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One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr


Postby PeteR » Thu Oct 24, 2013 12:25 am

Route description: Sgurr Mor and Sgurr an Fhuarain, Loch Arkaig

Corbetts included on this walk: Sgurr an Fhuarain

Date walked: 20/10/2013

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A few weeks back found me driving the rollercoaster route beside Loch Arkaig in pursuit of the Munro Sgurr Mor and the Corbetts either side of Sgurr an Fhuarain and Sgurr Cos na Breachd-laoidh. A lack of energy and enthusiasm resulted in an ultimately enjoyable substitute walk of the two nearby Corbetts of Fraoch Bheinn and Sgurr Mhurlagain.

Fast forward and I was again enjoying rollercoaster route beside Loch Arkaig in pursuit of the Munro Sgurr Mor and the Corbetts either side of Sgurr an Fhuarain and Sgurr Cos na Breachd-laoidh. Met three lively women at the start, who were off to walk the Glendessarry three :D
P1020173.JPG
Start of the day at the parking area at Strathan

During the intervening period there had been a fair dollop of rain, so the already extremely boggy path I was going to have to navigate was no doubt going to be beyond boggy :shock:

And oh yes, it was well beyond boggy :shock: :shock: The track up to the Feith a’Bhrolaich and then over to the Kinbreak bothy and over the River Kingie was perhaps the most boggy ground I have ever walked on :shock: Until the walk back via the standard “in and out” route over the Feith a’Chicheanais that is :lol:

Thankfully my energy and enthusiasm levels were up at the start of the walk, enjoying the views back to Streap and the Glenfinnan Munros, resplendent with a partial inversion 8)
P1020189.JPG
Partial cloud inversion.....looked better than the photo suggests

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Toward Streap and Co.......note the delightful boggy track

Despite the rain earlier in the week the weather was looking pretty good, with good breaks in the cloud and even a bit of heat on my back too :D
P1020195.JPG
And the route ahead

Once on the saddle Gairich came into view, looking pretty special :D
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As was the “back” of Fraoch Bheinn :D
P1020212.JPG

While the views might have remained, energy was easily sapped in the atrocious bog and slop that I was walking in :shock: Walking either side of the poor excuse for a track was pointless too, as it was just as boggy, and with added lumpy ground to navigate :( And the roaring of the stags was eerie too and at times a tad unnerving :shock: Especially as at one point the path seemed to veer off toward the loudest of the roars :shock:

So, it was slightly slower progress than perhaps I’d hoped as I eventually arrived at the bothy. I’d thought of stopping here, but instead just pressed on. The crossing of the Kingie occurred without incident, but then the ground immediately following the river crossing was dire :shock: Lumpy, boggy and a potential ankle breaker at every step. This was then replaced by more glorious boggy ground, which seemed to take an age to get through. As well as the bog there was plenty of water too. Too big to be puddles, but perhaps a bit small to be lochans.
P1020221.JPG
Lonely Glen Kingie

Eventually I arrived at the stalkers track that follows the lower reaches of the Sgurr Mor Sgurr an Fhuarain massif before swinging round the eastern ridge of Sgurr and Fhuarain and over toward Loch Quoich. This was the firmest track I had to walk on all day, but it was short lived as it made easy progress to the foot of Sgurr an Fhuarain’s east ridge.
P1020229.JPG
Glen Kingie again, as I ascend Sgurr an Fhuarain

At the point I planned to hit the ridge I took the chance for a quick rest and text to report in to MrsR :D Then it was what turned into a slow slog up the ridge :( From the base it looked not too bad, but I found it a bit more undulating than and confusing than I had expected. So, slower progress than I’d hoped for.
P1020237.JPG
View up the ridge

Still, there were great views back to Gairich and across Loch Quoich and the south Glen Shiel ridge :D
P1020241.JPG
Quoich

P1020242.JPG
South Glen Shiel ridge excerpt

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River Kingie

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Higher up the ridge

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Gairich

Just a shame the clag came in as I hit the summit :crazy:
P1020258.JPG
Extensive summit views

By the time I made the summit of the Corbett my sense was that I was behind schedule and concerned about getting off the hill and over what I didn’t know at the time, but expected all the same to be, a boggy return track before losing the light. So immediately plans for Sgurr Mor were being shelved in my head.

Then, as I set off down the easy descent from Sgurr an Fhuarain the clag lifted and the view of the ridge up Sgurr Mor looked more than tempting :D
P1020268.JPG
Sgurr Mor looking inviting

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Still looking inviting

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Sgurr an Fhuarain

Arriving at the saddle I’ll admit I was very tempted, but after a few moments thought I decided to stick to my original decision. Can’t tell you how annoyed and frustrated I was feeling by the way the day was going, but with shorter days I didn’t fancy risking a boggy return in failing light. I’ve come to the conclusion these Glen Kingie hills have the Hoodoo on me :lol:

The return was a slow, steep descent off the side of the hill, followed by more bog and slop over the Kingie and up onto Feith a’Chicheanais. Clocked one of the locals giving me the stare from a distance :lol:
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Fraoch Bheinn

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Glen Kingie Boulder......with tree

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Glen Kingie

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Just before the relative safety of Glendessarry House came into view I suffered a both-legs-up-to-the-knee bog experience, which just about topped of my day :thumbdown:

Eventually back on the main Glendessarry track I was able to find a wee burn and wash my boots and trousers off, at which point the three lively women caught me up as they headed back. It seems there day had been far more fruitful than mine, as they had succeeded in ticking off their three munros :clap:
P1020309.JPG
Back in Glen Dessarry

As for me, I was a frustrated man as I set off home. That was one long trip for a single, measly Corbett :roll: There was one special moment on the rollercoaster road back along the Loch though :D
P1020315.JPG
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PeteR
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby riverlodge » Thu Oct 24, 2013 10:34 am

some lovely shots, sounds like a tough day.
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby BoyVertiginous » Thu Oct 24, 2013 1:49 pm

Thanks for sharing the pics of this area. Plans to do these this weekend, including a night in Kinbreak bothy, have been shelved for now however, good to know what lies in wait for perhaps a dry, frosty spring weekend or long summer day.
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby basscadet » Thu Oct 24, 2013 2:26 pm

Och aye, that eastern ridge of Sgurr and Fhuarain is a B***er! Still a really bonny part of the world though :D
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby pigeon » Thu Oct 24, 2013 6:51 pm

You're no having much luck getting to Sgurr Mor Pete :( Been trying to fit this one in as well but reading your report i think i'll forget it for this year :lol: You still got a couple of good walks done in the area though and you'll be an expert on that Arkaig road by now :wink:
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby dooterbang » Thu Oct 24, 2013 9:41 pm

I've still to do Gairich and Sgorr Mor but reading this I think I'll do them both from Loch Quoich :shock:

Nice report and character building to say the least.

Well done.
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby basscadet » Fri Oct 25, 2013 8:28 am

dooterbang wrote:I've still to do Gairich and Sgorr Mor but reading this I think I'll do them both from Loch Quoich :shock:

Nice report and character building to say the least.

Well done.


You do realise that the path up to Gairich from Loch Quoich is a soggy nightmare too :? :lol:
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby dogplodder » Fri Oct 25, 2013 4:23 pm

A good read with photos to match - but think I'll keep this one for after a long dry spell! :lol:
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby Collaciotach » Sat Oct 26, 2013 11:24 am

Close a bhalaich ... close :clap:

Grand pics and good read

Think I would have chanced a run up Sgurr Mor you were that close :D

You just want the excuse to return don't ya haha
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby heatheronthehills » Sat Oct 26, 2013 12:58 pm

Lovely photos and great report. I know what you mean about the eerie sound of the stags. I'm always worried in case I inadvertently come across 2 locked in combat. Wouldn't like to get in the way of those antlers :shock:
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby SusieThePensioner » Sat Oct 26, 2013 9:37 pm

Sorry, Pete, but I did have to laugh at your report.................it was the bog and slop...............oh, and the three lively women :shock: :lol: :lol: :lol:
Just glad you weren't too bogged down with it all and managed to get some great photos :wink: :thumbup:
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby Graeme D » Sun Oct 27, 2013 9:17 pm

Ach, a good day out is a good day out regardless of the haul of blue balloons. Great set of photos too.
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby PeteR » Thu Oct 31, 2013 10:50 pm

riverlodge wrote:some lovely shots, sounds like a tough day.


Thanks riverlodge......and yes, it was a bit tough :lol:
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby PeteR » Thu Oct 31, 2013 10:51 pm

BoyVertiginous wrote:Thanks for sharing the pics of this area. Plans to do these this weekend, including a night in Kinbreak bothy, have been shelved for now however, good to know what lies in wait for perhaps a dry, frosty spring weekend or long summer day.


:lol: :lol: :lol: Definitely a route for a drought :shock:
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Re: One day I'll return to settle the Sgurr

Postby PeteR » Thu Oct 31, 2013 10:53 pm

basscadet wrote:Och aye, that eastern ridge of Sgurr and Fhuarain is a B***er! Still a really bonny part of the world though :D


Cheers basscadet. B***er is a more polite description than I was using at the time :lol:
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