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A touch of Heaven after a day of purgatory.
by jepsonscotland » Sat Sep 20, 2014 9:32 pm
Munros included on this walk: An Coileachan, Beinn Liath Mhor Fannaich, Meall a'Chrasgaidh, Meall Gorm, Sgurr Mor, Sgurr nan Clach Geala, Sgurr nan Each
Date walked: 18/09/2014
Time taken: 18 hours
Distance: 44 km
Ascent: 2726m14 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).
After heading out with Karen (kmai1961), Martin (FF), and Gary (backpacker) on the Saturday we trudged with our previously mentioned, sizeable packs with everything and a couple of kitchen sinks. (as eloquently described by Martin in his report of the Saturday)
This was quickly repaid by the almost spiritual experience of a first cloud inversion that lasted well over an hour and put us on such a high that even when we 'fell off' later , we still couldn't come down!
After saying goodbye to our WH friends, at the eastern end of the Fannichs, we headed back to Sgurr Mor to collect our heavy burdens with dread. It suddenly looked a very long way!
After battling our fatigue on the long trip back, (and re-united with our heavy packs ) we headed over SM and down to the Loch south of Carn na Criche, where we would pitch camp, not long before dark!
After a hot meal and donning our down jackets , we got a great view of the stars. So much more detail to the naked eye, than available near our urban dwellings. Breathtaking.
On Sunday morning we awoke in the mist with hazy sunshine, looking up at Sgurr Mor from about 2820 feet.
But, as soon as the direct sunlight arrived the mist cleared, leaving us with a beautiful sunrise, certainly the most memorable for me. Looking down into the Glen over the western side of SM, we caught our first sight of our first cloud inversion. Words and photos don't do it justice, but we'll give it a try.
Before long the mist rolled in, so we had breakfast (lamb casserole ) and then headed up Sgurr nan Clach Geala, hoping for some views higher up.
As we descended to Sgurr nan Each, the cloud took over again, but we were not down heartened after the earlier treats of that morning.
A quick snack and then back to the tents to pack up and return. The cloud disappeared after the second climbing of SnCG, leaving great views and photo opportunities in all directions.
On returning to pack up the tents, we met the only other person we saw on the hill that day. A real surprise considering the weather. Then headed off to the last of our weekends' seven Munros, Meall a'Chrasgaidh. We had intended to do all nine, but the weight of the packs and all the effort of Saturday's excursion had got the better of us!
On the final summit we made the decision to ''straight line'' our return route to the car, instead of the lengthy, gentle path back to the western car park with several miles along the road. This turned out to be both a blessing (quicker) and a curse (steep with a capital S). It was incredibly steep, but looked so inviting compared to the 'long way round'.
When we looked back up the way we came down, we weren't really surprised that we fell!! I'm not sure we'd have attempted it, if we had even a glimpse of the look up!
The return back to the car gave some great photo opps, especially as the sun moved behind the hills to our west.
Our final view of the hills, before setting off through the midge swarm in the car.
A fantastic weekend all round.
Saturday was a day of gruelling effort but with good friends on some great hills. Over 6000 feet of ascent. A real achievement as neither of us had ever walked that far with that much kit before.
Sunday was very different, almost effortless by comparison. What a morning wake up, followed by such incredible beauty seemed to rid us of all sense of fatigue. A huge tick on the ''bucket list'' and something I shall never forget. Still on a high after a week!
A huge THANK YOU to all of you on Walkhighlands for all of your encouragement, wisdom, enticing walk reports, tech advice, lifts, sweets but most of all a warm welcome to the club and helping us feed our passion for the hills.
Chris (jepsonscotland) and Andy (Flump)
Sorry it's taken a week to create, but it's our first go and we've been on different shifts.
Maybe if we start another one now we can use it for our 100th celebration.
by weaselmaster » Sat Sep 20, 2014 9:34 pm
Sounds a grand day out
by Gordie12 » Sat Sep 20, 2014 9:47 pm
by Fife Flyer » Sat Sep 20, 2014 9:50 pm
How come you got the decent weather? Maybe that was your reward for carrying those heavy rucksacks
I can't remember the last time I got views from a summit
Now that you have finally finished your first report, the next one will be a scoosh As you probably discovered eventually, compiling a report isn't a two minute task
by rockhopper » Sat Sep 20, 2014 10:28 pm
by kev_russ » Sun Sep 21, 2014 1:08 pm
by Backpacker » Sun Sep 21, 2014 2:00 pm
Like Martin, I'm struggling to remember the last time I got a view
by jepsonscotland » Sun Sep 21, 2014 7:07 pm
I completely forgot about the ''brocken spectre'' pics!!!
I'll ask Andy (Flump) if he can send me a copy and i'll add it in to a reply.
Another 'bucket list' tick, I think.
by Flump » Sun Sep 21, 2014 7:35 pm
Here's the best spectre pic I took, a little faint but they looked great at the time.
Also, a pic I forgot about when we created the report, a shot of the ridge we did on the Saturday between Beinn Liath Mhor Fannaich & Sgurr Mor (in the clag so we couldn't see anything).
A great learning experience, mustn't take as much food and water next time although stuffing my face all weekend to make my pack lighter was nice.
by jepsonscotland » Sun Sep 21, 2014 9:15 pm
Great shots and perfect timing!
by simon-b » Sun Sep 21, 2014 9:58 pm
by Silverhill » Mon Sep 22, 2014 8:29 pm
by litljortindan » Mon Sep 22, 2014 8:38 pm
by kmai1961 » Tue Sep 23, 2014 8:36 am
What a great report, and what marvellous pics. I'm so chuffed for you that your first wild camp was such a roaring success: views and stars and a brocken spectre and inversions! You must be living virtuously. Or maybe it's because your socks are always on the correct feet .
Well done, lads. See youse soon.
by jepsonscotland » Tue Sep 23, 2014 11:09 am
kmai1961 wrote:Or maybe it's because your socks are always on the correct feet .
Thank you all for your kind comments. We were very, very lucky. I crack a beaming smile just thinking about it.
All credit to Andy (Flump) for the photos.
I really must get a decent camera, maybe a Sony, as suggested recently. (thanks ML)