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Visions of Schiehallion - Kinloch Rannoch Corbetts

Visions of Schiehallion - Kinloch Rannoch Corbetts


Postby weaselmaster » Sun Jan 04, 2015 11:04 pm

Corbetts included on this walk: Beinn a'Chuallaich, Beinn Mholach

Date walked: 04/01/2015

Time taken: 9.48 hours

Distance: 30.5 km

Ascent: 1571m

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There are a number of Perthshire Corbetts sitting on my list to be climbed at present and this weekend thought we'd take a trip up to Kinloch Rannoch and visit a couple of them. Both have been in the sights before - Beinn Mholach was supposed to be combined with Meall na Leitreach from the Loch Garry side and Beinn a'Chuillaich was meant to have been done the weekend we didn't manage to get Beinn nan Oighreag and its neighbour done in a day. I'd decided - after a consult of the SMC Corbetts book - to do these two from the south. So Kinloch Rannoch it was. Left early on Saturday morning and decided to take the A9 to Pitlochry rather than the wee roads due to the likelihood of ice on the road. There was quite enough ice on the twisty turny 20 mile road past Lochs Tummel/Rannoch to make me a bit gingery even with the new winter tyres on the 4x4. Drove through a sleepy Kinloch Rannoch just after 9am and found a small parking place just past the start of the walk - perfect spot to wild camp too, fortunately - there's even a sign on an old oak tree there confirming the wild camping rules. Saved having to search about for another venue when we got off the hill.

Route

mholach_S.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts



Parking space
ImageP1050359 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Schiehallion through the trees
ImageP1050361 by 23weasels, on Flickr

There's one mountain that dominates the landscape from here - Schiehallion. I could see its pointy form from the parking space and throughout the walk there she was behind us, pointing skywards. There's a public right of way sign that marks the beginning of the walk that takes you past Annat farmhouse. We took the wrong path, heading through the gate NNE rather than just past the farmhouse and therefore had to clamber over a deer fence to get back onto the proper track :roll: . Lovely reds and greens coloured the hillside and over to the west the snowy outline of the Ben Alder hills came into view. What a lovely day. The track turns sharply to the west at the beginning of a plantation and from that point on the summit cairn of Beinn Mholach was easily visible in the distance. It's relatively unusual to be walking towards a hill and to be able to see the top you're heading for from such a long way off. A river crossing over the Annat Burn and continue along the path until it meets a track coming up from Craiganour Lodge (only £5000 per week - starting price - if you want to stay there :lol: ) then cross the Allt a'Chreagain Odhair and follow the NW branch of it past the trees up to the White Stony Slope (Leathad Ban) which was certainly white if not very stony today. Much of the snow had been scoured away by the wind up til this point but from here on up to Mholach itself the going was on a mixture of semi-frozen peat hags and heathery clumps with about 4" of snow on top. We stopped for lunch on the flat area before crossing the stream and picked out the best line to ascend by. It seemed unlikely that there were 350m left to ascend, but indeed there were :lol:

Creag a'Mhadaidh
ImageP1050363 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Carn Fiaclach
ImageP1050366 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Annat Burn crossing
ImageP1050367 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Ben Alder Hills
ImageP1050370 by 23weasels, on Flickr

View back to Schiehallion & Loch Rannoch
ImageP1050371 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Beinn Mholach
ImageP1050374 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050377 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Pointy One
ImageP1050378 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Ascent route - looking back
ImageP1050381 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Allison had left her crampons in the car so I was hoping that the snow would remain soft enough as we gained height - which it did. After some huffing and puffing up the steep slope, avoiding ice covered rocks, the huge summit cairn came into view again and we were there. Layers of clouds sat over Loch Rannoch, blurring the views to the hills but adding atmosphere, Ben Alder hills were still clear. We had some discussion about what to do next. I knew there was a Graham nearby, but couldn't remember which it was - Gualann Sheileach or Creag a'Mhadaidh, both are the same height. Allison had dropped her woolly hat somewhere on the way in so instead we went back the same route we'd taken and luckily managed to find the offending article only partially frozen :lol: . It also meant that we got back in time to pitch the tent before the dark fell. Was a nice campspot beside the lapping waters of the Loch and although it's right beside the road, there was no traffic after 6pm.

Nearing the top - clouds coming down
ImageP1050384 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Loch Rannoch
ImageP1050386 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Cairn
ImageP1050389 by 23weasels, on Flickr

First Corbett of the year
ImageP1050390 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Looking SW
ImageP1050391 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050394 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050395 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050396 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Brooding clouds over Rannoch
ImageP1050399 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050402 by 23weasels, on Flickr

First bumslide of the year :lol:
ImageP1050403 by 23weasels, on Flickr

There it is again
ImageP1050406 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Carn Fiaclach - the "cornish pastie" hill
ImageP1050409 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050410 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Stats
ImageP1050418 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Sunset over Loch Rannoch
ImageP1050419 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050420 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050423 by 23weasels, on Flickr

A brief burst of rain was unexpected in the morning and stymied plans to have porridge outside by the water's edge. Instead, we packed up and drove back to Kinloch Rannoch, parking in the Medical Centre although as we discovered there's plenty of space in the centre of the village at the start of the walk. I was feeling sluggish and lethargic for some reason, and passing a sign for "Dunalastair" I knew how he felt :lol: The path is supposed to rise up a set of zigzags through the woods to a cairn, but the Hydro Board gave their apologies for desecrating the land with a bulldozed muddy track that rises straight up the middle of the zigzags. It did give rapid height gain but was mucky and steep. At the top of the trees a fence is reached and a track continues on over the stile. My route didn't go this way, although in retrospect it would make sense to continue up the track until the remains of a wall going W-E is reached at which you can follow the wall along to the East. Schiehallion glowered behind a rising band of cloud with the sun dazzling before being consumed by the mist.

Route

chuallai_S.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts



How I was feeling :lol:
ImageP1050426 by 23weasels, on Flickr

'Dozed track
ImageP1050429 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050431 by 23weasels, on Flickr


The clag was evident up ahead and the going was slow, over tussocks and heather half buried in a covering of snow. I'd left the snowshoes in the car again, and to be honest it was only in the final km or so I'd have made real use of them. A large herd of hinds and young deer crossed the hillside ahead of us - maybe 100 or more, filing in threes and fours towards the north. We headed up towards Meall Breac then turned to the north over flattish boggy terrain until we reached the final steep slope up to the summit of Chualliach. Attaining the summit area the wind was ferocious, blowing spindrift into eyes and other places and jostling the body as we made for the cairn and trig point. We sought shelter in the lee of the cairn and warmed up with some lunch and coffee then donned extra layers of clothing and goggles before setting off back down the way we'd come. On another day I'd have nipped over to the allegedly adjacent but invisible Corbett Top of Meal nan Eun, but in poor visibility and high wind that wasn't going to be happening. As we decended the clag suddenly cleared and we were treated to brilliantly white views of the route we'd taken up and of the hill itself. Various animal tracks (deer, hare, otter) traced outlines of their owners' journeys in the pristine snow. Getting back down to the track the views were once again dominated by the Pointy One. Reached the car in blazing sunshine and had a pleasant drive along the lochside back to the A9. A visit to Tiso's in Perth on the way home finished off the weekend nicely.

Claggy hillside
ImageP1050435 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Voyage of the deer
ImageP1050437 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Final stretch to the top
ImageP1050441 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050444 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050445 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050447 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Starting to clear
ImageP1050449 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050452 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050454 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Schiehallion again
ImageP1050455 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050456 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Looking back up to Chualliach - clear top now :wink:
ImageP1050457 by 23weasels, on Flickr

Tracks
ImageP1050458 by 23weasels, on Flickr

You guessed it...
ImageP1050462 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050464 by 23weasels, on Flickr

ImageP1050468 by 23weasels, on Flickr

stats
ImageP1050470 by 23weasels, on Flickr
User avatar
weaselmaster
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Re: Visions of Schiehallion - Kinloch Rannoch Corbetts

Postby rockhopper » Sun Jan 04, 2015 11:15 pm

A good use of the weekend for both of you :thumbup: certainly turned out somewhat better than looked like it would earlier last week. Think Schiehallion must've been stalking you :wink: - cheers :)
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rockhopper
 
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Re: Visions of Schiehallion - Kinloch Rannoch Corbetts

Postby weaselmaster » Sun Jan 04, 2015 11:25 pm

rockhopper wrote:A good use of the weekend for both of you :thumbup: certainly turned out somewhat better than looked like it would earlier last week. Think Schiehallion must've been stalking you :wink: - cheers :)


Cheers RH - yeah, originally it was predicting 10cm of snow on Saturday alone in this area. Two pretty nice days out
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weaselmaster
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Re: Visions of Schiehallion - Kinloch Rannoch Corbetts

Postby scoob999 » Mon Jan 05, 2015 8:32 am

Only the 2 eh!
give us a shout and we'll give you some tips :lol:

P.S you forgot your bikes for the first one :roll:
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scoob999
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Re: Visions of Schiehallion - Kinloch Rannoch Corbetts

Postby BlackPanther » Mon Jan 05, 2015 11:04 am

Certainly, this weekend was much better than forecast, though a bit more cloudy in the far north. We managed to bag a Corbett and a Graham :D

Nice to see summit panos from Ben Mholach and Beinn a'Chuillaich - we didn't get good views from either, due to low cloud. But they are definitely winter mountains.

I remember I tore my trousers on my bottom when trying to climb the Ben Mholach cairn :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
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BlackPanther
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Re: Visions of Schiehallion - Kinloch Rannoch Corbetts

Postby weaselmaster » Mon Jan 05, 2015 11:57 am

BlackPanther wrote:I remember I tore my trousers on my bottom when trying to climb the Ben Mholach cairn :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:


Oh I didn't get up to anything as challenging as that - just patted it :lol:
Was an impressive construction though, wonder who the cairnmakers were
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weaselmaster
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Re: Visions of Schiehallion - Kinloch Rannoch Corbetts

Postby Beaner001 » Mon Jan 05, 2015 5:30 pm

I wasn't far from you at the weekend Al, I did the Loch an Diamh Munros and the views were spectacular. Your starting the year as you mean to go on, well played :clap:
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Beaner001
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Re: Visions of Schiehallion - Kinloch Rannoch Corbetts

Postby kevsbald » Tue Jan 06, 2015 2:20 pm

Some very atmospheric shots there - still to do Chuallaich - the views to Schiehallion look tremendous.
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kevsbald
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Re: Visions of Schiehallion - Kinloch Rannoch Corbetts

Postby chickadee » Tue Jan 06, 2015 11:32 pm

Oh I love this, Schiehallion is one of my favourites and it's great to see it towering over! Lovely walk photos too, winter looks so pretty with the light and the snow.
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Re: Visions of Schiehallion - Kinloch Rannoch Corbetts

Postby weaselmaster » Wed Jan 07, 2015 9:10 am

chickadee wrote:Oh I love this, Schiehallion is one of my favourites and it's great to see it towering over! Lovely walk photos too, winter looks so pretty with the light and the snow.


Yes, Schiehallion is an impressive mountain - not that you get much sense of that going up the long back of the hill from E to W. Would be interesting to climb it from the west shoulder sometime
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weaselmaster
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