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A Grand day out whatever the weather.

A Grand day out whatever the weather.


Postby martin.h » Fri Sep 06, 2013 12:30 am

Route description: South Glen Shiel Ridge: 7 Munros

Munros included on this walk: Aonach Air Chrith, Creag a'Mhaim, Creag nan Damh, Druim Shionnach, Maol chinn-dearg, Sgurr an Doire Leathain, Sgurr an Lochain

Date walked: 31/07/2013

Time taken: 10.25 hours

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This was the walk we had been looking forward to for quite a while, I first came across this walk on the Walkhighlands forum and dedicated a lot of time researching the route and reading reports, after taking as much info on board as possible I decided that this was probably going to be the best walk of the year so far and when the forecasters were predicting the best weather of the whole week on the 31st July I thought all had come together and we were going to be blessed with wall to wall sunshine and clear conditions.
When we surfaced that Wednesday morning to low, grey clouds on Skye I was a wee bit apprehensive, mmmmm well, It was 50 miles up the glen from Tarskavaig to the start of the walk so, no need to worry, that's half a world away, and the forecasters are never wrong!!!!!!.
Our son Richard dropped us off in the layby at the start of the private road by the Cluanie, we had a quick look around and saw that things were not too bad in "them thare hills"
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Cloudy but nice

This wasn't too bad so we set off towards the start of the walk hoping that it was still only 8:35 am, plenty of time for improvement. It was becoming brighter as we walked, and, just to convince us a bit more, the R.A.F. treated us to a low level fly past, that was spectacular, loud, but spectacular, you could nearly touch the jet, those pilots must get a real buzz doing that, I wonder if they get much time for a look at the mountains from up there?
About 1.1/4 hrs after starting we arrived at the well built bridge and found the start of the stalkers path, had a short break then started going uphill, this was a nice steady walk all the way to the first Munro Creag a' Mhaim,
there was some thin cloud over the summit but nothing to bother us and it did look like it was lifting, so the count down began.
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First of the day and still smiling

After 2:1/2 hrs from the Cluanie we were on our way to Munro no:2. The clouds had lifted enough to see the way forward and I was now beginning to think we may just get the ideal conditions. Half an hour later we were on Druim Shionnach.
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No:2

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Looking back and turning into a nice day

We could see the next summit, well most of it, and were soon striding out along the very pleasant and airy ridge.
Across the glen we could see Spidean Mialach with it's cloudy hat on, one for next year maybe.
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When we arrived on Aonach Air Chrith we had nice views across to the Brothers and down to the Cluanie
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No:3

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And over Glen Quoich
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Looking ahead to No: 4 Maol Chinn-Dearg the clouds were still being good
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No:4

We decided to have our lunch on maol Chinn-Dearg and during the time spent on no;4 the clouds came right down and with them, a distinct drop in temperature, then the drizzle started, ahh well at least we're well on the way and the path is clear enough. So onto no:5 Sgurr an Doire Leathain.
By now it was raining more often than not and when we strolled over to the cairn on Sgurr an Doire Leathain we couldn't see a thing.
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We didn't stay long on no:5 and were soon on the way to No:6, this section was entertaining in parts, I slipped and nearly went downhill quickly, I wasn't concentrating because I kept getting the briefest of views of Loch Quoich and knackeration was setting in, but Sgurr an Lochain was very near now so with that and plenty of jelly babies the summit was soon under our boots.
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No;6

Just No 7 to go, I had read previous reports about the view across to Creag nam Damh and how it can be a bit deflating, good job we couldn't see it, so, with heads down, we set off, did the traverse around sgurr beag and then the plod up to No:7 although we were wet and a bit fed up, the summit was soon ours, I checked the G.P.S. just to make sure we were there, I gave Denise a soggy kiss and punched the air, we had done it, on our first attempt as well, brilliant.
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No:7

And now for the descent, when we got to the 8m scrambly bit it looked quite daunting in the mist, I thought we'd gone wrong, but remembered that some of the WH reports mentioned this and realised we were still o.k. After a wee while we found the cairn marking the start of the path down hill. This is loose and bouldery, not pleasant, very tiring after such a long walk, but we were eventually down after about 1:3/4 hrs after leaving Creag nam Damh, about 15 mins from the road we encountered a small group of cows with a massive bull standing guard over them whilst straddling the path with that "keep coming if you dare" look on his face, so we opted for the not so easy detour, I thought I'd let him off!!!!!!!!!!!
We both really enjoyed our day out, I'd planned and looked forward to this for a few months, We'd managed it, what a grand day, soggy but happy.
We've still 10 Munro's in Glen Shiel to do, we hope to do them next Spring Bank, Can't wait.
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martin.h
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Location: Halifax, West Yorkshire

Re: A Grand day out whatever the weather.

Postby mrssanta » Sat Sep 07, 2013 11:09 pm

well done you, and still smiling at the end!
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mrssanta
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Re: A Grand day out whatever the weather.

Postby GillC » Sun Sep 08, 2013 8:12 am

Great,,well done,,think I'll plan this one for next spring,,,fab.
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GillC
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Re: A Grand day out whatever the weather.

Postby Fife Flyer » Sun Sep 08, 2013 8:38 am

Well done to both of you, sounds like you had slightly better weather than us - but it really is a cracking day out :clap: :clap:

Gill I'll maybe do it again (next year) if you can pick a nice day weather wise, it would be better if you could see where you are going & where you've been :lol:
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Fife Flyer
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Re: A Grand day out whatever the weather.

Postby GillC » Sun Sep 08, 2013 9:53 am

fab,,,does anyone have any thoughts on preference of east to west or trying it west to east? 'spose its a 2 car trick either way.,
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GillC
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Re: A Grand day out whatever the weather.

Postby lomondwalkers » Sun Sep 08, 2013 9:55 am

Great report! Can't wait to do this one, was hoping to do it this year, but now looking like it will have to wait. Looks like it will be worth the wait 8)
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lomondwalkers
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Re: A Grand day out whatever the weather.

Postby martin.h » Sun Sep 08, 2013 7:38 pm

Thank you all for your replies, it's quite a long and hard day out, but once you've finished, the sense of achievement is very real. GillC , I think that whichever way you decide to tackle this, you'll have a good day, I suppose doing it from west-east the descent from Creag a' Mhaim won't be quite as bad for tired legs, and there's always a pub at the end.
Good luck and enjoy.
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martin.h
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 504
Munros:206   Corbetts:17
Grahams:10   Donalds:7
Sub 2000:2   Hewitts:146
Wainwrights:214   Islands:19
Joined: Jul 31, 2011
Location: Halifax, West Yorkshire

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