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Get High And Stay High (Part Two - Saturday)

Get High And Stay High (Part Two - Saturday)


Postby CurlyWurly » Sat Apr 21, 2012 2:08 pm

Route description: Five Sisters of Kintail

Munros included on this walk: Aonach Meadhoin, Saileag, Sgurr a'Bhealaich Dheirg, Sgurr Fhuaran, Sgurr na Carnach, Sgurr na Ciste Duibhe

Date walked: 14/04/2012

Time taken: 8 hours

Distance: 19.5 km

Ascent: 2250m

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Continued from http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/Forum/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=20487

I have never slept in a camper van before but what a great experience it was. Comfortable and warm, with proper cooking facilities it was a pleasurable way to spend a night. But the best thing was being able to get out of bed and just head off up the hill. Great stuff.

20. Camping Mazda Bongo style.JPG
Camping Mazda Bongo style

21. Heading over to the first peak.JPG
Heading over to the first peak

We set off at 8am and aimed straight for the shoulder that would head up to Sgurr an Fhuarail South Top. The ground was wet, boggy and tussocky and it was it was a tough start to the day. By the time we hit the south top of Sgurr an Fhuarail, the sun was out and the views had opened up. Bring it on!

22. Looking back to Loch Cluanie from the south top of Sgurr an Fhuarail.JPG
Looking back to Loch Cluanie from the south top of Sgurr an Fhuarail

23. Looking over to Aonach Meadhoin. The snow was pretty deep here.JPG
Looking over to Aonach Meadhoin. The snow was pretty deep here

The snow was pretty deep so our initial plan to run the ridge was scuppered. But this did not seem to matter. The weather was great and with amazing air clarity you could see for miles. We headed up to the summit of our first major peak, the Munro Top, Sgurr an Fhuarail. The clouds looked dark and ominous above but they were way above the tops so hopefully it would stay that way. The snow was even deeper here. Up to our knees in some places and progress was slow. We dropped down then headed up to our first Munro of the day, Aonach Meahhoin.

24. Looking back from the summit of Aonach Meadhoin.JPG
Looking back from the summit of Aonach Meadhoin

25. A 'Cobbler' type pose on the rocky ridge.JPG
A 'Cobbler' type pose on the rocky ridge

26. The rocky spur led to the summit of Sgurr a' Bhealaich Dheirg.JPG
The rocky spur led to the summit of Sgurr a' Bhealaich Dheirg

The view across the South Glen Shiel Ridge was fantastic as was the view north to Ciste Dubh. We dropped down from the summit and we scrambled across the rocky ridge and up to the summit of our second Munro, Sgurr a'Bhealaich Dheirg. And what an impressive peak this was. We followed the narrow spur to the well-built cairn and stopped for a good twenty minutes whilst we grabbed some food. You could see the five sisters clearly in the distance and with the cloud lifting to reveal blue skies, I was eager to get going.

28. The Five Sisters comes into view.JPG
The Five Sisters comes into view

29. Dropping down from the summit of Sgurr a' Bhealaich Dheirg.JPG
Dropping down from the summit of Sgurr a' Bhealaich Dheirg.JPG

Retracing our steps along the spur, we headed across the summit plateau and headed down to the bealach and then up to the summit of Saileag. This was the least interesting of the peaks climbed so far so we just headed over the top and drop down to the Bealach an Lapain where you could see a steady stream of people heading up from the glen below.

30. The Five Sisters from Saileag.JPG
The Five Sisters from Saileag

31. Heading along the ridge to Sgurr nan Spainteach.JPG
Heading along the ridge to Sgurr nan Spainteach

32. Looking back to the Brothers.JPG
Looking back to the Brothers

33. Continuing along the ridge.JPG
Continuing along the ridge

Thankfully we had done the hard work earlier on so it was just a matter of ascending 275 metres to the summit of Sgurr nan Spainteach. The ridge was long but there was not much snow and the views made up for any effort. We headed over the top then pushed up to the summit of Sgurr na Ciste Duibhe. As we continued along the top, the views of Loch Duich opened up. Awesome.

34. Sgurr na Ciste Duibhe.JPG
Sgurr na Ciste Duibhe

35. The view across to Loch Duich was amazing.JPG
The view across to Loch Duich was amazing

We had been on the move for five and a half hours and had ticked off four Munros. Good progress, considering we had pretty much walked the entire ridge. My eyes were drawn to the huge hulk of Sgurr Fhuaran but before this we had Sgurr na Carnach to contend with. It was rough and rocky on the approach but not tricky.

36. Sgurr Fhuaran from Sgurr na Carnach.JPG
Sgurr Fhuaran from Sgurr na Carnach

We dropped down to the bealach then pushed straight up the other side towards the summit of Sgurr Fhuaran. My legs were beginning to feel it now and there was no way I could keep up with Scott, who as usual powered up the hill as though it was a walk in the park. I has assumed (wrongly) that all the hard work would be now complete and with the final peak just a top, I expected just a short drop and renascent similar to some of the other tops I had climbed over the last two days.

37. Looking back from Sgurr Fhuaran.JPG
Looking back from Sgurr Fhuaran

38. It was a pretty steep descent.JPG
It was a pretty steep descent

From the summit of Sgurr Fhuaran, Sgurr nan Saighead looked a decent distance away. The interesting thing was that there was no snow at all. It was as though it had been washed away. It was a steep descent to the bealach and the snow was wet and slushy.

39. Sgurr nan Saighead - The final major peak of the day.JPG
Sgurr nan Saighead - The final major peak of the day

We reached the Bealach Buidhe and followed the path that hugged the cliff to towards the top. From here the views were probably the best of the day. The amazing Coire na h-Uaighe dominated the view and I cannot say I would fancy venturing down there.

40. The amazing cliffs above Coire na h-Uaighe.JPG
The amazing cliffs above Coire na h-Uaighe

41. Dropping down at last.JPG
Dropping down at last

With the entire climbing out of the way, it was just a case of heading back out to the car. The good news was that it looked like we could run pretty much the entire way. Apart from a swift descent from Sgurr a'Bhealaich Dheirg, we had walked the entire route so it was good to stretch the legs. We followed the path round the cliff edge and over the top of Beinn Buidhe before descending into Coire na Criche. We crossed the Allt a’ Chruin and picked up an excellent stalkers path that dropped down into the gorge and then into the village below.

42. The end is in sight.JPG
The end is in sight

Two days, twelve Munros, amazing weather. If Carlsberg made mountain days they would probably be just like this :)


Saturday Route.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts

Last edited by CurlyWurly on Sat Apr 21, 2012 3:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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CurlyWurly
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 137
Munros:282   Corbetts:42
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Sub 2000:13   Hewitts:51
Wainwrights:50   
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Location: Dalgety Bay, Fife

Re: Get High And Stay High (Part Two - Saturday)

Postby kevsbald » Sat Apr 21, 2012 2:35 pm

Considering your efforts from the day before, that really is a commendable effort indeed. See you in 3 weeks for the Cuillin!
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kevsbald
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Location: Glasgow

Re: Get High And Stay High (Part Two - Saturday)

Postby monty » Sat Apr 21, 2012 5:42 pm

Big walk two days running. Superb. Again a great set of photos. Well done. :D
monty
 

Re: Get High And Stay High (Part Two - Saturday)

Postby jimandandrea » Sat Apr 21, 2012 10:05 pm

Excellent. You are running/walking light and I know you are living in Cumbria - I did my BGR last year and Oh how I am envious of your run on that terrain. Pics are FANTASTIC.
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Re: Get High And Stay High (Part Two - Saturday)

Postby Fudgie » Sun Apr 22, 2012 7:07 pm

You're a machine to do what you did in two days :lol:
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Re: Get High And Stay High (Part Two - Saturday)

Postby quoman » Sun Apr 22, 2012 7:59 pm

That was superb to read and the photo's are fantastic
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Re: Get High And Stay High (Part Two - Saturday)

Postby mrssanta » Mon Apr 23, 2012 7:39 pm

oh my that was fabulous!!!
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