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Sgurr Choinnich and Sgurr a'Chaorachain

Sgurr Choinnich and Sgurr a'Chaorachain

Postby kenny3760 » Wed Feb 20, 2013 3:48 pm

Route description: Sgùrr Chòinnich and Sgùrr a'Chaorachain

Munros included on this walk: Sgùrr a' Chaorachain, Sgùrr Chòinnich

Date walked: 19/02/2013

Time taken: 8 hours

Distance: 20 km

Ascent: 1330m

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With the weather looking good once again I headed over to Craig to try and get another couple of Munros in my bag. Sgurr Choinnich and Sgurr a Chaorachain were the targets I was aiming for.
The walk along the landrover track to the bridge crossing is easy enough and lets you get warmed up before the real graft starts. The river was low enough to wade across the stones on, so I gave the wire rope bridge a miss.
After this there is a nice stalkers path that leads the way up to Bealach Bhearnais. Most of this path was fine with only the occasional section transformed into sheet ice. There were a couple of larger patches of snow higher up, but nothing difficult. I stopped at the bealach and had some lunch, before headin up Squrr Choinnich. Again most of this was fine, a few bits of scrambling and a few parts where the snow and ice required a bit of care. I reached the top and met 3 others from a climbing club from down south who were on holiday for a week.
They had been intending to go on to Sgurr a Chaorachain but thought they were moving too slowly to make it, so we said goodbye and I headed on. Along the ridge then down before starting the climb to Sgurr a'Chaorachain. Parts of the descent were completely covered in very hard snow and required a fair bit of care to get down. The ascent also saw me cutting steps in a few places to aid me getting over some parts.
The summit was completely covered in very hard snow and ice, just as well it's pretty large and flat up there. The views were simply breathtaking on such a clear day.
I started my descent which was pretty slippy so a bit of care required again. My original plan had been to head down onto Sron na Frainich, head west a bit and pick up the path shown on the map beside An Crom Allt. However, as I reached the botom reaches of the snow field I decided I'd just head straight on. It looks steep but I reckoned I could see a route down. As it turns out I had headed for the steepest part of the hill where there were several drops of 10-15 feet over rock faces. It took me 3 or 4 attempts of climbing up, down and acroos to eventually find a managable route. Unfortunately during this I had a slip and stabbed myself with the tip of my walking axe in my right armpit. At the time it hurt pretty bad but as there felt as though there was no blood flow I assumed that it had not penetrated and that I was going to have the mother of all bruises. Itwas pretty painful to put any pressure on my right shoulder though. I got down and headed out along the track as dusk was falling.
When I got home I checked my armpit. I was amazed to find a hole about an inch and a half long and an inch deep there. There had been no blood flow. My son drove me to Raigmore, and I got 4 stitches put in it, I was told I had been very lucky as there was no nerve, tendon or muscle damage. My softshell is not holed although the fleece and baselayer are. I cna only assume the softshell not holing saved me from a far worse injury.

Heres some pictures, enjoy.

Achnashellach Hills (3).JPG
Achnashellach Hills on the way in

Beinn Tharsuinn.JPG
Beinn Tharsuinn

Sgurr Choinnich Ascent.JPG
Sgurr Choinnich Ascent

Sgurr Choinnich (2).JPG
Sgurr Choinnich Summit

Sgurr a Chaorachain Summit.JPG
Sgurr a'Chaorachain Summit

Sgurr a chaorachain Summit (3).JPG
Sgurr a'Chaorachain Summit

Sgurr a'Chaorachain Summit

Loch Monar.JPG
Loch Monar

Ice Axe wound.JPG
Ice Axe wound
Sgurr a Chaorachain.JPG
Sgurr a'Chaorachain
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Re: Sgurr Choinnich and Sgurr a'Chaorachain

Postby dogplodder » Wed Feb 20, 2013 4:37 pm

Ouch that sounds painful and could have been so much worse if you'd lost blood with such a long walk out. Hope you're not feeling too sore. :?

Your photos are fantastic though! :thumbup:
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Re: Sgurr Choinnich and Sgurr a'Chaorachain

Postby SAVAGEALICE » Wed Feb 20, 2013 6:05 pm

ouch! :shock:
crackin pics :D
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Re: Sgurr Choinnich and Sgurr a'Chaorachain

Postby soapy27 » Wed Feb 20, 2013 6:56 pm

Great report and photos in perfect conditions :clap:
That looks a sore one
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Re: Sgurr Choinnich and Sgurr a'Chaorachain

Postby PeteR » Wed Feb 20, 2013 11:10 pm

Super photos from two great hills :D What a great day you had for them :D

Nasty little injury though :shock: Ouch
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