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Doin the Dhonuill

Doin the Dhonuill


Postby basscadet » Mon Mar 19, 2012 1:30 am

Route description: Beinn a'Bheithir

Munros included on this walk: Sgorr Dhearg (Beinn a'Bheithir), Sgorr Dhonuill (Beinn a'Bheithir)

Date walked: 18/03/2012

Time taken: 6 hours

Distance: 15.42 km

Ascent: 1319m

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This morning, I was excited when I got up. It was a cool crisp morning, and I could see for miles from the house I was staying in, right up to my target for the day Beinn a' Bheithir. A decent view was on the cards :thumbup: after weeks of walking in snow, rain and mist.
My mate who had kindly taken me westward, was entering a triatholon in Fort Bill, so I was dropped off at the top of the road behind the aptly named 'Dragon's tooth golf course' in Ballachulish just after 8 oclock.
I was feeling a bit rough after too many whisky's, and too little sleep, but that disappeared as I made my way through the woods. It really was a bonny glen, with mixed woodland lower down, and the usual scandanavian pines further up. There is a seemingly huge logging operation at the moment with lots of heavy machinery left lying about like a giants discarded toys.
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At the end of the track, the path started, or was supposed to, but the first section was almost impassable due to fallen trees! I had to scramble up a good bit higher to make my way round. A little further up the path there was this sign for folk going the other way :problem: They could of signposted the diversion from the other side :lol:
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Soon I was above the trees, and the views started opening out.. It was iced hard underfoot, and I seemed to be slipping a lot, but I was glad I was in the shade as I climbed up steps to the Corrie. The path seemed to peter out entirely, and I decided that ascending by the best looking route was the way forward.
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The Corrie was steep (arent all corries? :lol: ) and halfway up, the mist set in, and the snow started. Nice vertical snow, but my heart sank as the view disappeared. I had to ditch the poles and use my hands to scramble over a few outcrops, as in the clag I had lost sight of the route that looked so good from the corrie. :(
I made the ridge eventually, and after only a hundred yards or so, I found the cairn that marked the path down - the one I should of used to come up :D Oh well at least I had got a scrambling fix.
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The mist was right down, and I wandered up the icy ridge, as the snow went off, and the sun tried its hardest to burn away some of the cloud that was ruining my day!
I came across a rocky hillock and tried to walk round it, only to find much steepness. I checked the map only to see that the rocky mound was the summit! Wasn't expecting that so soon.. I scrambled over the big boulders and sat at the cairn for a fairly long time, with the sun on my back, watching the view change as clouds came and went.
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The path down the other side, lasted all of 5 yards, before some tricky very steep rocky stuff had to be negotiated. it was a really fun ridge at this point, although I was glad I was going down instead of up. I had definately made the right choice of ascent there :)

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it seemed a long way to the coll, but it certainly wasnt boring, but the ascent up to Sgorr Dhearg was unfortunately. An amble up an eroded rocky path. At least the view behind me was good :D
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As I climbed, the wind started getting up, until I was almost getting blown about! I made the cairn without hassle, and spotted a wee terrier a little further down the ridge. I whistled, and the wee thing came bounding along to meet me. I fet it a bit of cheese and gave it a bosey. It wouldn't come with me from the cairn, so I was left to retrace my steps, wondering where it had come from.
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As I turned to descend, the snow came on again, but with the high winds, it was one of those situations where you feel like you are getting slapped in the face constantly.. Yaay loads of fun.. :eh:
When I got back down to the Bealach, the weather was a lot better, and I turned down the glen to make my descent.
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The going was steep and boggy, but I didn't have any problems until I hit the tree line again. At first it was OK, ambling through the forest next to the burn, but the forest got thicker. Orienteers would call that kind of forest 'fight' which is pretty accurate really. I pushed myself through small openings between trees, snapping branches, and getting my hair, rucksack or jacket caught every 30 seconds. Then the burn got steeper, and there were many pretty waterfalls to scramble down the side of. The mud underfoot was ankle deep and it was a real struggle to get down the path and regain the track. I managed to negotiate the forestry tracks without incident, and when I got the car park carried on, past the disused railway and accross the Glf course. When I was finally got over Ballachulish bridge, tthere were some lovely rainbows.
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And I was back at the house in no time after that, drinking a well earned cup of tea :D
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basscadet
Mountain Walker
 
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