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The Four Seasons

The Four Seasons

Postby jonny616 » Tue May 15, 2012 7:06 pm

Route description: The Ring of Steall, Mamores

Munros included on this walk: Am Bodach, An Gearanach, Sgùrr a' Mhàim, Stob Coire a' Chàirn

Date walked: 12/05/2012

Time taken: 12 hours

Distance: 16.5 km

Ascent: 1676m

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There have been a few good reports on this round recently, but here is my take on our day. It started over a year ago. We were going to camp in Glen Nevis & do the ring of steal. The month of May, plenty of light good weather & no midges. The weather gods conspired against us & we ended up on a day trip to walk Driesh & Mayer in the only part of Scotland not to have torrential rain on that day. :lol:
So fast forward one year & here we are after much texting & FB messaging standing at car park at the end of the glen. There is some white fluffy cloud, but lots of blue sky & sunshine. Ya beauty! 8) 8) 8)
The walk through the woods was great with everyone getting reacquainted or acquainted as the case may be. Some discussion about the bridge, the ridge & crossing at the waterfall.
The view as you emerge from the trees is great especially when it’s such a lovely day.
I think the phrase ‘the bridge was dispatched professionally’ is apt for 5 out of 7, whilst two of us sprinted knee deep through the river in a selfless act to get the best photos! :lol: :lol:
Next was crossing under the steal falls, which after all the rain was fairly tricky, not so much in the actual crossing but picking the right spot.
Once across it was time for the obligatory boggy section where I had to put up with a bit of stick from the gang! :lol:
Then the ascent starts on a great path with the views behind of the Aonachs, CMD, the arête & the Ben.
A wee food stop on a broad shoulder before the final ascent onto An Gearanach & the start of the Ring of Steall.
The first sight of the whole thing is amazing. We spent a while taking it all in before crossing to An Garbtanach where a bit of hand work is necessary. Dropped steeply down & as we did we could see a snow shower coming our way. Waterproofs on & tackle the ascent of Stob Coire a Chairn. Clag time, then clear again with the cloud above the summits & the ridge still in view, but starting to look darker & meaner than before. Good views across to Glencoe & the Big Bookle.
The wind started up & just got steadily stronger as the day progressed with snow showers, hail showers & clag coming & going for the rest of the day.
The ascent of Am Bodach was tricky. It’s steep & had a fair covering of snow but not enough to kick into. Just enough to cover the ball bearing like gravel under foot. Think An Stuc, but worse. :o
It is difficult to get lost on a ridge, but we did have to take a bearing to get off Am Bodach as we could see heehaw & the path appears to be just off the ridge on the left.
The cloud lifted again & we could see Sgurr an Lubhar (the demoted one). Over we went fairly straight forword to Sgurr Choire a Mhail & then Oh ok here we are! :-x
The next part was fairly nerve rattling with most people’s ‘ring of steall’ (cheers for the phrase Gammy) twitching. Slippery snow, very narrow ridge & the wind blowing! A bit of trouble finding the bypass around the trickiest bit, but that was no picnic in the conditions we had.
A great sense of relief & joy once across with the small matter of a knee deep in snow ascent of Sgurr a Mhaim.
Once off the broad ridge we shot down the scree section pretty quickly & looked for a sheltered spot for a last bite to eat before taking the path down to the lower car park. The wind getting stronger & the snow showers changing to rain as we dropped height.
A fantastic day a great walk & one I will certainly do again. Still buzzing & I know I’m not the only one.
Thanks to all my walking buddies whom I was with on the day. I’m sure they will want to add photos & comments. 8)
Mark pic 1.jpg
Out of the woods
Take me to the Bridge!
Paul pic 1.jpg
Crossing under the falls
Heading for An Gearanach
The Ben
Summit An Gearanach
Gearanach to Stob Coire a Chairn
Am Bodach to Sgurr an Lubhar
Sgurr an Lubhar, Stob Choire a Mhail & The Devils Ridge
Stob Choire a Mhail, The Devils Ridge & Sgurr a Mhaim
Mark pic 3.jpg
Team Shot An Gearanach
An Garbtanach
Slabs of An Garbtanach
An Garbtanach, Nevis & CMD
Summit Stob Coire a Chairn
Am Bodach
Clag walkers Am Bodach
Mark pic 4.jpg
Summit Am Bodach
Looking back An Gearanach to Am Bodach
From Sgurr Choire a Mhail to Sgurr a Mhaim
Here we go!
Negotiating a small exposed chimney
Mark at the end of The Devils Ridge
Mark pic 5.jpg
Summit Sgurr a Mhaim
Mark pic 6.jpg
Homeward Bound
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Re: The Four Seasons

Postby pigeon » Tue May 15, 2012 7:25 pm

Looked a bit scary on the ridge at times there jonny :shock: ,had my eye on this for a bit now,might wait till the weather settles a bit 8) Good report again :thumbup:
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Re: The Four Seasons

Postby rockhopper » Tue May 15, 2012 7:55 pm

Well done all - looks a bit tricky in places. Crazy weather for May - am hoping to get up here but hopefully wait for better weather - cheers :D
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Re: The Four Seasons

Postby Gavin99 » Tue May 15, 2012 7:57 pm

Great stuff Jonny though I'm with Pigeon on the weather conditions . No wonder you are still buzzing :D
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Re: The Four Seasons

Postby kojak » Tue May 15, 2012 8:43 pm

I have had some epic walks this year thanks to some new found friends, and this is definitely one of them.. Even the adverse weather conditions added to the excitement of this day out, thoroughly enjoyed and just like you Jonny, still buzzing from this one :D Great report...
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Re: The Four Seasons

Postby GillC » Tue May 15, 2012 8:48 pm

Great report J, I was over on the CMD/Nevis on the same day. Plenty good views over to the R of S, had never considered it,,but great pics,,again,,might wait until the weathers a bit more stable :lol: Well done, GillC
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Re: The Four Seasons

Postby SusieThePensioner » Tue May 15, 2012 9:31 pm

Thoroughly enjoyed your report Jonny and some great photos :thumbup:

The ridge makes me feel ill....thats why I've never done Striding Edge in the Lakes....and won't now anyway :lol:
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Re: The Four Seasons

Postby Bod » Tue May 15, 2012 9:55 pm

Aye Jonny, great report on a great walk! This was the subjuct of my very first trip report on WH and I think I have still to finish it and put up a few more pics :lol: . Well done to all of you :D :D :D
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Re: The Four Seasons

Postby Jock McJock » Wed May 16, 2012 12:01 am

Nice one as always Jonny :D Kinda glad you guys had to abort this last year as I'd have missed it! :lol: Great walk on Saturday and a great wee weekend all round, cheers everyone :) I'll stick a few of my pics from the day on too.

Crossing below the falls

Ben Nevis and CMD Arete

Heading up An Gearanach

The Grey Corries

Heading for Sgurr an lubhair

On Sgurr an lubhair getting ready for the ridge

The Devils Ridge and Sgurr a'Mhaim
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Re: The Four Seasons

Postby andy millar1 » Wed May 16, 2012 12:21 am

Good report Jonny and well done to the R.O.S crew ,tough walk in mentalist conditions....I'm going to do this again at some point and I know most of you will tooo.
andy millar1

Re: The Four Seasons

Postby pollyh33 » Wed May 16, 2012 10:02 am

Fantastic report Jonny :D

Can't believe all the obstacles you guys had to cope with on this trip- like It's A Knockout but without the silly costumes!!!! :lol:

PS I'm noting that your selfless acts just keep on coming, expect a sainthood in the post any time soon!!!!

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Re: The Four Seasons

Postby dogplodder » Wed May 16, 2012 11:05 am


I always think of that wire bridge as a test and if you cannae hack that you cannae hack what's to come! That ridge pic looks well scary! :shock:
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Re: The Four Seasons

Postby Johnny Corbett » Wed May 16, 2012 4:05 pm

Good stuff and some fine photos. This is one of my favourite walks to date, even though a lot of it was in clag, as there's enough interest along the ridges that we wern't too fussed at missing the views :D
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Re: The Four Seasons

Postby Alastair S » Wed May 16, 2012 4:53 pm

Top draw stuff :clap: :clap: :clap:
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Re: The Four Seasons

Postby morag1 » Wed May 16, 2012 6:37 pm

Great stuff although a bit scary, well done the Gang :thumbup:

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