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Ben Oss and Beinn Dubhcraig

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Ben Oss and Beinn Dubhcraig


Postby bio-man » Sun Aug 31, 2008 8:59 pm

Date walked: 31/08/2008

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Ben Oss and Beinn Dubhcraig route description

PART 2

After an excellent breakfast in the Crianlarich Station cafe, my mate from work, Dougie and I headed to Dalrigh to take in these two Munros. I've been up and down a few times. Took in Beinn Laoigh as well on one very long day and have approached from the Drovers end of Loch Lomond.

Today was the 'straighforward' route as described. I use the term 'straightforward' very loosely as these two mountains are very difficult in poor visibility. Today, the cloud base was at 500m, so map and compass skills were tested to the fore. GPS came out as well, there's nothing better than an accurate grid ref when you need it most!!

The track through the Caledonian is unbelievably boggy!! In fact the whole day was wet!! Once on the main slopes the paths aren't obvious and an accurate bearing is necessary or you can drift off towards Ben Oss. The gusts had picked up, but ther's reasonable shelter at the summit. We met a gut there who had been intending to climb Ben Oss but had lost his bearings and had made for Beinn Dubchraig. Knowing how to use a map and compass is not to be under-estimated. Indeed, our conclusion of the day was that a refresher course was necessary!!

On towards Ben Oss takes you past the lochans that are used as a marker for the descent. The route takes a tricky section down to Bealach Buidhe. This route is VERY tricky in the wet. It is also very loose. Once on the bealach there are small lochans which are NOT used as a marker!! The cairn mentioned as the sign to the stalkers path is small!! and can be almost missed!! We set a course for the 941m top. It seemed the best thing to do in the conditions and allowed a straightforward push to the summit. Shelter is minimal and we had to descend to 2 large boulders for food. The return ascent from Bealach Buidhe is still tricky. Once past, keep the lochans on your left. We chose a different descent, to avoid the forest. From the last lochan, aim NNE down an easy ridge, aiming for two hillocks just before Creag Bhocan. At the hillocks, aim NW down an easy slope into Glean Cononish. Cross the bridge to the farm and the dry track back to the car!!

Aim for 8 - 9 hours in poor conditions and don't forget the GPS!!

No photos!!! 50 feet visibility at best!!
Attachments
Beinn Oss and Beinn  Lui2.jpg
Bealach betweeb Beinn Dubhchraig 978m and Ben Oss 1029m2.jpg
bio-man
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Re: Ben Oss and Beinn Dubhcraig

Postby Paul Webster » Mon Sep 01, 2008 11:40 am

Yes - we found it extremely boggy and confusing terrain in poor visibility too!

I think heading down off Beinn Dubhcraig to the bealach below Ben Oss is an excellent example of where a GPS can be a huge help. There are little rows of broken crags running across the line of the route and (unless you've found the path, which we only did on the way back) this sort of terrain makes it very hard to keep on a compass bearing, as the ground keeps leading you off route and it is difficult to keep correcting for that. Whereas a GPS (if working and your batteries are ok!) of course takes into account that you've had to go a bit the wrong way automatically.

We followed the stalkers path too far on Ben Oss before heading up and only really sorted out the best line on the way back. Incidentally if you've got a GPS and the weather isn't good, it can be worth loading the route from Walkhighlands onto it; if you choose to 'Follow' the route but put the GPS onto a map type view, then the line of the path will then be shown on your GPS screen, which I think can be a big help on a route like this one. We're going to put a little guide together on different ways to use a GPS to help navigation.
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Re: Ben Oss and Beinn Dubhcraig

Postby Dirk Winter » Mon Sep 01, 2008 7:45 pm

Good to read about your experiences. We had put this walk on an extended list of possible routes for our latest holiday, but it was far from being a must do. After having read your comments it will be far from being even on a specially super extended list of walks. Sounds like there are many other walks to try first.
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Re: Ben Oss and Beinn Dubhcraig

Postby bio-man » Tue Sep 02, 2008 6:42 pm

Would agree with you there Dirk, although on a clear day, the view over to Beinn Laoigh makes it worth the while. Of all the Tyndrum Hills, Beinn Laoigh either from the Dalmally side of from Cononish Farm is unbeatable and should be near the top of anyone's list!!
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Re: Ben Oss and Beinn Dubhcraig

Postby bio-man » Tue Sep 02, 2008 6:52 pm

Funny enough Paul, the descent to the bealach was the easiest navigation-wise! The feature-less last third ascent to BD was the most difficult. haven't gotten round to program routes in yet!! Although, to look at your 'actual' route in the comfort of home can be a 'learning curve'!! I've seen the MRT's route when they came to get me. They had been sent to the wrong coire and the 90 degree variation when the mistake was realised was unmistakeable and a very sobering thought!!
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Re: Ben Oss and Beinn Dubhcraig

Postby Dirk Winter » Wed Sep 03, 2008 7:11 pm

bio-man wrote:Would agree with you there Dirk, although on a clear day, the view over to Beinn Laoigh makes it worth the while.


That's exactly why I had put it on my list! Well, maybe if I'd happen to be in Scotland at the end of a six weeks' draught I'd give it a try. ;-) But normally I can't predict that when planning a holiday in Scotland.
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Re: Ben Oss and Beinn Dubhcraig

Postby bio-man » Wed Sep 03, 2008 9:57 pm

It's the approach from Dalrigh towards Cononish Farm that shows Beinn Laoigh in it's finest!! As the Coire Gaothaich approaches, knowing that, fairly shortly, you're going to be in there is pretty awesome, especially if it's still holding snow!!
Attachments
Beinn Laoigh and the Coire Gaothaich2.jpg
Not the best photo I've ever taken!!!
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Re: Ben Oss and Beinn Dubhcraig

Postby Dirk Winter » Thu Sep 04, 2008 9:04 pm

I just remember that we stayed one night in a B&B in Dalrigh this July. I think it was called "The Old Church" (or something like that). Might be a good starting point for an evening stroll. But it was very clowdy and raining when we were there anyway. So there was no awesome view waiting for us. Maybe next time...
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