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Sgor Gaoith

Sgor Gaoith


Postby RicKamila » Sun Jul 28, 2013 12:06 pm

Route description: Sgor Gaoith, from Glen Feshie

Munros included on this walk: Sgor Gaoith

Date walked: 27/07/2013

Time taken: 7 hours

Distance: 15.7 km

Ascent: 1088m

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So the bug has set in. It was only two days after bagging Bynack More and we were already sitting here on WH looking at what Munro we could conquer next. Mount Keen was being mooted as our second Munro, but we thought we would like to challenge ourselves for the second Munro, so we settled on Sgor Gaoith in beautiful Glen Feshie. Getting all excited about doubling our tally, we kept one eye on the weather forecast and felt our hearts drop when Saturday in Aviemore was showing as wet. Come Friday though, the forecast improved to a delighful 23C and we were packed and out the door heading for our now traditional McDonalds breakfast before the long drive to Aviemore. For the third time in a row, we arrived at our destination at 9am.


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We parked up at the car park on the Auchlean road just before we reached a bridge. There is an information board welcoming you to the Invereshie and Inshriach NNR. Passing alongside a green gate, the well made track leads you through some magnificent trees before reaching a boulder that indicates that we were now in the Cairngorms. A little information notice informed us that 24 hour CCTV is being used in this section of the NNR as there are nesting birds and wildlife being monitored. Immediately we see what looks like an Ospreys nest, high in the trees with a camera box next to it.

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The track starts to climb, although it is not very steep though and before too long you are above the tree line and the views start to become breathtaking.

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A fork in the path is reached and we followed the path to the left. This led to a small water crossing. Kamila crossed it fine, but Rick as usual, slipped and put his foot right into the water. One day Rick will master the art of walking on water...

The path is still climbing, but at a gentle rate as the views of the nearby Monadhliath's improve. We get our first glimpse of the Gael Charn ridge that will be our return route.

Image
Glen Feshie 1 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

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Glen Feshie 2 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

A cool breeze starts to blow as we carry on this gentle climb towards Sgor Gaoith. The track makes its way around the edge of a small hill as we make our way to the Allt a'Chrom Alltain. The path comes close in by the stream and we find some lovely little waterfalls which make a great spot to take a breather.

Image
Feshie Falls 1 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

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Feshie Falls 3 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

We reach the end of the path as it crosses the Allt a'Chrom Alltain and we stop to take in the massive grassy hill that we now need to climb to reach the summit. The walk report says that the best way to go is just south of east, so we get the compass out and take our bearings and find some rocks that are visible on the side of the hill are roughly that direction, so we use them as our visual point. Rick put his camera away and we started climbing.

About a third of the way up, Rick found a path heading south. We contemplated taking it, but couldn't be sure that it went the way we wanted. Kamila was keen just to climb straight up, which was a challenge in itself as we have never climbed a hill in this way before. A quick drink of water and the chance for Rick to take a couple of photos and we set off up the hill again.

Image
Sgor Gaoith 1 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

About halfway up we could see a trio at the bottom of the hill. They eventually reached the path that Rick found and then instead of climbing as we were, they took the path. Still enjoying the views, but finding the hill getting steeper, we carried on at a reasonable speed, but with regular stops to get our breath back. The clouds were rolling in, some looking menacing, which spurred us on to reach the summit before the heavens opened. We didn't fancy climbing up this slope in the wet.

After what seemed like forever, the hill started to flatten our and we could see the tip of the summit. We put our fleeces on as the sun had gone behind the clouds and the breeze was quite cold at this height. The views back down Glen Feshie were amazing.
Image
Sgor Gaoith 2 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

As we carried on towards the ridge, the mighty Braeriach loomed large in the background.

Image
Sgor Gaoith 3 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

As Rick started to take photos, the sun re-appeared from behind the clouds and then as we crossed the path on the ridge that leads to the summit, we were greeted by one of the most spectacular views we have ever seen in this country, Loch Einich from above.

Image
Loch Einich 1 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

We just couldn't believe how beautiful it was. The sun and clouds were changing the look of the landscape every few seconds. Kamila wanted to make for the summit a short distance away, but Rick with his camera just couldn't drag himself away from this view.

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Loch Einich 2 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

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Loch Einich 3 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

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Loch Einich Panorama by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

Eventually we started to head towards the summit, but Rick couldn't resist stopping every few seconds to take a photo.

Image
Loch Einich 4 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

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Loch Einich 7 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

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Loch Einich 9 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

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Loch Einich in Black and White by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

Finally we reached the summit. Sgor Gaoith, 1118m. Our second Munro in a week.

Image
Sgor Gaoith's Summit by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

We looked to the south and could see the three people we saw earlier appear, so assumed that path does lead to the summit or takes you to an easier part of the ridge to climb. To the north we could see the cairn on the summit of Sgoran Dubh Mor, a former Munro (1111m). We decided to head there for our lunch. We crossed the bealach and noted our return route across the Gael Charn ridge and began the climb to the cairn. The views opened up and we could see Meall a' Buachaille that we climbed three weeks earlier, Loch Morlich and Aviemore.

Image
Sgoran Dubh Mor 1 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

After a few minutes of walking from Sgor Gaoith, we reached the summit of Sgoran Dubh Mor.

Image
Sgoran Dubh Mor 2 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

This was our lunch time view.

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Sgoran Dubh Mor 3 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

Roast Chicken sandwiches always taste better when you have an amazing view in front of you. We sat here for ages. In the distance we could see the Moray Firth and the hills of the Black Isle. The southern Highland's were visible too. Rick went for a wander around the summit with his camera as Kamila relaxed in the sun.

Image
Sgoran Dubh Mor 4 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

Image
Cairngorm Mountains by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

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Loch Mich Ghille-choile by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

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Sgoran Dubh Mor Panorama by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

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Sgoran Dubh Mor 8 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

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Braeriach Panorama by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

Rick got back to where Kamila was resting. "Might change the rules of the photo competition to 10 entries per person" he laughed. We saw the three people heading down Sgor Gaoith and decided we would start to make our return too. Rick couldn't resist more photos though.

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Braeriach Looms by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

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Sgor Gaoith 4 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

We passed the trio as they started to climb Sgoran Dubh Mor and said a quick hello to them as we reached the our turn off point and made our way to the Gael Charn ridge for our descent.

Image
Geal Charn Ridge 1 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

It was easy going to start with as we went down the grassy side of the hill to reach the first of four hills. The climb up the first hill took hardly any time at all and as we got to the top, we could see a path that led around the second hill, so headed for that to save us having to climb this one. We are glad we chose this route. As we came towards some rocks, a Ptamigan female and her chick appeared. Rick managed to get in quite close to the female to take a photo before we left them alone and carried on to hill number three.

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Ptarmigan On The Geal Charn Ridge by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

Some gliders appeared from the nearby Cairngorm Gliding Club and kept circling us and showing off. Rick waved at one and it dipped its wings.

Image
Glider 1 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

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Glider 2 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

We reached the next hill and saw it was full of rocks and boulders. There was a path up it, but to get to it was a short descent down a slippery gravel path. We gingerly made our way down it, not wanting to slip over in full view of the gliders above.

Image
Geal Charn Ridge 3 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

We found a great spot to return to the path below, but could see a cairn in the distance, so decided to head as far along the ridge as we could whilst we were up here, before backtracking and making our way downhill. The trio had followed us as far as the second hill and were halfway through making their descent as we got back to the bit we had chosen for our return earlier.

Image
Geal Charn Ridge 4 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

This bit was the hardest bit of the whole walk. We were zig-zagging and side-stepping the whole way down. It was soft heather in most places, but there were some hidden rocks too as Rick found out when he grazzed his ankle against one. We used some trees in the distance as a marker and stopped for a drink once we reached them, still a good 100m up from the track. At this point, Rick noticed a cloud that looked like a Camel lying down, so just had to take a photo of it.

Image
Camel Cloud by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

Eventually we reached the original path and it felt so good to be back on terra firma. We looked up at what we had just climbed down.

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Geal Charn Ridge 5 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

The sun came out and it was time for our fleeces to come off again. We still had another half an hour back to the car. More gliders appeared from the nearby aerodrome. The Aeroplane pilot was having a busy day today.

Image
Gliders 4 by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr

We reached the stream that Rick got wet in on the way up, but this time he managed to cross it no bother. The views in this region are amazing.

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We passed by the large nest once more, but couldn't see any signs of life and after 7 hours arrived back at our baking hot car. The drive to Nethy Bridge was an interesting one. We saw horse riders, cross country roller bladers, skate boarders, cyclists and a bloke on a pogo stick. Ah, Aviemore...

A quick stop in Nethy Bridge for an ice-cream and we set off back to the east coast very satisfied with what we had just achieved. We were happy that we chose a challenging Munro for our second one after the easy Bynack More with its paths all the way. Thank goodness there is no cure for this Munro bagging bug. We only wish we had started climbing Munro's a couple of years earlier.
Last edited by RicKamila on Sun Jul 28, 2013 9:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RicKamila
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Re: Sgor Gaoith

Postby soapy27 » Sun Jul 28, 2013 12:20 pm

Great set of photos there Rick , :clap: great hill this liked it so much I've done it twice :)
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Re: Sgor Gaoith

Postby RicKamila » Sun Jul 28, 2013 12:21 pm

soapy27 wrote:Great set of photos there Rick , :clap: great hill this liked it so much I've done it twice :)


Did you just climb straight up or do you know if the faint path that goes south halfway up the slope take you around to the ridge?
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Re: Sgor Gaoith

Postby rockhopper » Sun Jul 28, 2013 12:26 pm

Glen Feshie and Loch Einich - two of my favourites and you've captured them so well :thumbup: - that's cheered me up says he looking out at the rain :roll: - cheers :)
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Re: Sgor Gaoith

Postby wilkiemurray » Sun Jul 28, 2013 1:25 pm

Well done

Great report and photos - particularly like the ones of the gliders - think the camel looks like a swan though :lol:
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Re: Sgor Gaoith

Postby RicKamila » Sun Jul 28, 2013 1:47 pm

wilkiemurray wrote:Well done

Great report and photos - particularly like the ones of the gliders - think the camel looks like a swan though :lol:


I also thought of a swan afterwards, but Camel was the first thing I said at the time.

I should clarify too that I meant a One Humped Camel. See photo exhibit below.... :lol:

one-hump-camel-231169.jpg

Image
Camel Cloud by CullenEllermanPhotography, on Flickr
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Re: Sgor Gaoith

Postby morag1 » Mon Jul 29, 2013 7:53 am

Two Munros in one week, well done Rick and Kamila :clap:

Another lovely set of photos, looking forward to the next Munro report already :D
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Re: Sgor Gaoith

Postby Stretch » Mon Jul 29, 2013 4:46 pm

Excellent report with some stunning pics. Glad you two finally got the munro bug. Equally glad that you're keeping up one of my traditions while I lived in Scotland - the pre or post-munro McDonalds visit! :lol:
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Re: Sgor Gaoith

Postby RicKamila » Mon Jul 29, 2013 8:52 pm

Stretch wrote:Excellent report with some stunning pics. Glad you two finally got the munro bug. Equally glad that you're keeping up one of my traditions while I lived in Scotland - the pre or post-munro McDonalds visit! :lol:


As Kamila says, "we'll walk it off anyway" :lol:

morag1 wrote:Two Munros in one week, well done Rick and Kamila :clap:

Another lovely set of photos, looking forward to the next Munro report already :D


Very happy with ourselves. Having a week off due to family visiting, but then back on it the following week (hopefully)
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