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North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

North Quoich Munros on a sunny day


Postby rockhopper » Tue Feb 26, 2013 10:35 pm

Route description: Gleouraich and Spidean Mialach

Munros included on this walk: Gleouraich, Sgurr a'Mhaoraich, Spidean Mialach

Date walked: 24/02/2013

Time taken: 10 hours

Distance: 24 km

Ascent: 2250m

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Munros: Spidean Mialach, Gleouraich and Sgurr a'Mhaoraich
Date: Sunday 24 February 2013
Time taken: 10hrs (incl stops 2hrs 30mins – gazing at views, food, sunset stops, dawdling etc)
Distance: 24km
Ascent: 2,250m
Attendees: me

Fingers crossed all week that the good weather would remain until the weekend. Planned to head up to Loch Quoich for Spidean Mialach and Gleouraich on the Saturday but Friday’s forecast suggested Sunday would be better.

Was hoping to be up there around sunrise – got up [ridiculously] early and had an uneventful drive up to Loch Quoich where the temperature dipped to -5C. Parked in the wee layby opposite the end of the track down from Gleouraich beside the construction works and pipes. Then walked back down the road a bit to start up the track for Spidean Mialach - thought anti-clockwise may be better so that the easterly wind would be behind me on the ridge but, as it turned out, there was hardly any wind most of the day.

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Good stalkers path up the hillside with most of the bogs frozen over. Was soon roasting hot as there was hardly any wind and the sun was gradually rising.

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Got to the bit where I had to cross the Allt a’Mheil – this turned out to be quite straightforward as the water was relatively low and only had to go a few yards uphill to get to some decent stepping stones.

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Continued on in a NE direction – looking back could see over Loch Fearna towards Gairich.

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Southwards
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Northwards
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Further up there were some previous footprints in the snow – took a slightly more northerly approach to gain the ridge first before heading east to the summit as the straight line looked a wee bit on the steep side.

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Got to the top with some nice views all round. Couldn’t believe my luck with the weather.

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Then headed off towards Gleouraich which I could see in the distance.

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Looking back to Spidean Mialach.
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Good walk along the ridge being careful not to go too near the edge as there was some cornicing.

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There were some tricky bits in the snow but nothing too serious and I was soon climbing up towards the summit of Gleouraich.

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Met two walkers at the top who were from Yorkshire and were on their annual walking week – the weather this year was looking somewhat better than they had last year.

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More views and photos at the top along with more food to keep me going.

Then it was a case of heading westwards down the ridge before picking up the stalkers path further down.

Steep drop down to the loch and the bridge.

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Picked up the path and followed it back to the car.

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Arrived back at the car somewhat earlier than planned – it was not long after midday, lovely weather and still 5-6hrs left of daylight. Seemed a shame to head back to Glasgow so I drove west over the bridge and managed to squeeze into the wee layby beside two other cars at the foot of stalkers path to Sgurr a'Mhaoraich.

Had some more food, got ready and set off up the path just after 1pm. Climbed steadily under the pylons with the path zigzagging – again mostly frozen bogs made for dry feet with snow line much further up.

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It was getting a bit cloudier by now but the sun was still out.

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The snow didn’t really start until I got up to Sgurr Coire nan Eiricheallach – there were some steep sections but was soon up and over and could see the way to Sgurr a'Mhaoraich. It did look steep and a bit worrying with the snow cover.

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Anyway, continued on along the ridge until the start of the last steep section. I could see two people up near the summit but then lost sight as I started up the hillside. It did turn out to be very steep in places with some steep drops – doable going up the way but decided that there was no way I was going to try going back down the same way so would need to have a rethink.

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Got up to the top before the final walk up to the summit. Could see the other two walkers had had the same thought about descent route and were headed down in a southerly direction towards Leac nan Gaidhseich.

Walked up to the summit for some photos – camera started misbehaving again at this point but managed to get some pictures. Also managed to get a phone signal to phone home and say I’d be a lot later than planned. Some cloud had been rolling in from the east and it looked as though there could be some snow so decided to head off in case it worsened.

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Decided against following the other two walkers down as I could see some crags further down. Instead I took a wide berth south then east managing to pick up some grassy ground and less steep slopes before climbing back up to rejoin the route I’d taken on the ascent.

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Looking back
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Then it was just a case of following the ascent route back down.

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Dawdled and stopped a few times as the sun was getting lower and I was hoping for a sunset over the westerly hills with some low sunlight over Gleouraich. Didn’t disappoint though my basic camera doesn’t do justice.

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Back to the car, changed and drove back home to Glasgow. Think this was the first time I’d been along this road towards Knoydart and hadn’t appreciated until now just how nice it is albeit that good weather does help.

Strong moonlight most of the way down – tried a long exposure at the end of Glencoe and you can just about make out the outline in this photo:
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rockhopper
 
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby pigeon » Tue Feb 26, 2013 11:07 pm

That "basic" camera of yours takes a no bad pic RH :lol: Love it down this way and you did well taking full advantage of a cracking day.Seen your post on Frigates report from Gairich,just missed you again eh? :wink:
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby Alan S » Tue Feb 26, 2013 11:21 pm

Excellent report and pics mate,some of those pics are real belters 8)
I loved spidean mialach and Gleouraich and done it the same way as you but my views were rotten, loved that stalkers path on the way down 8)
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby Bod » Tue Feb 26, 2013 11:39 pm

Ooooh rockhopper....still to get here to these 3! It was fun waiting for the sun to rise fully in your cracking photos, impressive use of your day! You must be feeling well fit at the mo :D :D :clap:
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby Fudgie » Wed Feb 27, 2013 10:44 am

Excellent stuff as ever rockhopper, I intend to tackle Spidean Mialach and Gleouraich this summer so you've manage to wet my appetite for them 8)
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby dooterbang » Wed Feb 27, 2013 11:36 am

I'm glad you finally took the plunge and ventured down this road. The views over to Knoydart are stunning (in good weather), and also over to Kintail.

I've still to do Sgurr a'Mhaoraich and going by your report will be very careful.

Bet your glad you stayed out and got that lovely sunset :)

Cheers.
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby dogplodder » Wed Feb 27, 2013 12:05 pm

Feast for the eyes! :D
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby DrMagpie » Wed Feb 27, 2013 12:47 pm

Fantastic photos. Looks like you had a great day!
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby Frigate » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:47 pm

Hi RH, waiting a day paid dividends, looked a great day out with excellent photos. Still to do a'Mhaoraich myself, from your stills the wife said thats one for her as well.
Hope the weather is as kind this coming weekend in Torridon
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby Scotjamie » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:42 pm

Stunning stuff rh
Did the two in clag and its great to see what I missed. Promising myself to get a day like yours for a Mhaoraich. Photos brilliant as always.
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby gammy leg walker » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:51 pm

Some cracking pictures once again RH when I saw this report,just new you would climb the 3 and not 2/
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby johnkaysleftleg » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:59 pm

Some truly awesome pics :clap: , just how are you going to chose your pic of the month entry :lol:
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby Johnny Corbett » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:05 pm

Photos are stunning Rockhopper. It's a great area this with some of the best views in the land. :D
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby jonny616 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 10:16 pm

Wow. What a difference a week makes managed the first one in the clag & did not fancy rounding the corniced ridge with zero viability. Which having seen your pics was the right option on two counts. One being not falling through one and the second picking a day like that to go back. Nice one. :)
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Re: North Quoich Munros on a sunny day

Postby quoman » Wed Feb 27, 2013 10:28 pm

What a day you had stunning from start to finnish.
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