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Loch Quoich circuit

Loch Quoich circuit


Postby gman » Mon Oct 14, 2013 11:17 am

Munros included on this walk: Gairich, Garbh Chioch Mhor, Sgurr Mor (Loch Quoich), Sgurr na Ciche, Sgurr nan Coireachan (Glen Dessary)

Corbetts included on this walk: Sgurr an Fhuarain

Date walked: 12/10/2013

Time taken: 19 hours

Distance: 56 km

Ascent: 3576m

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Got this idea from Steve Fallon's website, means you don't have to drive the Loch Arkaig road which I heard was endless single track - met a guy on the walk who said it was a classic drive though. First time with the tent & it was tough going with a heavy pack, but this is what we do for fun at the weekends - who needs the pub? :lol:

Drove to the other end of the loch & dumped the bike for the return on the road, then back to the dam & headed off.
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Boggy path leads down to plantation.
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Then up to Gairich.
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Back to the dam.
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Cuillin, where someone was getting ready to get the traverse record.
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The Ben, great views today but not so great on Sunday.
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Next, the Corbett Sgurr an Fhuarain. This was the biggest descent/reascent of the day so would be glad to get it over.
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Route was straight over the pathless boggy ground then turn left to get up onto the left ridge aboult halfway. This was tough, steep grass & couldn't find the faint stalker's path. Better alternative might be to follow the path north west then get on the right shoulder on a south west path.
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Phew, at the top & the rest of the route to Sgurr na Ciche with easier drops between the hills :D .
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Gairich:
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Nice grassy walk round to Sgurr Mor.
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From the top, Sgurr Beag next and Sgurr na Ciche looking pointy in the distance.
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Over to Knoydart.
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Descended, then filled bottles with water at a burn before going up Sgurr Beag. Felt good to get the pack off for a while :D. Went over Sgurr Beag, then took the pack off on the other side to get a drink & noticed the tent was missing :shock: . Figured it must have happened when I took the pack off to get water, so left the pack & went back over Sgurr Beag to the burn... but no tent. Back again, looking everywhere for tent but no joy, so planned to descend on the path before An Eag and return to car by Glen Kingie. Er...when I got back to the path I noticed the tent was a couple of yards from it - it had slipped out when I took it off d'oh :lol:.

By this time the sun was going down so I pitched at the bealach before An Eag - nice views to distract from walker stupidity :D .
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Woke up in clag the next morning, route gets rockier now & fence posts to follow.
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No views from Sgurr nan Coireachan.
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Down to the bealach with Garbh Chioch Beag, bit scramblier now.
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Cloud cleared for a few seconds - Garbh Chioch Beag, path at the drystane wall leading up from the left.
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Wall continues to Garbh Chioch Mhor.
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Back in the clag, slower going now as the ground is rougher and wind getting up. Met another walker who had camped after Sgurr na Ciche, he couldn't get much sleep as the wind was fierce here during the night. Still blowy today.

Down to the bealach & up to Sgurr na Ciche.
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High wind at the top, got half a view during a break in the cloud.
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Then the pathless descent of Sgurr na Ciche, backtracked a bit & turned left but ended up in a boulder field so should probably have backtracked further. Another wall further down & it's guess the route through the crags time.
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Over a rise, then down to a bealach where a stream leads down to the right.
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Still rocky down the sides of the stream.
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Faint boggy stalkers path at the bottom turns into a nice landrover track that leads round to a couple of dams at Loch Quoich. Ben Aden from the dam:
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Took a bit longer than expected to get here & was starting to calculate whether I'd get back before the A82 closes at 10pm. Good progress made on the landy track but it disappears into the loch after a few kms, then it's a boggy stalkers path. Eventually joined another landrover track & could see where I'd parked the bike from here, this track also disappears into the loch but there are a few boggy paths leading round.
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Found an old dodgy-looking bridge across the Caolie Water but the stepping stones next to it were a safer bet. Back on the road, picked up the bike & headed back to the dam - seemed to be mainly uphill going this was, probably because the legs had had enough for the day :lol: .
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Re: Loch Quoich circuit

Postby Johnny Corbett » Mon Oct 14, 2013 9:07 pm

Good stuff, thats a fine looking round. You must have been relieved to have found the tent. :lol:
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Re: Loch Quoich circuit

Postby Collaciotach » Mon Oct 14, 2013 9:40 pm

stunning photos :D
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Re: Loch Quoich circuit

Postby gman » Tue Oct 15, 2013 9:32 am

Johnny Corbett wrote:Good stuff, thats a fine looking round. You must have been relieved to have found the tent. :lol:


I've lost gloves and a GPS before but this really raises the bar :lol: .

Collaciotach wrote:stunning photos :D


Cheers, it's a great looking part of the country.
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Re: Loch Quoich circuit

Postby Tomsie » Tue Oct 15, 2013 11:27 am

Massive walk glad you found your tent, not a bad weekend to pick.
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Re: Loch Quoich circuit

Postby jonny616 » Tue Oct 15, 2013 7:26 pm

Was on the three from Arkaig on Saturday. Stunning. Met the chap who camped near the bealach on our way out. The road is indeed a very long road.
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Re: Loch Quoich circuit

Postby gman » Tue Oct 15, 2013 10:24 pm

jonny616 wrote:Was on the three from Arkaig on Saturday. Stunning. Met the chap who camped near the bealach on our way out. The road is indeed a very long road.


We had a good old moan about the extra weight we were carrying :D . You definitely had the best weather for those 3 on the Saturday, great hills in any case.
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Re: Loch Quoich circuit

Postby PeteR » Thu Oct 17, 2013 10:22 pm

An enjoyable read and some great photos :clap: :D

Some really great hills :D
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Re: Loch Quoich circuit

Postby canofirnbru » Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:48 pm

Great report and nice pics.
I think I'll 'borrow' this route for when I get round to doing these hills. :D
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Re: Loch Quoich circuit

Postby Huff_n_Puff » Fri Oct 18, 2013 6:11 pm

Great report and pics - its a long time since I was last in this area - perhaps this will ginger me up a bit :lol: :lol:

I really like the route too ... perhaps, next year...
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Re: Loch Quoich circuit

Postby gman » Sat Oct 19, 2013 10:53 am

There's a description of the route on Steve Fallon's website:
http://www.stevenfallon.co.uk/ciche.html

Trickiest bit is probably coming down from Sgurr na Ciche, no path and crags to avoid. And remember to bring a bike for the last stretch on the road :D .
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Re: Loch Quoich circuit

Postby Sarah86 » Sat Oct 19, 2013 12:47 pm

Absolutely stunning set of photos.
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Re: Loch Quoich circuit

Postby Silverhill » Sat Oct 19, 2013 9:51 pm

:clap: That is some circuit! :clap: It's not the easiest terrain and to walk it with a full pack! I'm very tempted to try this route though when I get to these hills, thanks for posting! :D
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