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Gairich

Gairich


Postby bigbertie » Sat Nov 15, 2008 9:29 pm

Route description: Gairich, Loch Quoich

Munros included on this walk: Gairich

Date walked: 15/11/2008

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I'm sitting at home gnashing my teeth as I had planned to go to the Cairngorms but had to cancel & now the weather looks really good there! To pass the time I'm writing up an ascent of Gairich on 5 November by the route described on walkhighlands. Actually it is the only sensible route for a quick ascent as the Loch Quoich reservoir has submerged most alternatives, but luckily it's a very pleasant route with fantastic views, in good conditions.

On 5 November there was a heavy inversion over the Great Glen and Glen Garry, so I drove up to Loch Quoich in zero visibility. When I found the dam I could see nothing, but as I set off, the sky above me transformed into a perfect sunny day, but the heavy cloud remained solid in the glens all day. Phew.

2008 11 05 001 web.jpg
View down Glen Garry - Ben Tee far right


I was a bit surprised to find the gate onto the dam locked. Aren't access routes across dams supposed to be left open these days? Luckily the gate is easy to jump over. The walk along the reservoir and then across to the forest is always described as boggy but was not as bad as I expected. The views of Gairich from here are excellent.

2008 11 05 005 web.jpg
Gairich from Quoich reservoir.


From the forest the route westwards up the long E ridge is obvious and easy as far as Bac nam Foid, after which it becomes suddenly steeper and more dramatic. A good path wends its way through and up some rocks and along the corrie lip - very helpful if condtions were bad. The views were amazing, with peaks in every direction, including Nevis, the Cuillins, Knoydart peaks.....I could go on. One peak that looked unusually interesting from here is Fraoch Bheinn (a Corbett) across Glen Kingie. Eventually dragged myself away and strolled slowly down to the reservoir again.

2008 11 05 023 web.jpg
Gairich again - mid afternoon
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Re: Gairich

Postby canisp » Sat Nov 15, 2008 10:44 pm

Looked like you had a great day out. Good photo’s, especially like the reflection shot :D
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Re: Gairich

Postby Paul Webster » Sun Nov 16, 2008 6:48 pm

Good report - like Canisp I like the reflection shot especially.

I was a bit surprised to find the gate onto the dam locked. Aren't access routes across dams supposed to be left open these days? Luckily the gate is easy to jump over.


Yes, I got a complaint by email from a walker who found it locked recently. I couldn't really remember the gate, but eventually found out from someone who heads that way regularly that it has always been locked (I must have stepped over it like you said). Following this I asked the local access officer about dam access as I had been under the impression that routes across dams were covered by access legislation - only to be told that they are not covered and there are no official rights across dams. I was so sure this was wrong (I'd read otherwise in a guidebook!) that I read the actual legislation :shock: but it does seem to be true. But if you can step over it it doesn't really matter.
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Re: Gairich

Postby wandererjon » Sun Nov 16, 2008 9:09 pm

Love the photos- the reflection one is fantastic, but so is the first one; the mist gives it a really "moody" sensation. 8)
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Re: Gairich

Postby bigbertie » Mon Nov 17, 2008 10:25 pm

Paul, yes I've read it somewhere recently too - I thought it might be the Land Reform Act 2003 but when I checked this I couldn't see dams specifically mentioned. It is particularly important here as there is not much choice of routes. One of my guidebooks says cross the dam or the outflow below the dam, but this was clearly impossible as a torrent of water was being released and the river was over its banks! Luckily the gate is very easy to cross (and the small gate on the far side was not locked).

Quoich reservoir outflow.jpg
not so easy to cross!
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Re: Gairich

Postby mountain coward » Tue Jan 06, 2009 5:42 am

In these days of 'elf & safety' legislation, I'd be very surprised if you could legally walk across a dam wall (I know they have walls etc. but you know how it is...) I was always under the impression that it's 'Water Board' land and that you're not allowed to walk across the dam tops but have to use the other access roads.
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Re: Gairich

Postby Paul Webster » Tue Jan 06, 2009 9:13 am

I should point out: it is a road that you follow across the top of the dam. It is walled on both sides.
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