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Schiehallion

Schiehallion


Postby BoyVertiginous » Tue Aug 13, 2013 2:49 pm

Route description: Schiehallion

Munros included on this walk: Schiehallion

Date walked: 10/08/2013

Time taken: 3 hours

Distance: 10 km

Ascent: 750m

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In the area for the weekend, camping with friends, it seemed right to contemplate either Schiehallion or Ben Vrackie. I'd decided that if the wives and kids didn't fancy either as a daytime walk, I'd head off early on Saturday morning, so as not to impinge on family/friends time...these weekends just fly in...and also avoid the crowds.

So, outlining my plans while sat around the camp fire, women and children having ruled themselves out, one of my mates was a definitely up for it and there was a hint of interest from another. I moved the car farther up the campsite so as to minimise any disturbance in the morning and we agreed to assemble for 4.30am.

Up at 4am, I could hear movement elsewhere around our pitch and got kitted-up and out of the tent. It's 4.15 now and still dark but, the three of us are up and ready to go however, could not find the car keys! Searched rucksacks, jackets, tent, the car, woke the kids and my missus (that went down well) only to remember I'd put them in my map wallet so they'd be easy to put my hand on in the morning... :oops:

So, eventually on the road at 4.45am, heading West along the North shore of Loch Tummel before turning off at Tummel Bridge to head South before hanging a right at Loch Kinardochy and on to Braes of Foss.

Pulled into the car park shortly after 5.15am, pausing only to get a ticket for the car, and then the three of us headed on to the hill. The sun was yet to rise but, it was light now, looking promising and Schiehallion had only a light cloud cap on.

*Apologies for the poor quality photos (they are mine from my phone), credit for any good ones included here goes to my mate (Cheers, Al).

Image
Early morning view from the path to the East ridge over Loch Tummel

So, no fancy approaches here, just following the "new" path up to the East ridge. The sun was rising and views South and East weren't too bad so we had high hopes of a clear summit and maybe even a cloud inversion however, not long after the cairn that marks the point where the old path reached the ridge, the clag came in and there would be no more views until we returned to this point on the way back down.

The sun is rising as the clag begins to descend
Image

I was struck by a sense of acute responsibility, partly as it had been my idea and partly as I was the most experienced walker (which felt odd as none of us are that experienced on the hill). Visibility was poor but I'd read up on the walk along the ridge, we didn't get too strung out and kept picking out landmarks along the way.

The dampness made for some tricky going across the boulders along the ridge. One of my mates slipped and fell on the way up, giving himself a nasty one on the shin. He soldiered on though and we eventually reached the summit sometime before 7am. Pretty miserable up there by now, no views at all and we headed off as soon as the summit pic formalities were completed.
Image

Soon after leaving the summit, my other mate slipped and fell, using his extensive mountain biking fall experience to evade injury.

Image
It wasn't long before we were dropping down off the summit ridge again and glad to be emerging from the clag, where we paused briefly for a snack and drink before following the path back down. It was definitely trying to brighten up and it did look like those going up later in the day would be rewarded with views to the North and West (see howzat's report of the same hill, later the same day).

Image

We exchanged pleasantries with two walkers who were just setting off from the car park as we arrived back at approximately 8.20am.

Looking good for anyone heading up now...
Image

Drove back via Kinloch Rannoch and watched a red squirrel at play in the woods on the South side. 8)

We were back on our campsite before 9am, in time to get the breakfast on for everyone as they were only just surfacing. It was an excellent day of weather that followed with swimming, fishing and kayaking on the loch. One or two beverages were taken by the camp fire on the lochside in the evening to top off a grand day.
Image
Last edited by BoyVertiginous on Tue Aug 13, 2013 3:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby The Rodmiester » Tue Aug 13, 2013 3:07 pm

Great stuff! like the lost keys sinario :lol: bet you were in the good books :lol: , pity about the clag, you deserved better. How considerate of you to move the car ready for the early off :D Were you on the breakfast making then? :lol:
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby BoyVertiginous » Tue Aug 13, 2013 3:13 pm

The Rodmiester wrote:Great stuff! like the lost keys sinario :lol: bet you were in the good books :lol: , pity about the clag, you deserved better. How considerate of you to move the car ready for the early off :D Were you on the breakfast making then? :lol:

Thanks, Rodmeister, yes I was. It was part of the make-weight in the deal but, the key-gate scandal clinched it. I don't think they really believed we'd be back by 9am either (though, to be fair, this belief was probably fuelled by past estimates being out by up to two hours).
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby morag1 » Tue Aug 13, 2013 4:59 pm

Sounds like a great holiday BoyV, wish my husband was as considerate as you when it comes to not disturbing folk :(

Shame about the lack of views but at least you managed to reach the summit. I turned back at the Boulder field because I hated it and was frightened I would break my ankle. It's a lovely mountain though and the whole area is very special. Love your photo of the Queens View 8)
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby Fife Flyer » Tue Aug 13, 2013 8:04 pm

BoyVertiginous wrote:Pulled into the car park shortly after 5.15am, pausing only to get a ticket for the car, and then the three of us headed on to the hill. The sun was yet to rise but, it was light now, looking promising and Schiehallion had only a light cloud cap on.


Love it, getting a ticket for the car at that time :lol: :lol: Often wonder if anyone actually checks the cars in the car parks, especially as most of them are so remote :o
By the way, great report, as said earlier you deserved better weather :(
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby rockhopper » Tue Aug 13, 2013 8:22 pm

Good going to be back for 9am - breakfast must have been beckoning.
Pity about the clag and clearing up later - seems to happen all too often to us :roll:
Re the keys - glad I'm not the only one who puts things where I won't lose them then promptly forget where I put them :crazy: - cheers :)
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby BoyVertiginous » Wed Aug 14, 2013 9:09 am

morag1 wrote:Sounds like a great holiday BoyV, wish my husband was as considerate as you when it comes to not disturbing folk :(

Shame about the lack of views but at least you managed to reach the summit. I turned back at the Boulder field because I hated it and was frightened I would break my ankle. It's a lovely mountain though and the whole area is very special. Love your photo of the Queens View 8)

Thanks, Morag. One of the pluses of the site at Ardgualich is that they allow you to have your car on the pitch with you (lots of places do this but, many do not) however, I know I'd be a bit grumpy if someone sparked up their engine at some ridiculously early hour.
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby BoyVertiginous » Wed Aug 14, 2013 9:15 am

Fife Flyer wrote:
BoyVertiginous wrote:Pulled into the car park shortly after 5.15am, pausing only to get a ticket for the car, and then the three of us headed on to the hill. The sun was yet to rise but, it was light now, looking promising and Schiehallion had only a light cloud cap on.


Love it, getting a ticket for the car at that time :lol: :lol: Often wonder if anyone actually checks the cars in the car parks, especially as most of them are so remote :o
By the way, great report, as said earlier you deserved better weather :(

You've got me thinking now...I just thought I was contributing to a good cause?! Now I think about it, JMT own and maintain the track and the car park is provided by the Forestry Commission, is that right. Still, £2 is a small price to pay for having your car in off the road and if it helps the FC maintain the car park then that's fine by me.

On the other hand, when I called into Queen's View for a quick look the next day I did not pay... :arrow:
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby BoyVertiginous » Wed Aug 14, 2013 9:23 am

rockhopper wrote:Good going to be back for 9am - breakfast must have been beckoning.
Pity about the clag and clearing up later - seems to happen all too often to us :roll:
Re the keys - glad I'm not the only one who puts things where I won't lose them then promptly forget where I put them :crazy: - cheers :)

That's only half the story, rockhopper!

Setting off late afternoon Friday, I was picking the other half up on the way so, I was charged with loading the car. On route to Pitlochry I remembered I'd left the gas bottle behind and once at the site, my good lady asked me where the plastic container with the meats for dinner and breakfast were...what container :wtf:

That's what friends are for though, eh?!

I did however remember the essentials like Kayaks, fishing tackle, etc. :lol:
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby MusicalHiker » Wed Aug 14, 2013 10:33 am

I climbed this one when there was deep snow at the top which made the boulders much easier! It was a stunning clear day too. Don't know if I fancy crawling out of a tent at that time of day though!
I must admit I didn't put a ticket on the car, because the website said there were toilets, which turned out to be non existent! Fine for me, not so good for my other half, who has an ileostomy bag, waiting in the car!
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby BoyVertiginous » Wed Aug 14, 2013 12:26 pm

MusicalHiker wrote:I climbed this one when there was deep snow at the top which made the boulders much easier! It was a stunning clear day too. Don't know if I fancy crawling out of a tent at that time of day though!
I must admit I didn't put a ticket on the car, because the website said there were toilets, which turned out to be non existent! Fine for me, not so good for my other half, who has an ileostomy bag, waiting in the car!

Fair point, probably easier in the snow.

I can see how that'd be an issue. There appeared to be some works in progress at the car park, not sure if it was installation of toilets or not though.
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby Sunny Speyside » Wed Aug 14, 2013 1:08 pm

Always a soft spot for Schiehallion - it was my first Munro, capped in snow with clear skies, a magic day. What a pity the clag didn't clear 'til after you were down. I applaud your honesty in paying the parking charge, hopefully some it goes to JMT for the upkeep of the path :clap: :clap: :clap:
Cheers
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby BoyVertiginous » Wed Aug 14, 2013 4:54 pm

Sunny Speyside wrote:Always a soft spot for Schiehallion - it was my first Munro, capped in snow with clear skies, a magic day. What a pity the clag didn't clear 'til after you were down. I applaud your honesty in paying the parking charge, hopefully some it goes to JMT for the upkeep of the path :clap: :clap: :clap:
Cheers

Iconic hill, particularly galling to be able to see the clear summit from the campsite for the remainder of the day and that day and the next!

Shall have to return on a clear, crisp, winter's morn to experience it again, Sunny Speyside.
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby Avocetboy » Thu Aug 15, 2013 9:27 am

Nice Report BV. You cannot beat a good early start. Sounds like an excellent spot to camp as well.
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Re: Schiehallion

Postby BoyVertiginous » Thu Aug 15, 2013 1:43 pm

Avocetboy wrote:Nice Report BV. You cannot beat a good early start. Sounds like an excellent spot to camp as well.

Cheers A-boy, would recommend the site and shall definitely return there in the future.
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