walkhighlands

Share your personal walking route experiences in Scotland, and comment on other peoples' reports.
Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.

From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mullach

From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mullach


Postby Graeme D » Thu Aug 02, 2012 5:06 pm

Route description: Stob Ban (Mamores) and Mullach nan Coirean

Munros included on this walk: Mullach nan Coirean, Stob Ban (Mamores)

Date walked: 29/07/2012

Time taken: 6.8 hours

Distance: 12.3 km

Ascent: 1213m

4 people think this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

When I did the Ring of Steall back in April with kevsbald and CurlyWurly, myself and Kev came down off Sgurr a' Mhaim back to the carpark in Glen Nevis while Darren opted to backtrack over the Devil's Ridge and knock off Stob Ban and Mullach nan Coirean whilst in the neighbourhood. That was a stunning day - one of the finest I have had the privilege of spending amongst the hills - and I was sorely tempted to join Darren in nailing all 6 Munros but I had time constraints whereas he had the luxury of some time to kill before meeting another friend and heading on up to Kintail.

So, with myself having been in Cornwall for the first part of July and my colleague and good walking buddy Robin having then been in Antigua (see who got the short straw when it came to Summer 2012 holiday destinations then eh!), it was getting on for the end of July and we hadn't managed to get out together this summer holiday yet. A flurry of texts and cross-consultation of Munro maps duly ensued upon his return from Antigua as we looked to find some hills that neither of us had done. After quite a bit of deliberation, we finally settled on these two and I headed over to stay at his place on Saturday evening. A curry, a few beers and not nearly enough sleep later and we were away by 6.30 on the Sunday morning heading up the A9.

A minor spanner in the works was encountered at Dalwhinnie when we pulled into the Tollhouse Catering place on the station road to find it shut. It was still early on a Sunday morning I guess! So we soldiered on, both of us beginning to feel a bit dodgy as we headed along the side of Loch Laggan - probably the result of no breakfast and insufficient caffeine intake. :?

This situation was remedied when we pulled into the big car park behind the Spar in Spean Bridge and our eyes were drawn to the big sign outside the Commando Hotel next door advertising sausage, bacon and egg rolls! :clap: Sounded like just the job, so we ordered a couple up and sat at one of the wooden tables outside in a fine drizzle as we downed our rolls and hot drinks before continuing along the road to Fort Bill and onto the Glen Nevis road.

The Midge didn't take long to find us in the Lower Falls car park so we made a sharp exit along the road, over the bridge and through the gate onto the bog infested path that leads up into Coire a' Mhusgain.

Image
Lower slopes of Coire a' Mhusgain

It was yet another of those classic Summer 2012 days for walking - light shower, delay putting waterproofs on 'cos it's far too clammy, rain gets heavier, waterproofs go on, internal pressure builds to intolerable levels due to steam build-up, waterproofs get ditched, sun comes out and huge patches of blue stuff appear overhead but still water falls from the sky, rain gets heavier still and there is little option but to suffer under the waterproofs, rain stops and a big yellow thing appears in the blue stuff overhead, walking partner narrowly avoids spontaneous self-combustion by getting gear off just in time, 10 minutes later the whole cycle starts again...... blah blah blah...... :crazy:

Image
Stob Ban beginning to make her presence felt to our right

Image
Back down Glen Nevis, Ben with his hat on

We had both wanted to do the route this way to take advantage of what we understood to be a decent path up into the upper reaches of the coire. The route is also described this way in the Cameron McNeish book and I wanted to take full advantage of how he described the ascent into Coire a' Mhusgain:

"Higher up, the coire opens out and you begin to feel the presence of Stob Ban. Towering from its gradual northern ridge it begins to dominate the scene, great scree runnels splitting the steep slopes into a complete system of buttresses and crags, the topmost ones sparkling white in the sun".

In the sun Cameron???? Aye, right! What did you have in your flask and in your sandwiches the day you did it???? :shock: :lol:

Image
Shades of the Aonach Eagach or Liathach

Image
Heavy rainfall had turned the streams into serious water features

Image
Crossing the stream below the lochan and turning for the ridge of Stob Ban

But wait, what is this we see happening before our eyes. The big yellow thing appears to be growing in strength and the blue stuff is becoming more widespread! By the time we reached the cairn at the junction of the stalkers' paths on the southern slopes of Stob Ban, it was seriously threatening to turn into a most uncharacteristically fine day! :o

Image
Robin dwarfed by the majesty of Stob Ban

Image
The buttresses loom out of the cloud

Image
Sgurr a' Mhaim and the Devil's Ridge

Image
Rays of sunshine battling to break through over Stob Ban

Image
A wall of cloud scuds in fast and low over Sgurr an Iubhair and the lochan at the head of Coire a' Mhusgain

Image
Sunshine on Stob Ban now

Image
Blue skies over Sgurr a' Mhaim and the Devil's Ridge becoming more defined in the sun

Image
Zooming in on the scene of my hairiest mountain moment to date

One of the highlights for me on that day back in April had been the view from the descent off Sgurr an Iubhair across the head of Coire a' Mhusgain to the rugged buttresses of Stob Ban. That day it had seemed to be less covered in snow than most of the Ring of Steall had been, but the fine lines of white fringing its crags and buttresses had given it a magical aura. In fact, one comment posted in reply to my report on that day had said that it looked like the mountain was just poised, ready to crumble. And so I was really looking forward to this part of the day and wasn't disappointed, even if things did close in a little as we got higher.

Image
Stob Ban in all her glory

Image
Robin and Lucy forging ahead

Image
Down the ascent ridge and over to Sgurr a'Mhaim and Sgurr an Iubhair

Image
More cloud billowing in

Image
Around the side of Stob Ban to the Ben and the Halfway Lochan

Image
Low cloud taking a firm grip again

Image
The white stuff which gives this fine mountain its name

By the time we summited, the rain was back on and the only colour on display was grey. We even got a severe but short lived pelting from a hail shower before I managed to settle up the stand for a self timed congratulatory summit shot.

Image
Robin and Lucy on the final approach to the summit

Image
Just after our hailstone exfoliation

In the best traditions of the Law of Sod, things cleared again on the descent down to the broad, flat bealach above the lochan to the north west of Stob Ban as the white gave way to the oranges and reds of Mullach nan Coirean and its associated Tops.

Image
Dropping north down off the summit

Image
One of the vast north eastern buttresses

Image
Scree sliding down to the bealach

Image
Red now becoming the dominant colour scheme

Image
Across the wee lochan and down Coire Dheirg into Glen Nevis below

Image
Robin at the subsidiary cairn at the start of the curving ridge around to Mullach nan Coirean

Image
Oh, where did I get that hat?

The weather then played ball and, bar the odd wispy cloud passing by on a fairly low trajectory, it stayed fairly settled for the remainder of the walk, or at least until the business end of the walk was over and we were descending the north east ridge of Mullach nan Coirean towards the forestry.

Image
Skirting the crags and up towards the 917m point

Image
Myself and Lucy investigating the rock finger

Image
Mullach nan Coirean across the corner of Choire Dheirg

Image
Kinlochleven through the clouds

Image
Looking back over the corner of Choire Dheirg

Image
On the large flat area between the 917m point and the second Munro summit

Image
Glen Nevis, Sgurr a' Mhaim and the long north ridge of Stob Ban

From the summit of Mullach nan Coirean we enjoyed a stunning set of vistas back across all but the most distant of the Mamores, north over Fort William and the Ben and west across Loch Linnhe to Ardgour. 8)

Image
Summit of the Mullach

Image
Full of Eastern Promise - the Mamores from Mullach nan Coirean

Image
Whence we came

We stuck to the north east ridge on our descent until it joined the forestry at the new looking stile, although there was the mother of all bogs to negotiate on the lower slopes, where Robin's new Osprey pack was duly christened (if you can imagine!) :(

Image
A distant Stob Ban from the start of the descent off Mullach nan Coirean

Image
Looking the Ben straight in the eye

Image
Sgurr a' Mhaim shining in the sunlight

Image
It's as if the water courses have been drawn onto the landscape and coloured in!

Image
Stob Ban of the Grey Corries shining bright away up beyond the end of Glen Nevis

Image
Rainbow welcoming us back down into Glen Nevis


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

User avatar
Graeme D
 
Posts: 3617
Munros:225   Corbetts:107
Grahams:65   Donalds:22
Sub 2000:56   Hewitts:36
Wainwrights:27   Islands:6
Joined: Oct 17, 2008
Location: Perth

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby Fudgie » Thu Aug 02, 2012 5:24 pm

Wonderful stuff. Like yourself I admired Stob Ban from Sgurr a' Mhaim and your report is putting it at the top of my to do list. That ridge between the two summits looked like a great walk.
User avatar
Fudgie
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 997
Munros:100   Corbetts:20
Grahams:3   Donalds:7
Joined: Aug 30, 2010
Location: Port Glasgow

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby jonny616 » Thu Aug 02, 2012 5:26 pm

Good stuff Mr D. Did these the other way around as a reckie before doing the ring of steall for a wee look at the devils ridge. Full sympathy re the on of water proofs & the midge :lol:

The area could be my fav so far.
User avatar
jonny616
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1572
Munros:280   Corbetts:13
Grahams:2   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:17
Wainwrights:8   Islands:7
Joined: Aug 19, 2009

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby HighlandSC » Thu Aug 02, 2012 5:29 pm

Cracking report Graeme. It's a stunning route. Glad you got some great views on a sketchy day. On doing this circuit I entered thick clag at about 300m and that was it for the day! Must go back on a good day.

And don't you think the route drawing looks like the shape of a pigs head.
User avatar
HighlandSC
 
Posts: 2180
Munros:33   Corbetts:4
Grahams:2   
Sub 2000:14   
Islands:8
Joined: Jul 12, 2009
Location: USA (formerly Inverness)

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby Graeme D » Thu Aug 02, 2012 5:45 pm

Fudgie wrote:Wonderful stuff. Like yourself I admired Stob Ban from Sgurr a' Mhaim and your report is putting it at the top of my to do list. That ridge between the two summits looked like a great walk.


It certainly is Fudgie, and the thing is that although you can appreciate Stob Ban from the RoS, you don't get the full picture of the walk from it over to MnC. Now, get yourself up there pronto man! :lol:

jonny616 wrote:The area could be my fav so far.


I think I might be with you on that one jonny! 8)

HighlandSC wrote:Cracking report Graeme. It's a stunning route. Glad you got some great views on a sketchy day. On doing this circuit I entered thick clag at about 300m and that was it for the day! Must go back on a good day.

And don't you think the route drawing looks like the shape of a pigs head.


:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: Yeah, now you come to mention it! :shock:

Sketchy - that's probably the best way to describe the day weather-wise. We kind of winged it a bit weather-wise and got more good than bad. 8)
User avatar
Graeme D
 
Posts: 3617
Munros:225   Corbetts:107
Grahams:65   Donalds:22
Sub 2000:56   Hewitts:36
Wainwrights:27   Islands:6
Joined: Oct 17, 2008
Location: Perth

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby gammy leg walker » Thu Aug 02, 2012 6:33 pm

Fine report once again Graeme,shame you had low cloud on Stob Ban the views are brilliant,like you & Jonny these two are at the top of my favorite list also.
User avatar
gammy leg walker
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 3348
Munros:262   Corbetts:7
Grahams:4   Donalds:3
Sub 2000:2   
Islands:7
Joined: Jan 30, 2010
Location: Central Region
Walk wish-list

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby mrssanta » Thu Aug 02, 2012 9:28 pm

one thing about all the wet, the colours are fantastic including so much green
User avatar
mrssanta
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 3048
Munros:252   Corbetts:11
Grahams:3   
Sub 2000:9   Hewitts:44
Wainwrights:40   Islands:8
Joined: Jul 18, 2011
Location: north yorkshire moors

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby morag1 » Fri Aug 03, 2012 6:37 pm

Wow! and this from the guy who said he'd lost his mojo :eh:

Lovely photos but I must say it looks a bit too wet for me :lol:
morag1
 

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby Johnny Corbett » Fri Aug 03, 2012 7:17 pm

Great stuff, i never tire of the Mamores. They're a great sight and super walks, 3 outings it took me and all of them superb :D
User avatar
Johnny Corbett
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 2953
Munros:21   Corbetts:207
Grahams:162   Donalds:74
Sub 2000:286   Hewitts:1
Islands:14
Joined: May 14, 2010
Location: Livingston

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby old danensian » Fri Aug 03, 2012 8:37 pm

Some great moody cloud shots there Graeme - sometimes the in-and-out sort of day those conditions provide have the most character and can be the most memorable.

OD
User avatar
old danensian
 
Posts: 418
Munros:282   Corbetts:64
Donalds:9
Hewitts:108
Wainwrights:150   
Joined: Jul 6, 2009
Location: Ayrshire

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby pigeon » Fri Aug 03, 2012 8:44 pm

A right mixed bag weather wise there Graeme,good hills these though and another great report :thumbup:
User avatar
pigeon
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 1384
Munros:282   Corbetts:94
Grahams:38   Donalds:35
Sub 2000:19   Hewitts:2
Wainwrights:1   Islands:2
Joined: Apr 29, 2010
Location: Linlithgow

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby kevsbald » Sat Aug 04, 2012 1:34 pm

Nice one G. I think Stob Ban is a seriously under-rated hill. Is that the Mamores all done then?
User avatar
kevsbald
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 2176
Munros:264   Corbetts:119
Grahams:76   Donalds:51
Sub 2000:13   Hewitts:9
Wainwrights:15   
Joined: Jan 15, 2009
Location: Glasgow

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby ChrisW » Sat Aug 04, 2012 3:20 pm

Great report Graeme, the weather looks a lot more like spring than summer but still a wonderful day. I think your mate got the short straw on the holiday front though :wink:
User avatar
ChrisW
Rambler
 
Posts: 4940
Munros:18   Corbetts:5
Grahams:3   
Sub 2000:6   
Joined: Jan 25, 2011
Location: Cochrane- Alberta - Canada

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby PeteR » Sat Aug 04, 2012 5:14 pm

Very nice indeed Graeme :D I absolutely love the Mamores and these two were my introduction to these hills :D Glad you got an appearance from the big yellow thing hanging in some of that nice blue stuff :D Although the cloud does add to the atmospere in some of your photos.

Not sure about that hat though :lol:
User avatar
PeteR
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 2060
Munros:282   Corbetts:158
Grahams:89   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:177   Hewitts:3
Islands:9
Joined: Jan 27, 2010
Location: North Ayrshire

Re: From White to Red & Grey to Blue - Stob Ban and the Mull

Postby Bod » Sat Aug 04, 2012 7:57 pm

Great report Graeme, I can't wait to get out round these two, been pondering too long since my trip around the Ring of Steall! There is something very special about being in the mountains after there has been a good amount of rain and the torents are swirling in the streams and falls. Wonderful stuff......see you soon :D :D :D
User avatar
Bod
Walker
 
Posts: 1539
Munros:282   Corbetts:52
Grahams:30   Donalds:20
Sub 2000:42   Hewitts:9
Wainwrights:7   Islands:24
Joined: Jul 30, 2010
Location: Cowdenbeath

4 people think this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
Next



Walkhighlands community forum is advert free

We need help to keep the site online.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by setting up a monthly donation by direct debit?



Return to Walk reports - Scotland

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: martin.h and 59 guests