually started to really clear away and give some good views, just a pity I wasn't at the summit anymore. I looked towards what I then thought was my next destination and wondered just how far away it actually was. It looked like miles and miles. Was I in the wrong place? On the wrong hill? Had I made yet ANOTHER wrong turn!!? Then the old joker that is the cloud faded away again to reveal the real hill just to the left of where I was looking! :lol: Getting fed up of the weather playing jokes on me like that.

Image
Beinn a'Chroin (942m) and An Caisteal (995m) by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Image
Beinn Tulaichean?! by Rossco 7, on Flickr

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The real Beinn Tulaichean (946m) reveals itself! by Rossco 7, on Flickr

On the way down then, I passed by the split in the path I joined up with earlier and a nice wee cairn to highlight it. I'd use that later on when heading back home. From here it didn't take long to hit the summit, a fairly easy walk for about half an hour and I'd reached my 2nd and last Munro summit of the day. A lot simpler than the first for sure!

Image
Where the path splits left to avoid the summit by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Image
Walk down to Beinn Tulaichean (946m) by Rossco 7, on Flickr

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Beinn Tulaichean (946m) by Rossco 7, on Flickr

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Cruach Ardrain (1046m) from Beinn Tulaichean (946m) by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Image
Beinn Tulaichean summit (946m) looking back to Cruach Ardrain (1046m) by Rossco 7, on Flickr

The one thing I wasn't keen about on this route which I'd avoided for my last few was the fact that to get back to where I started I had to pretty much follow my tracks exactly the way I'd came. I briefly considered heading straight down the Coire Earb between Cruach Ardrain and An Caisteal but having not really prepared my route properly before I didn't have time to research it and wasn't keen on going off the beaten track this time round. So regrettably stuck to the path and headed back the way I came. It was still nice to get a view of what I missed that was behind me the whole way up and as the weather brightened up more and more a few rainbows showed themselves to add even more colour to a fine evening.

Image
View back to start with possibly Ben Lui in distance by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Image
Ben More (1174m) and a rainbow by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Image
Grey Height (686m) by Rossco 7, on Flickr

As I got back to the first summit of the day, Grey Height, I noticed a cairn which I walked straight by on the way up. At first though I thought it was some sort of bird sitting atop the rock. On closer inspection it was just two well-shaped and thoughtfully placed rocks, I wonder if it was by accident or on purpose?

Image
Duck shaped cairn? by Rossco 7, on Flickr

By this point, with only about an hour to go until I was back at the car, the sun was setting and the place looked just magic. I didn't want to leave. So I didn't rush, took some photographs on the way and stopped at the old rickety bridge across the River Falloch for 15 minutes, lay on the pebble shore and reflected on the days happenings. Another brilliant day in the hills. :)

Image
A pleasant walk back by Rossco 7, on Flickr

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Thistle & Bee by Rossco 7, on Flickr

Image
Relaxing by the River Falloch by Rossco 7, on Flickr


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http://www.everytrail.com/view_trip.php?trip_id=1244817
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Rossco
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Re: Double figures on Cruach Ardrain & Beinn Tulaichean

Postby tomyboy73 » Tue Aug 30, 2011 11:48 pm

nice one rossco, you know you`ve got the bug when you say " i`ll just do a wee easy walk today" and within seconds you`re looking at the map and thinking "mmm, i could actually get two munros in for the same driving time"! :lol: I`ve still to do these two, thanks for a good clear report. i was thinkin of adding them on when i did an castail and stuc a chroin, but had to head back for the sunday roast, and wasn`t sure how much longer they would take.
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Re: Double figures on Cruach Ardrain & Beinn Tulaichean

Postby Gavin99 » Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:32 am

Nice report ,I like the Ben More rainbow photo . I'm glad to see someone else nearly came to grief on that cunningly booby trapped bridge .I reckon some estate worker has it rigged with a camera to catch unwary walkers being catapulted into the River Falloch ! I did this route a couple of weeks ago but covered in cloud , looks like great views to be had .The muddy field at the start can be avoided by going through the gate at the North end of the lay-by ,this track curves around to provide works access to the railway and continues SW to meet the underpass, it saves you getting a boot full of black slime two minutes into the day . :crazy:
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Re: Double figures on Cruach Ardrain & Beinn Tulaichean

Postby skuk007 » Wed Aug 31, 2011 9:57 am

Nice report Rossco.

Rossco wrote:...I briefly considered heading straight down the Coire Earb between Cruach Ardrain and An Caisteal but having not really prepared my route properly before I didn't have time to research it and wasn't keen on going off the beaten track this time round...

When I did these I decided to go back the way you described. Not a difficult route but not many paths either.
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Re: Double figures on Cruach Ardrain & Beinn Tulaichean

Postby iainwatson » Wed Aug 31, 2011 4:09 pm

good report,sounds like your days out in the hills are like mine....always making minor mistakes :lol:

didnt get the views when i did these so its good to see the brilliant pics you took
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Re: Double figures on Cruach Ardrain & Beinn Tulaichean

Postby Jabber » Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:38 pm

Welcome back bud, thought you'd gone quite for a while. Liked the walk on these two hills, apart from the initial slog up to the grey heights, I found the whole ridge walk quite pleasant. :)
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Re: Double figures on Cruach Ardrain & Beinn Tulaichean

Postby Rossco » Fri Sep 02, 2011 12:52 am

tomyboy73 wrote:nice one rossco, you know you`ve got the bug when you say " i`ll just do a wee easy walk today" and within seconds you`re looking at the map and thinking "mmm, i could actually get two munros in for the same driving time"! :lol: I`ve still to do these two, thanks for a good clear report. i was thinkin of adding them on when i did an castail and stuc a chroin, but had to head back for the sunday roast, and wasn`t sure how much longer they would take.


Hehe yeah exactly, definitely got the bug right now!

Gavin99 wrote:Nice report ,I like the Ben More rainbow photo . I'm glad to see someone else nearly came to grief on that cunningly booby trapped bridge .I reckon some estate worker has it rigged with a camera to catch unwary walkers being catapulted into the River Falloch ! I did this route a couple of weeks ago but covered in cloud , looks like great views to be had .The muddy field at the start can be avoided by going through the gate at the North end of the lay-by ,this track curves around to provide works access to the railway and continues SW to meet the underpass, it saves you getting a boot full of black slime two minutes into the day . :crazy:


Oh I'm so glad other people struggled over that bridge too then. I was quite embarassed and done the quick 'looking over both shoulders to make sure no-one seen me' move! :lol:

skuk007 wrote:Nice report Rossco.

When I did these I decided to go back the way you described. Not a difficult route but not many paths either.


Ah well, should have went for it! I'll know for next time cheers. :)

iainwatson wrote:good report,sounds like your days out in the hills are like mine....always making minor mistakes :lol:

didnt get the views when i did these so its good to see the brilliant pics you took


Yeah, it wouldn't be a day in the hills if I didn't do something stupid or wrong!!

Jabber wrote:Welcome back bud, thought you'd gone quite for a while. Liked the walk on these two hills, apart from the initial slog up to the grey heights, I found the whole ridge walk quite pleasant. :)


Cheers pal, yeh it was a goodun.
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Re: Double figures on Cruach Ardrain & Beinn Tulaichean

Postby MarilynMunro » Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:48 am

Cracking report, title got my attention cos I thought here we go a nice wee walk I could use to break my boots in, but no you went and got all adventurous on us. :lol: Well done, what looks like a really nice walk and some really good photos, wish I had half the talent of some of the photographers on here.
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Re: Double figures on Cruach Ardrain & Beinn Tulaichean

Postby steven671 » Fri Sep 02, 2011 6:31 pm

well done,i done this one in march this year,third walk i think.
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Re: Double figures on Cruach Ardrain & Beinn Tulaichean

Postby AlasdairC85 » Sat Oct 01, 2011 9:43 pm

The muddy field at the start can be avoided by going through the gate at the North end of the lay-by ,this track curves around to provide works access to the railway and continues SW to meet the underpass, it saves you getting a boot full of black slime two minutes into the day .


Wish I had known that this morning because, as you say, 2 mins in I was up to my ankle in a bog on my way to An Caisteal. I will probably use this route for Cruach Ardrain, when the time comes, so thank you for the tip. :o
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Re: Double figures on Cruach Ardrain & Beinn Tulaichean

Postby ChrisW » Sat Oct 01, 2011 11:16 pm

Great stuff Rossco nice walk with some cracking pics even in the claggy bits - I like the short vid of the clouds, they're moving at some speed :shock:
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