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Wet and windy in the Cullins

Wet and windy in the Cullins

Postby thand » Mon May 19, 2014 9:55 pm

Munros included on this walk: Am Basteir, Bruach na Frìthe, Inaccessible Pinnacle, Sgùrr a' Ghreadaidh, Sgùrr a' Mhadaidh, Sgùrr Alasdair, Sgùrr Dubh Mòr, Sgùrr Mhic Chòinnich, Sgùrr na Banachdich, Sgùrr nan Eag, Sgùrr nan Gillean

Date walked: 18/05/2014

Time taken: 28.7 hours

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Days: 4
Munros: 11
Dry summits: 4
Clear summits: 1
Abseils: 3
Skye damage: Phone, waterproofs, gloves
Photos: 0

Got picked up by Jennifer and Brad from Westhill at 5.30pm. Drive out to Skye to meet EJ at Broadford backpackers hostel. Clear sky all the way and get a call from Gillian, our guide (Skye Guides) as we drive down Loch Ness. Weather looks dodgy for the week and the best "wind window" looks to be tomorrow morning so we're going straight to the Pinn :shock:

We start from Glen Brittle and head up the right hand shoulder to reach the Pinn. Gillian sets a good steady pace and we're soon up to the first shoulder. At this point the we're in cloud and we harness up for the first chimney. A quick walk around and we're soon staring at the Pinn. Looks not too bad from here. Shame we have to drop down to the bottom. hmm a little more interesting now.

At this point the wind gets up and the rain starts. What did Gillian say about basalt in the wet???

Right down to business, the four of us rope up again and head up the first section. This isn't too bad, good holds... ok halfway and suddenly it gets airy, slippery and blowy, hmmm. No views due the cloud but if feels like we're looking into the abyss. Quickly we make it up to the top, and the weather gets worse. We get lowered off the top instead of an abseil as we need to get down quickly.

An easy walk to Sgurr na Banadhdaich in full waterproofs and then back down in the cloud and the rain.

5hrs 30 and two down.

Turns out there's no drying room at the hostel so we rig up a makeshift sauna in the room in an attempt to start the next day in dry gear.

Dinner at cafesia in broadford is a winner - wood fired pizza and good coffee.

Big day today starting again at Glen Brittle.
Cloud is down again, we get to Loch Coir ' a Ghrunda and then head to Sgurr Nan Eag. Its good scrambly fun. Once we reach the summit we scramble back down to the main ridge before moving out to Sgurr Dubh Mor. Again we come back to the ridge scramble on for a bit and rope up for a chimney on the way to the Sgurr Alasdair. Summit seems to have a lot of basalt making it tough underfoot.

At the summit we decide to press on to Sgurr Mhic Choinnich. We can't go over the main ridge due to the rain (did I mention the rain?) so we head about 150m down the great stone chute before cutting up "bomb alley" and onto Collies ledge. We rope up and slither along the wet basalt. Great fun and over too soon. We cut up to the summit for even more scrambling.

We come down via another scree chute surfing most of the way. The walk out continues and we finally get a view at the bottom down Loch Brittle. Some place!!!

9 and a half hours and that's another 4 ticked off 8)

Quality food at the Slig

Wind is high so starting at Glen Brittle we take the chute up between Sgurr a Ghreadaidh to Sgurr aMhaidaidh. A steep start but we soon pull up to the "door". Its not raining. :lol:

We rope up and cut up to the right to Sgurr Mhadaidh. Rope off and across to the summit. We rope up back at the down climb and climb back down to the door. Rope off again and its a quick scramble up to Sgurr a Ghreadaidh.

We come back down the same route and are quickly down at the car

A quick 5hrs

Its only 2pm so we head over to the Talisker distillery

3 to go...

Last day and its an early start from the Slig. We head up the centre to Sgurr nan Gillean. The legs are feeling tired today and its quite a walk in. Once we hit the scree its quickly up and then roped up. We go up a chute and the guide disappears round a corner - oh there appears to be some considerable exposure there. A couple of steps and the floor disappears again. Once we're round this its up to the summit and wow views!!!

We abseil back down the bags and then abseilhead off to the bealach. The cloud comes down and we head over to Am Basteir. Its a fun scramble with one roped down climb. Then quickly up to the summit back in the cloud.

We descend and then abseil down to the tooth. At this point the rain comes back so we carefully scramble up to the tooth before bum shuffling back down to the Basteir cave. After climbing down into it we abseil off the ledge before heading up to Bruach Frithe. At this point the wind kicks in and it gets pretty miserable, oh apart from the fact 11 Black Cuillin munros done.

Its a long walk out in the rain back to the Slig for a dram and food.

8 hours, and they're all done.

Awesome trip
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Re: Wet and windy in the Cullins

Postby AnnieMacD » Tue May 20, 2014 7:53 pm

Sounds like a great trip - if a bit scary. Really enjoyed reading it and can imagine your waterproofs got a beating!
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Re: Wet and windy in the Cullins

Postby spiderwebb » Tue May 20, 2014 8:29 pm

Blimey thats one way to get them done :D
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Re: Wet and windy in the Cullins

Postby thand » Wed May 21, 2014 7:32 pm

Cheers guys. Wish I had some pics though.
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Posts: 127
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Re: Wet and windy in the Cullins

Postby jenniferc6 » Wed May 21, 2014 8:26 pm

Can't believe it's a week since we were up the Pinn! It was an amazing experience and I loved every minute, thanks again for making the arrangements :)
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Joined: Aug 29, 2010
Location: Lonmay, Aberdeenshire

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