walkhighlands

Share your personal walking route experiences in Scotland, and comment on other peoples' reports.
Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.

Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?


Postby Huff_n_Puff » Fri Jul 18, 2014 10:23 pm

Route description: Beinn Dearg - the Four Munros circuit

Munros included on this walk: Beinn Dearg (Ullapool), Cona' Mheall, Eididh nan Clach Geala, Meall nan Ceapraichean

Date walked: 11/07/2014

Time taken: 12 hours

Distance: 26 km

Ascent: 1591m

9 people think this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

Sometimes a hill (or a group of hills in this case) will leap out at me when I'm not really expecting it and demand to be climbed – on Easter Sunday this year Beinn Dearg and friends did precisely that. We were walking up Am Faochagach on a beautiful morning, as we got higher mountain after mountain appeared over the rounded shoulders of Am Faochagach, Beinn Dearg, Cona Mheall and Meall nan Ceapraichean looked so appealing … who could resist ... :D :D

Image

Originally I thought we could walk the four in 2 goes, perhaps including Seana Bhraigh with Eididh nan Clach Geala to complete the 5 just south of Ullapool, but after a couple of long walks this summer we decided to go for the 4 munro circuit, after all it would be easy enough to shorten the walk if it was proving too much of a challenge. So with an MWIS forecast of virtual certainty of cloud free munros in the north west we set off.

The walk in from Inverlael and into Gleann na Sguaib is very gentle and long - although I only realised how long on the way out – on the way it it was a doddle, easy path and good views.

Start of the walk
Image

Two of our goals
Image

Back to Inverlael
Image

About 2km into the walk I realised my walking poles were still in the car – no way was I going back for them – :sick: :sick: . From the photos I've seen I here I know this walk had some steep bits – och weeelll the knees would just have to manage under their own steam :cry: .

As we gained height we crossed a couple of burns, which were very low but which could be a challenge in spate, there was also a lovely stepped waterfall on our left.
Image

As we entered Coire Mathair Lathail the cliffs on either side created a terrific atmosphere – very majestic, a quick pull up to Lochan Lathail and wonderful views to the west.
Image

Then up to Bealach an Lochain Uaine where An Teallach came into view. Long pause here to take more photos and refuel, then off up Beinn Dearg.

Image

Image

The destitution wall, or famine wall, dominates this part of the walk. It's a sombre monument to the harshness of the environment and the determination of the crofters who built it in the 1840s in exchange for food.

Image

Image

Image

It certainly dominates the immediate landscape on the pull up to Beinn Dearg summit. As we approached it a black animal suddenly leapt over it from the far side, what creature was this? – some strange local wildlife? :shock: On a second look, naw, it was just Bertie returning from a private reccie – but he did give me a start :lol: :lol:

The pull up the boulders by the side of the wall was probably easier without poles, but I wasn't looking forward to the descent – it was fairly steep. Still the views were magnificent ...

Going up and looking west
Image

The summit was reached, more food and more photos.

Image

Image

Seana Bhraigh with Ben Klibreck on the right
Image

An Teallach
Image

The Torridons
Image

Ben Wyvis and Am Faochagach
Image

The descent wasn't as bad as I'd expected – without poles I had to balance more carefully, but it was easier than trying to find stable positions for the poles, so lesson for the future is to stow the poles in some circumstances. On the way down Bertie found an opportunity to spook another walker … at the bealach we met 2 others heading up Beinn Dearg. We headed over the wall again and off to Cona Mheall, past the beautiful Choire Ghranda.

Choire Ghranda
Image

Cona Mheall
Image
We kept well to the right and went up the easy grassy slopes, avoiding the boulder field, before turning left to head for the cairn. There were some useful way marker cairns to help us find the same route back down.

Beinn Dearg from the slopes of Cona Mheall
Image

Anyone seen a cairn?
Image

At the top it was time for a second lunch,
Image

then out with the camera for shots of Assynt,
Image

Seana Bhraigh
Image
(another long summer walk for this year????)

Loch Glascarnoch
Image

and what I think is a hanging valley (or should that be a hanging glen) just to the north east of Cona Mheall.

Image

Image

The photos show Loch Prille (at the eastern end of the hanging valley) draining down into Loch na Still.

Then we were off back to Bealach an Lochain Uaine arriving there about 3:30, four hours after we first got there! At this point we worked out how far we'd have to walk to complete the 4 munros compared with finishing at this point. There seemed only to be mile, mile and a half difference in the routes and as Meall nan Ceapraichean was almost close enough to touch we set off to finish the job.

Waiting for the photographer
Image

Meall nan Ceapraichean was a gentle ascent and provided a great view point

Image

Beinn Dearg and the famine wall
Image

– but where were the views of the Assynt hills – hidden behind smoke – the wind was blowing the smoke from a forest fire to the west of Beinn Ghobhlach north into Assynt – all that walking a just hazy view of the hills …

Image

Smoky summer isles
Image

Then off again for the final hill of the day. By this time Biggles and Bertie were taking any opportunity they could for a rest – no racing around while we munched cereal bars – when we rested they rested.

Image

We had been concerned about water for them on this route, so we were carrying extra water, but despite the dry summer they were able to find plenty, we only had to supplement their natural supplies a couple of times.

The route between Meall nan Ceapraichean and Eididh nan Clach Geala was easy to start with, but soon care is needed to negotiate the boulder fields and avoid the crags on the north side of Ceann Garbh. We followed a gradual descent line east and found a good route down – and eventually joined up with a path near the bealach, but this could be tricky in clag and I appreciate why some people do this round the opposite way.

Route off Ceann Garbh
Image

We chose a short and steepish route up Eididh nan Clach Geala, having lost the path again. We visited both cairns on the top, but reckon the northern one is highest. Then, yes you've guessed – more photos – more food – more resting. Then the final walk out, that long walk out.

Assynt hills
Image

Seana Bhraigh
Image

Boulder fields - Beinn Dearg from Eididh nan Clach Geala
Image

We took a line off the hill that met up with the stalkers' path from Loch a Chnapaich further to the east than the WH walk description suggests – it was probably faster, but needs care to avoid the crags, then we were on good paths back to Inverlael.

Meeting of the paths - from Eididh nan Clach Geala (left) and Beinn Dearg (right)
Image

Back to Inverlael
Image

Even the dogs thought it was a long walk, and Biggles got decidedly grumpy when a couple of miles before we reach the car he stood on something sharp and hurt his paw (its taken him all week and a lot of biccies to forgive us).

Just over 12 hours after we stared we were back at the car – pretty slow, but then the following day I realised I'd taken over 80 photos in the course of walking this quartet.

(... and my knees without the poles - sore the next day, but then fine :) )
Last edited by Huff_n_Puff on Wed Jul 30, 2014 5:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Huff_n_Puff
Walker
 
Posts: 893
Munros:247   Corbetts:16
Grahams:8   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:18   Hewitts:4
Wainwrights:1   Islands:17
Joined: Apr 13, 2012

Re: Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Postby gman » Fri Jul 18, 2014 10:43 pm

Perfect timing - did these on Thurs but the tops were in clag so it's great to see the views I missed :clap:
User avatar
gman
 
Posts: 628
Munros:250   Corbetts:4
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: Sep 12, 2011

Re: Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Postby Gordie12 » Fri Jul 18, 2014 11:10 pm

Hi Huff_ n_ Puff

Brilliant report and photos - makes me want to jump in the car and go and do these hills (maybe not this weekend though).
User avatar
Gordie12
Walker
 
Posts: 1769
Munros:112   Corbetts:62
Grahams:17   Donalds:21
Sub 2000:35   Hewitts:24
Wainwrights:24   
Joined: Sep 6, 2012
Location: Nr Forfar

Re: Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Postby PeteR » Sat Jul 19, 2014 8:53 am

Superb photos :D

Was up there a few weeks back. It's a superb round and you certainly had the weather for it :clap:
User avatar
PeteR
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 1952
Munros:282   Corbetts:150
Grahams:86   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:157   Hewitts:3
Islands:7
Joined: Jan 27, 2010
Location: North Ayrshire

Re: Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Postby Alteknacker » Sat Jul 19, 2014 10:22 am

Great report, great pics, best part of the world :clap: :clap: :clap:
User avatar
Alteknacker
Scrambler
 
Posts: 2679
Munros:167   Corbetts:29
Hewitts:199
Wainwrights:74   
Joined: May 25, 2013
Location: Effete South (of WIgan, anyway)

Re: Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Postby rockhopper » Sat Jul 19, 2014 11:02 am

That was a cracker of a day ! Brings back great memories of this area - but your views and weather were so much better. Enjoyed the photos - cheers :)
User avatar
rockhopper
 
Posts: 6308
Munros:282   Corbetts:201
Grahams:59   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:8   Hewitts:2
Wainwrights:3   Islands:19
Joined: Jun 1, 2009
Location: Glasgow

Re: Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Postby litljortindan » Sat Jul 19, 2014 12:12 pm

A good read. Thanks!
User avatar
litljortindan
Walker
 
Posts: 1720
Munros:111   Corbetts:55
Grahams:26   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:47   Hewitts:12
Wainwrights:10   
Joined: Dec 11, 2011

Re: Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Postby Huff_n_Puff » Sat Jul 19, 2014 4:55 pm

gman wrote:Perfect timing - did these on Thurs but the tops were in clag so it's great to see the views I missed :clap:


Shame you didn't get the views - but I was impressed that you did Seena Braigh too :clap: :clap:

rockhopper wrote:That was a cracker of a day ! Brings back great memories of this area - but your views and weather were so much better. Enjoyed the photos - cheers :)


It was the sort of day that makes me smile even when its pouring down (like now) :lol:

Alteknacker wrote:Great report, great pics, best part of the world :clap: :clap: :clap:

Thanks - yes I'm partial to the north west too its just beautiful :D

PeteR wrote:Superb photos :D

Was up there a few weeks back. It's a superb round and you certainly had the weather for it :clap:


I read your reports Pete - both of them, so thanks. I must say I wouldn't want to tackle that bracken at the end of the day. :D

Gordie12 wrote:Hi Huff_ n_ Puff

Brilliant report and photos - makes me want to jump in the car and go and do these hills (maybe not this weekend though).


These hills are worth the drive - in good weather though :lol:

litljortindan wrote:A good read. Thanks!
Thanks.
User avatar
Huff_n_Puff
Walker
 
Posts: 893
Munros:247   Corbetts:16
Grahams:8   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:18   Hewitts:4
Wainwrights:1   Islands:17
Joined: Apr 13, 2012

Re: Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Postby Beaner001 » Mon Jul 21, 2014 9:42 am

Well done you two, thats some walk. I still have 4 of these lot to do so this report will come in handy, another enjoyable read with cracking photos :clap: Glad to see the Spaniels making a comeback to the hills :D By the looks of things Roger would give them a run for their money in terms of fitness :D
User avatar
Beaner001
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 743
Munros:234   Corbetts:26
Grahams:3   
Sub 2000:5   Hewitts:2
Wainwrights:1   
Joined: Sep 17, 2013
Location: Aberdeenshire

Re: Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Postby Huff_n_Puff » Mon Jul 21, 2014 10:06 pm

Beaner001 wrote:Well done you two, thats some walk. I still have 4 of these lot to do so this report will come in handy, another enjoyable read with cracking photos :clap: Glad to see the Spaniels making a comeback to the hills :D By the looks of things Roger would give them a run for their money in terms of fitness :D


Hope you get as good weather when you do them - they are a smashing group of hills, really enjoyed the day. Had to laugh at your comment about Roger giving the spaniels a run for their money - what was he doing when I read this? Out running up our nearest hill with the spaniels :lol: :lol:
User avatar
Huff_n_Puff
Walker
 
Posts: 893
Munros:247   Corbetts:16
Grahams:8   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:18   Hewitts:4
Wainwrights:1   Islands:17
Joined: Apr 13, 2012

Re: Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Postby kmai1961 » Tue Jul 22, 2014 6:24 pm

Wow, what a great day out -- and fabulous photos! If we couldn't just order up days like that, eh? :roll: Well done! :clap:

Karen
kmai1961
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 495
Munros:282   Corbetts:109
Grahams:38   Donalds:50
Sub 2000:12   Hewitts:25
Wainwrights:30   Islands:24
Joined: Aug 12, 2012
Location: nr Glasgow

Re: Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Postby Lightfoot2017 » Thu Jul 24, 2014 8:25 am

Great report and some fantastic photos. :clap: Well done on an epic trek in such sunny conditions. :D I'm envious.
User avatar
Lightfoot2017
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 722
Munros:161   
Joined: Jun 28, 2012
Location: Dunfermline

Re: Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Postby dogplodder » Thu Jul 24, 2014 10:13 pm

Well done the four of you - that was a great round you did! :D

Hope the sore paw healed quickly. :?
User avatar
dogplodder
 
Posts: 3445
Munros:226   Corbetts:52
Grahams:16   
Sub 2000:24   Hewitts:5
Wainwrights:9   Islands:21
Joined: Jul 16, 2011

Re: Beinn Dearg Quartet - music for the camera?

Postby Huff_n_Puff » Sat Jul 26, 2014 9:37 pm

kmai1961 wrote:Wow, what a great day out -- and fabulous photos! If we couldn't just order up days like that, eh? :roll: Well done! :clap:

Karen


Thanks Karen - the only way I get decent hill walking days is by being retired :lol: :lol:

Lightfoot2017 wrote:Great report and some fantastic photos. :clap: Well done on an epic trek in such sunny conditions. :D I'm envious.


Yes, it was a brilliant day, thanks.

dogplodder wrote:Well done the four of you - that was a great round you did! :D

Hope the sore paw healed quickly. :?


Yes, Biggles is fine now - but Bertie is limping after our last outing. Perhaps we should shorten the routes :lol: :lol:
User avatar
Huff_n_Puff
Walker
 
Posts: 893
Munros:247   Corbetts:16
Grahams:8   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:18   Hewitts:4
Wainwrights:1   Islands:17
Joined: Apr 13, 2012

9 people think this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).



Walkhighlands community forum is now advert free

We need help to keep the site online.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by setting up a monthly donation by direct debit?



Return to Walk reports - Scotland

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: MJ Miller and 38 guests