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Aonach Eagach - 28/08/13 (50 Shades of "Dismay")
by MG1976 » Fri Aug 30, 2013 2:16 pm
Route description: Aonach Eagach
Munros included on this walk: Meall Dearg (Aonach Eagach), Sgorr nam Fiannaidh (Aonach Eagach)
Date walked: 28/08/2013
Time taken: 9.5 hours
Distance: 9.43 km
Ascent: 1182m11 people think this report is great. Register or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
Well, this is it how it happened for me....
On the 23rd May (2013), one innocent enough question (Aonach Eagach in 2013 anyone??) started a chain reaction. Another thread followed (Aonach Eagach - 28th August 2013), resulting in 7 people (of varying degrees of daftness) arriving at a small (unspectacular) layby, in Glencoe.
We set off at 0910, following the obvious path up the hillside.
The initial climb is straighforward; just keep heading up.
We did, stopping to enjoy the views up, down and across the glen.
Just as we were hitting the cloud base, we reached the first decision point of the day; the direct path up to Am Bodach (to the left), or the path up to the corrie head (to the right)?
After much discussion of who's guide book said what, and what we all thought (based on our varying degrees of map "holding" & "turning" skills, I asked everyone for a vote on which direction we should take.
From the outset we had agreed that we were walking as a group and would be staying as a group.
The resulting vote was as follows...
After a bit of sensibility, and a spontaneous recital from Ralph Storer's "Ultimate Guide to the Munros" book, declaring the corrie path to be "HORRENDOUSLY" stony (I can't remember who by), we opted for the direct path to the left.
I don't really remember what promted what happened next; I don't know if it was thoughts that we might be gambling with our lives, or if it was thoughts of wishing he was back at home on his sofa, watcing repeats of early 90's family game shows but, (for some reason know only to himself) one of the group turned into Bruce Forsyth as we reached the top of Am Bodach.
Okay, so we're 2 hours in....
The cloud is low, but the weather appears to be holding.
So far, the mood is good; we're all getting along well, the pace is steady, the banter is good.
If I was to sum up the day so far, in a musical fashion, the song i'd go for would be
The Banana Splits TV show theme tune - "Tra La La, La La La La"
Then, at 1115, we all stood on top of Am Bodach.
At this point, the "Tra La La'ing" was quickly replaced by the theme to "The Good, The Bad & the Ugly."
We had all read similar reports regarding the climb down from Am Bodach onto the ridge.
Some say it's the toughest part (maybe psychologically), others say that if you can't hold your nerve here then it's time to turn around and head home.
We all had a good look, we all voiced how we were feeling (some voices more high pitched than others) but we agreed (eventually) that we were doing this. It was all or nothing deal, we weren't splitting up.
Peter took the lead, having declared himself the most experienced of the group. ( )
It's not your typical left foot, right foot plod; more a "Where the hell do I put my hand, foot, knee, bum, anything, now" sort of deal.
Eventually we were all down and, looking back up, one thing was clear...
We had better make it all the way across, because none of us fancied climbing back up this.
The cloud wasn't too bad, to be fair. I'm sure we missed out on some wonderful views, but I wouldn't say we felt cheated. The ridge itself, needs no support acts....
And so, some more shades of...
We reached the summit of Meall Dearg at 1215, all happy to rest and enjoyed our lunch.
John, having the "big" camera, took the summit group picture, and has kindly shared it with me.
We stayed at the summit of our newly aquired Blue Balloons for about half an hour.
We knew that what lay ahead was going to be tougher that what we had already been through, but the initial leg shakes were now a little less obvious than they were, after the climb down from Am Bodach.
I'm not gonna write much more, the ridge between the two Munros took up all our concentration, and taking notes never really happened. Plenty more pictures, but keeping my hand steady enough to actually form words with pen and paper wasn't that important anymore; getting across the ridge was.
So, I hope the picture here give a "flavour" of our trip.
That's all they will do; you really need to "walk the walk" on this one.
We did make it safely across.
Straight after lunch, we were back to climbing again; anyone ever worked as a chimney sweep?
I'll post the remaining "25 Shades" as a reply to this post.
Official times are as follows:
Walk time from layby to Am Bodach top: 2 Hours
Walk time from Am Bodach to Meall Dearg summit: 1 Hour
Meall Dearg summit rest time: 30 Minutes
Walk time from Meall Dearg summit to Sgorr Nam Fiannaidh: 3 Hours
Sgorr Nam Fiannaidh summit rest time: 10 Minutes
Walk time from Sgorr Nam Fiannaidh summit to Red Squirrell Camp Site: 2 Hour - 50 Minutes
Total walking time: 8 Hours - 50 Minutes
Total rest time: 40 Minutes
Total Trip Time : 9 Hours - 30 Minutes.
I would just like to thank those who attended for a fantastic day out.
I'd happily "walk" with any of you again some time, but next time (Gill), when Peter asks for the grid refrence for the Cairngorms, could you try and get it right....
by Fife Flyer » Fri Aug 30, 2013 2:38 pm
Brought a smile & a grimace to my face at the same time, it really was that steep
From what I remember only one of us had shades & she will remain nameless, just think of the extra weight
by MG1976 » Fri Aug 30, 2013 4:47 pm
- Shade 26.
Looking at this, you forget about the ridge. Who am I kidding...
- Shade 27.
A familiar outlook.
- Shade 28.
Another brief break in the clouds.
- Shade 29.
I'm quite proud of this from my lowly point & shoot.
- Shade 30.
- Shade 31.
Is that Jimmy looking for an alternative escape route?
- Shade 32.
Taking a break; If I was posing, I wouldn't have been holding on.
- Shade 33.
Up this / down this, I can't remember.
- Shade 34.
It's a long way back.
- Shade 35.
To all my friends & family, that's Glencoe you can('t) see, behind me.
- Shade 36.
"Climb Every Mountain"
- Shade 37.
The ridgeline, already completed.
- Shade 38.
Yazz - "The only way is up"
- Shade 39.
Jimmy, did you not start off with a full head of hair?
- Shade 40.
Anyone for a pinnacle?
- Shade 41.
- Shade 42.
Lost a few of them, again.
- Shade 43.
- Shade 44.
Those jokers playing Hide & Seek, I wonder where they might be.
- Shade 45.
Group Summit Shot - Sgorr Nam Fiannaidh.
- Shade 46.
The Pap of Glencoe.
- Shade 47.
A long look back up the glen.
- Shade 48.
That cloud just never lifted.
- Shade 49.
Just the long slog down to go.
- Shade 50.
A fine view to end a fine day.
To Martin, Gill, John, Jimmy, Peter & Harry,
Thanks for an amazing day.
These were 2 well earned blue balloons.
by The Rodmiester » Fri Aug 30, 2013 5:18 pm
by tomyboy73 » Fri Aug 30, 2013 5:57 pm
by Backpacker » Fri Aug 30, 2013 6:09 pm
This is definitely on next years to do list
by jupe1407 » Fri Aug 30, 2013 7:02 pm
by rockhopper » Fri Aug 30, 2013 7:31 pm
by GillC » Fri Aug 30, 2013 7:54 pm
I stayed on til Friday, but the amount of rain that fell in the past 24 hrs in Glencoe is STUPID. most of its in my tent. Im now home, pizza, wine and a warm cosy bed.
by GillC » Fri Aug 30, 2013 7:58 pm
by Munchie » Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:28 pm
MG1976 some great photos there and you have really captured an atmospheric Yin-Yang moment in Glencoe (photo Shade 08).
Cracking photos and a job well done folks .
- Posts: 33
- Joined: Jul 21, 2013
by Silverhill » Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:48 pm
Thanks MG1976 for the detailed pictures of the route. It looks like good fun (am I really saying this? ). I think I'm warming towards the idea of doing this....
by hutchy1 » Fri Aug 30, 2013 11:34 pm
GillC wrote:and hey,,,whats this 9.5hrs thing? we took 8hrs 40, not including the 1mile walk back to the cars lol Don't want Cameron thinking we're a TOTAL bunch of lightweights lol
now im even more gutted I missed out glad you all had a great day hope you got my message in time
by Fife Flyer » Sat Aug 31, 2013 3:41 pm
by pollyh33 » Sat Aug 31, 2013 8:49 pm
If there is one walk that always guarantees a good read its the A/E traverse!
No matter how many hills you have climbed this is the one you have etched on your memory for forever
Totally different conditions from what I had but same look of relief on all the faces at the end
Well done guys and gal