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Ben Lui - bogs and snow

Ben Lui - bogs and snow


Postby weaselmaster » Sun Nov 11, 2012 9:36 pm

Munros included on this walk: Beinn a'Chleibh, Ben Lui

Date walked: 11/11/2012

Time taken: 6.15 hours

Distance: 12 km

Ascent: 1111m

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Reasonably good forecast for clear skies today, so off from Greenock at 6.30. Gritters were out in force on the roads, but it didn't seem icy. Got up to the car park at Glen Lochay at 8.15. Had researched "crossing the river" and I thought we had it sussed by bringing some heavy duty rubbish sacks - which worked pretty well other than getting a few little holes on the rocks on the river bottom - it was only about a foot and a half at its deepest. Stashed the bags for the return crossing but didn't realise that the creep under the wee railway bridge was actually deeper water...

Then it was up through the trees along pretty boggy ground. managed to miss the little cairn that takes you down to the right towards the waterfall, and went maybe 500m too far on - found another place to cross the stream and headed through the trees. The boggy bits were really deep when we rejoined the path - fortunately there were some planks along the way to balance precariously on. Through the gate and out of the woods, it's a long slog up the hillside. Path is reasonably clear most of the way up.

Hit a gently snow line at about 850 metres but it was crisp and shallow and I didn't see any need to crampon up at this point. We'd been following a guy from Rutherglen up but he went off to the right, whilst we followed the WH route which skirts round to the left until you come upon the crags. Got some good views down the slopes over to Sgiath Dhubh and Ben Oss before the clouds came down - unfortunately remained poor visibility all the time we were at the top. Single raven put on quite a display as we were coming up this part of the hill.

Walking up the crags up from the central gully the snow got deeper and there were a couple of bits of minor scrambling in the snow. Pleased that the dog managed well, though he kept wandering rather closer to the edge than I felt comfortable with. After a bit more slipping about we decided that the crampons were better on our boots than in the sacks and that helped the last little section to the cairn. Stopped to give the dog a digestive biscuit and then tracked back a little way to find the path going down to the North towards the bealach and Beinn a'Chleibh. Mist was still swirling around until we got most of the way down - stopped to have a cup of soup and something to eat once we got to the big rocks near the bealach.

Sun was trying to come through as we trotted up the easy path up Beinn a'Chleibh and we got glimpses of Ben Lui, but better views over towards Ben Cruachan. The top of B a'C was a bit of a disappointment after the charms of Lui, as it's so flat and featureless. Got up to the cairn then turned around and came back, choosing the path that leads downhill from the middle of the bealach back to the forestry gate. Back through the mud, this time finding the intended crossing over the stream by the waterfall with the blue rope at head height to balance when you get over the rocks. Slippy on the other side! Back through the woods and the bogs, feeling pleasantly tired. Decided to just get on with it wading through the railway bridge bit and rely on boots & gaiters, which was actually fine, although I cracked my head on the undersurface of the bridge pretty hard and now have a little "egg" that wouldn't be out of place in "The Beano".

Headed back to Tyndrum for a pint, marvelling in the view of Ben More & Stob Binien as we drove there. A good day out, again :clap:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/29312277@N08/sets/72157631983971079/
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weaselmaster
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Re: Ben Lui - bogs and snow

Postby dogplodder » Mon Nov 12, 2012 11:13 am

I like your river crossing bin bags! I did the same crossing a thigh-deep river with clothes pegs to hold the bags up so I could use both poles for stability against the current. Looked a proper sight. :lol:
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Re: Ben Lui - bogs and snow

Postby weaselmaster » Mon Nov 12, 2012 12:40 pm

Yeah, they worked quite well, but did get some little holes torn in the bottoms of them against the river rocks. I think another bag inside to wrap around the boot would have helped. Keeping them up - well clothespegs a novel solution - it was helpful having poles to prod the depth - can't imagine going thru thigh deep water (at least in November) bin bags or not though!
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weaselmaster
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Location: Greenock

Re: Ben Lui - bogs and snow

Postby Fudgie » Mon Nov 12, 2012 3:34 pm

Like you, I missed the split in the path although with hindsight it was a good thing as the bit of the path I missed on the way up was horrendous :shock:
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Re: Ben Lui - bogs and snow

Postby McLEOD » Mon Nov 12, 2012 4:15 pm

Good wee read and some no bad pics,
thats some rope bridge :lol:
cheers :thumbup:
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