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Perfect winter day on Stob Binnien (almost)

Perfect winter day on Stob Binnien (almost)


Postby weaselmaster » Sun Dec 02, 2012 8:54 pm

Route description: Ben More and Stob Binnein

Munros included on this walk: Ben More, Stob Binnein

Date walked: 02/12/2012

Time taken: 5.3 hours

Distance: 12.6 km

Ascent: 1308m

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Having not been able to get out on the hills yesterday I was delighted to have another lovely clear day. Up a bit late (out for a farewell dinner for a colleague in Glasgow yesterday and a little bit of red wine :wink: ) so didn't get away from the house til almost 8am. Was a bit anxious about the roads being icy going up the side of Loch Lomond, but they were fine. Arrived at the layby past Benmore Farm at about 9.15 - a good half dozen cars parked up at the walk start itself, so it wasn't going to be a day of solitude this weekend. Something told me to check my camera before setting off and - guess what - I'd forgotten to put the memory card in. Damn - a perfect day for limitless vistas of snowy hills and no camera... the shots today are therefore from my phone :(

I'd been up Ben More 5 weeks ago in the first real snow of this winter, but had to turn back at the summit instead of carrying on to SB because of clag and snow. So today I was only planning to do Stob Binnien and set off along the "return" path along the side of Benmore burn. The track was icy and treacherous in places. Got my first view of SB which I'd not been able to glimpse last time round.

Image
IMG-20121202-01434 by 23weasels, on Flickr

After 4 km turned up onto the side of the hill, following the frozen stream. Started the pull up to the bealach in soft snow from about 500m, but near the top of the slope the snow was becoming hard and slippy so it was time for the crampons. Reached the bealach at about 11.30 and headed up SB, meeting a couple of guys on the downward path. Absolutely stunning views in every direction, particularly over to Stob Garbh and Cruach Ardrain which were gleaming in the sun.

Image
IMG-20121202-01446 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Was about 30 minutes up to the top of SB - hard to pay attention to the footing when there was such beauty around. Met up with another couple of climbers at the top and had a bite to eat. Amazing views and almost no wind.

Image
IMG-20121202-01447 by 23weasels, on Flickr

headed off back down to the bealach - there was no way on a day like this that I wasn't going up Ben More too... Several patches of ice under the snow and a bit of a steep finish to the ascent of BM but the views over to the north were great.

Image
IMG-20121202-01456 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Image
IMG-20121202-01453 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Image
IMG-20121202-01457 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Those back towards SB weren't bad either :)

Image
IMG-20121202-01455 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Just headed down the north side of BM to head back to the car - I'd done this previously in snow and clag so it was great to see it in snow and clarity.

Image
IMG-20121202-01458 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Image
IMG-20121202-01459 by 23weasels, on Flickr

The descent was quite tricky once past the snow line as all the boggy/streamy bits along the path had frozen solid into a ribbon of ice. Slipped a couple of times :roll: Then it was back to the car along the frozen farm track, which wasn't much easier and I had an audience of sheep to watch for any amusing stumbles. Got back to the car for 3pm and already the light is beginning to dim. Been a fantastic day however.

Today's learning points - keep a spare memory card for the camera in the rucksack. And I could have done with some sunglasses too as the dazzle from the bright sun on the snow going up BM was a bit on the zap your eyes side.
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weaselmaster
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Re: Perfect winter day on Stob Binnien (almost)

Postby Collaciotach » Sun Dec 02, 2012 9:36 pm

Top pictures a bhalaich a grand day out :D
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Collaciotach
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Re: Perfect winter day on Stob Binnien (almost)

Postby old danensian » Tue Dec 04, 2012 8:39 pm

Great day out across the way from you on Cruach Ardrain

My normal trick is to forget to put fresh batteries in my camera - and the spares I carry are inevitably the dud ones from the previous trip that I've forgotten to recharge - what did we do before phones?

OD
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old danensian
 
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Re: Perfect winter day on Stob Binnien (almost)

Postby weaselmaster » Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:38 pm

old danensian wrote:Great day out across the way from you on Cruach Ardrain

My normal trick is to forget to put fresh batteries in my camera - and the spares I carry are inevitably the dud ones from the previous trip that I've forgotten to recharge - what did we do before phones?

OD


Yeah, I've done the dud battery trick as well - though fortunately not on such a perfect day for snaps. There's probably no end to the number of "extra" things you could stuff in the sack for those "just in case" moments - and then you'd still find the most important bit missing :roll:
The phone at least allowed a poor resolution version of something better - but every time i wanted to use it I had to key in the code to unlock the thing, which is far from easy with gloves on and a wee keyboard.
Haven't been up Tulaichean & Ardrain yet - that slippy slidy road along to them kinda puts me off driving there at the moment :cry:
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weaselmaster
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Posts: 1716
Munros:203   Corbetts:157
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Sub 2000:163   Hewitts:31
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Location: Greenock

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