Blood and snotters - Damhain done, Fhudhair failed
by Graeme D » Sat Dec 14, 2013 10:52 pm
Grahams included on this walk: Beinn Damhain
Date walked: 14/12/2013
Time taken: 3.8 hours
Distance: 10.7 km
Ascent: 740mRegister or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
I had originally planned one of my bogey hills for this weekend - Beinn Mheadhoin. I planned to walk in on the Friday evening to the Hutchison Hut before claiming the pesky hill in the morning. In fact, I had originally scheduled it for last weekend, but then something else came up and put paid to that. Then Kev and I had planned a walk for next Saturday before my wife informed me that I was going through to Paisley that day to pick up my niece and bring her through to Perth. So it had to be this weekend, and Mheadhoin was back on. I mentioned it to Kev and he was interested. However a few days later he had to pull out so it was just me. Then the weather forecast for the weekend suggested the weather was going to turn pants. In the meantime however my mother-in-law had made arrangements to have Ailsa this weekend, and with Debbie at a work Christmas do on the Friday night and then out on Saturday for a boozy afternoon with some other mums, it looked like the ideal opportunity for me to get out. If only the forecast wasn't crap.
Before I knew the forecast, I had already scrapped the Beinn Mheadhoin idea and had formed a notion of driving up on the Saturday morning to do Spidean Mialach and Gleouraich. The forecast then put paid to that, and any notions of a similar scale. By Friday evening when I was checking various weather sites and watching forecasts on TV, I was on the verge of packing it in altogether, but given the open goalmouth, so to speak, I had to get out somehow. I hadn't been out since the Kinlochleven meet in early November and the last week or two at work had been hard, with a huge workload ahead of the home straight to the Christmas holidays, so I really needed a hill fix.
I packed, looked out a few maps to give me some options, and set the alarm for 6.30 - the forecasts had suggested that the day would start better than it would later become. As it was, I was awake a little before that. Looking outside all looked calm. I had breakfast and made the decision to go for Meall an Fhudhair and Beinn Damhain.
An uneventful journey had me up at the start in Glen Falloch by 9 o'clock and off up the track 10 minutes later with Lucy in tow. A landrover passed us just before the railway bridge but that was all the human life I saw until I got back down almost to the car nearly 4 hours later. Strange!
Anyway, as for the title, well it was fairly obvious from the outset that today would be an ongoing and ultimately losing battle against the snotters. As for the blood, there were a couple of blood loss incidents to provide distraction from the drenching.
Just before the junction in the track the rain came on and the waterproofs came out. From then on it was a real drenching. I quickly decided to give the Corbett a miss today and just get the Graham under my belt. Frankly I couldn't be arsed doing the tricky looking Troisgeach ridge in these conditions!
The wind wasn't quite as bad as some of the more eye-watering forecasts of gusts approaching and indeed exceeding 100mph, but once I got above about 600 metres it started to really wind up. There were one or two exposed stretches where I was really glad that I wasn't on an exposed ridge or the Cairngorm plateau.
Just before the summit came the first blood loss incident - a slip on a sodden scrambling section (I had taken my Sealskinz gloves off to get a better handhold and besides, even they had completely waterlogged in the downpour) - resulting in a gash on the palm of my left hand.
I didn't linger at the summit before taking a more direct line back down into the glen for the walk back through what could only be described as a swamp to the little dam at the start of the track. Just by the dam came the second blood loss incident of the day when I suddenly tasted blood in my mouth before realising that I had a nose bleed. It was quickly stemmed and I resumed my walk back along the track below Troisgeach. It was frightening how the water courses had swollen. Torrents of water were now rushing off the slopes and into the ditches by the track. These were now not coping and the track was beginning to flood in places.
I was back at the car in just under four hours and Lucy seemed very pleased to be able to jump up into the back of the car and stretch out. I did what I could to dry out before heading to the Londis store in Crianlarich to pick up some beer and then negotiating the surface water on the roads back to Perth for a well deserved hot shower.
by PeteR » Sat Dec 14, 2013 11:31 pm
Despite the weather you had today there were still some good views to be had by the looks of it. Shame you didn't get the opportunity for the Corbett though, as it's a good little hill in my view. Still, you can return when the weather is fairer Same as you will be able to do with Mheadhoin one day.
by pollyh33 » Sat Dec 14, 2013 11:52 pm
Hard to believe that you didn't see anyone out on the hills today, where was everyone???
PS very nice selfie
by Morecambe Monkey » Sat Dec 14, 2013 11:54 pm
by The Rodmiester » Sun Dec 15, 2013 9:21 am
by Gordie12 » Sun Dec 15, 2013 3:14 pm
by pigeon » Sun Dec 15, 2013 4:47 pm
by Johnny Corbett » Sun Dec 15, 2013 7:21 pm
by Collaciotach » Sun Dec 15, 2013 9:04 pm
Aye need a fix myself , early November as well
by Graeme D » Sun Dec 15, 2013 10:37 pm
pollyh33 wrote:PS very nice selfie
Hmmm, yeah, not sure I'll be updating my avatar or FB profile pic with this one any time soon!
The Rodmiester wrote:Well done though, bet that hot bath felt good!
It was bliss, and the cold beer afterwards wasn't too shabby either!
Johnny Corbett wrote:You man. Good to see you doing something tougher than the Rannoch Moor Marilyn
Yeah JC, I just couldn't bring myself to do the Rannoch Moor Marilyns!
by kevsbald » Mon Dec 16, 2013 3:34 pm
by Graeme D » Mon Dec 16, 2013 11:55 pm
kevsbald wrote:Well done - it's a good wee hill. Sorry we never got Mheadhoin done - maybe January 17th?
Sounds like a plan worthy of some serious consideration!