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Arrochar Alps - S(no)w Suprise!

Arrochar Alps - S(no)w Suprise!

Postby Gary_G » Tue Apr 17, 2012 10:33 pm

Route description: Beinn Narnain and Beinn Ìme

Munros included on this walk: Beinn Ìme, Beinn Narnain

Date walked: 15/04/2012

Time taken: 6.5 hours

Distance: 13.5 km

Ascent: 1325m

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One never can fathom the mystery that is the Scottish Weather! Even the BBC can't, but perhaps thats because the BBC can't be bothered to forecast North of the border. Certainly Channel 4 this evening stated that there will be highs of 10 degrees in the UK (though the map referred to clearly showed an 11 degree in Glasgow area!).

With this in mind and the recent reports of snow on the hills / summer like temperatures, i decided to take both Summer and Winter gear to Arrochar (Just in case).

My plan, to conquer two Munros that i have seen many times, whilst being drawn to the irresistable charms of the smaller neighbour, Ben Arthur (The Cobbler).

One quick drive up the A82 (checking out Ben Lomond) and then across to Arrochar (views of Beinn Narnain and The Cobbler) it was clear that there would only be a smattering of snow therefore, i would go light and maybe include a quick visit to an old favourite.

Setting off from the car park at 9am, full of eagerness to get started, i immediatly missed the "faint" path to go up Beinn Narnain, so continued on up the zig zags to the 1st forrestry track then doubled back to pick up the more direct route past the concrete blocks of the old hydro electric pipeline. Almost immediately the views along Loch Long and across to Ben Lomond opened up and with the sun shining, time for a photo!

Arrochar & Ben Lomond

Loch Long

The path up Beinn Narnain was suprisingly interesting, quite rocky in places and occassionally requiring the use of hands, i was in my element. I could do this all day! Continuing on a steady pace, i passed a few people, this made feel good too.

Next to appear was The Cobbler, another photo opportunity!

The Cobbler (Ben Arthur)

Beinn Narnain

It was as i passed the Spearhead that the smattering of snow started to appear, the rock filled gully still full of snow and then all of a sudden i reached the top of Beinn Narnain and saw to my great suprise, a very "white" Beinn Ime (my next port of call). I had a chat with a chap and we both agreed that there shouldn't be snow there, but hey, you never know what to expect.

Beinn Ime (from Beinn Narnain summit)

Time for an early lunch and to press on down the other side. In the time i had climbed Beinn Narnain, half of Glasgow had decided to do The Cobbler, or at least to queue. Bypassing the bealach the path crossed straight to a gate in the fence and the start of "Bogland" (See previous report for my love of Bog).

This route up Beinn Ime was not particularly interesting. It was hard slog and then some more. It got more interesting on reaching the snow line though. I spoke with someone coming down about the snow / ice. Not a problem they said, "not very deep and so many peolpe have been up already the route is clear". Great, my worries about wasting my time and having to turn back dispelled.

As expected, quite busy on top and justified, as the views in all diections were perfect. Though not all appreciated. I could clearly see Beinn an Lochain, scene of a failed Corbett attempt back in January due to severe gale force winds. I will get back there when i have a spare half day or something.

Beinn an Lochain

Loch Lomond, Loch Arklet, Loch Katrine

Checking the time i decided to leave The Cobbler for another day even though coming back down Beinn Ime was very quick. I did meet someone who had done all three, i was impressed as he had only set of 20mins before me.

Anyway, the trek back down the valley was enjoyable and my thoughts wondered to future endeavours and the possibility of doing the Aonach Eagach later in April. :D
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Re: Arrochar Alps - S(no)w Suprise!

Postby Fudgie » Wed Apr 18, 2012 11:14 am

Well done and you got great weather for them. These are the two closest to me yet I keep on driving past them. I'll have to rectify that soon.
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Re: Arrochar Alps - S(no)w Suprise!

Postby quoman » Wed Apr 18, 2012 11:50 am

Good report and the picture's are very good.
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