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The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon


Postby Huff_n_Puff » Sun Mar 22, 2015 1:38 pm

Route description: Sgòrr Ruadh, Achnashellach

Munros included on this walk: Sgòrr Ruadh

Date walked: 18/03/2015

Time taken: 7.5 hours

Distance: 14.75 km

Ascent: 930m

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We owe a big 'thank you' to Mountainboy12 and MrsScoob for this trip, especially for their stunning photos that showed us the current conditions in Torridon. :clap: :clap: :clap: ...

... There I was, idling around the WH forum reading reports and wondering where might be a good destination for our next Munro a couple of days later, when I chanced on their reports from Maol Chean Dearg (Montain boy) and Beinn Eighe (Mrs S). What excited me was how dry and snowless Torridon seemed – not that I object to snow but I wasn't fancying trying my luck against a river in spate :roll: What we fancied was a trip up Sgorr Ruadh, but had relegated it to later in the year when the snow melt was over and the River Lair wouldn't be an obstacle. Looked like the trip could happen now !! (With an option on Fuar Tholl if we were feeling fit or a trip round the Easan Dorcha circuit if the river really wan't crossable.)

Who could resist the temptations of a day in Torridon :-P :-P

So off we set … and after an unplanned detour by Muir of Ord (habit and not looking at the map :shock: ) arrived at the wee car park just opposite the track leading to Achnashellach station. A couple of minuets later a car pulled up alongside us, 4 guys got out, booted up and were off. At a more leisurely pace we also booted up, got the dogs under control and headed for the station. The weather was having a tease – the forecasts were excellent but there was plenty of high level cloud that should have gone by 9:30 :roll:

Heading up the path from the station
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We headed up the tack and soon overtook the 4 guys in front – they were up for a hill bagging week from London and had certainly booked some good weather, they too were aiming for Sgorr Ruadh. We pretty quickly established a pattern of criss-crossing each other's footsteps as we took turns with the photo shoots, refuelling breaks and rest stops.

Beinn Laith Mhor comes into view
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then Sgorr Ruadh itself
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Bribing the dogs to be patient :lol: :lol:
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The path to the River Lair is very good, but before we reached the river we were pretty sure there'd be no problems – the area was much drier than it had been 3 months earlier when we last passed this way.

Heading for the River Lair, the London walkers in front of us
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True enough none of us had any difficulty getting across and we were soon heading up the path towards the bealach between Fuar Tholl and Sgorr Ruadh.

Sgorr Ruadh with the morning sun behind
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The summits of Sgorr Ruadh and Beinn Laith Mhor
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Reflections ...
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The path passes very close to Fuar Tholl so we had plenty of opportunity to admire this sunning mountain – it's beautiful. No way were we going to insult it by adding it onto a trip up its larger sibling – this hill merits a day all to itself. (Please note: this feeling was not influenced in the slightest by my lack of fitness, suspect back or any other such trivia :lol: )

The sun coming over the flank of Fuar Tholl with the Mainnrichean Buttress in the centre
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Mainnrichean Buttress again
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There were enough snow patches for us not to notice any path leading off to the right towards Sgorr Ruadh, so we followed the path until we hit the top of the ridge, wondering if we were going to accidentally end up on Fuar Tholl after all :lol: :lol: Still this gave us more time for photos :lol:

Route to the summit of Sgorr Ruadh
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We negotiated a way round the humps, bumps and lochans that populate this very wide bealach before hitting the final steep pull up to the summit – with the amazing Torridon landscape opening up around us. The wind proved remarkably strong as we got to the ridge, but it eased off as we got higher – on the summit it was no more than a gentle, warm breeze.

Humps, bumps and a lochan
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Maol Chean-dearg and An Rhuadh-stac
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An Rhuadh-stac and the Applecross hills (I think - please correct me if I'm wrong)
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At the top we chatted to someone who had come over from Beinn Liath Mhor and was heading for Fuar Tholl – a hard trip and I'm full of admiration, but happy to do things at my own (snail's) pace.

Fuar Tholl from the summit (one of the London walkers just heading up the last slope)
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There was a lot of time spent taking photos and generally lapping up the views before getting down to the more serious business of eating. B&B were more than happy to find 7 people having lunch in such a small area – sorry guys :roll:

Beinn Laith Mhor
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Looking south west towards Loch Carron
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Beinn Alligin
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The mighty Liathach and Beinn Eighe - forming a wonderful wall
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Maol Chean-dearg and Beinn Damh
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Summit pics... (Bertie keen to be off scrounging someone else's lunch ... :? )
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Having seen the layout of the land from the top we took a more efficient route back across the beallach towards the path down. I really enjoyed this stretch – the weather had been improving all day and it was now mild and sunny.

Heading down; Fuar Tholl looking even more tempting - but not for today
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Snow wall
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The mix of humps, bumps and lochans was great fun to navigate. The dogs disturbed a ptarmigan at one point but the wise bird simply flew off to the safety of an ice covered lochan.

Spot the ptarmigan
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Family group
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Looking east over Strath Carron
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More reflections - Biggles getting in on the act :D
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Once back on the path there were no obstacles and the River Lair was just as easy going home.

Crossing the Lair
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Just as we were coming to the end of the route Biggles disappeared – when we spotted him he was tucking into some booty a hundred meters or so from the path. Nothing short of an arrest was going to part him from his meal – so Roger duly arrested him and frogmarched him back. The booty was well matured and it says something for spaniels' digestive systems that he wasn't very sick !!

Back at the car park we bid farewell to the London walkers and we headed off – very happy to have given into to the temptations of Torridon – and even happier that they are only an hour and a half from home. :D :D I can feel the temptation of Fuar Tholl luring us back :lol: :lol:
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby litljortindan » Sun Mar 22, 2015 2:20 pm

Great stuff. What a spell of weather there's been. Great to be so close to the north west hills.

Quite enjoyed my recent train journey to Achnasheen so will maybe give Achnashellach a go this year. Haven't been in this area since 1993 I think so time for a return.
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby AnnieMacD » Sun Mar 22, 2015 3:04 pm

What a fabulous outing and photos to prove it! I love Coire Lair and plan on doing this one again this year - on its own. I did the double of BLM and SR but I find I enjoy the hills a lot more when I dedicate a day to each one!
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby Gordie12 » Sun Mar 22, 2015 5:20 pm

That looked brilliant - I haven't done any Munros so far this year but this just could be my first one.

Thanks for posting.
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby Beaner001 » Sun Mar 22, 2015 5:53 pm

Super report and pics, jeez I'm starting to feel the pull from Torridon too now :lol:
Spaniels are trying to be the new labs with lead lined tummies, my two got hold of a sheep carcass today, I'm not out of the woods yet but no dodgy stomachs as yet :lol:
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby Alteknacker » Sun Mar 22, 2015 9:19 pm

Great pics of a fine, fine place. I particularly like the panorama of Beinn Eighe and Liathach. Torridon is a place to return to again and again...
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby Huff_n_Puff » Sun Mar 22, 2015 10:10 pm

litljortindan wrote:Great stuff. What a spell of weather there's been. Great to be so close to the north west hills.

Quite enjoyed my recent train journey to Achnasheen so will maybe give Achnashellach a go this year. Haven't been in this area since 1993 I think so time for a return.
You're right, it's a real privilege to live so near these hills. I hope you get a great time out on the rail trip to Achnashellach - there are lots of options for you and a very relaxing way to arrive!

AnnieMacD wrote:What a fabulous outing and photos to prove it! I love Coire Lair and plan on doing this one again this year - on its own. I did the double of BLM and SR but I find I enjoy the hills a lot more when I dedicate a day to each one!
Thanks Annie - some hills are fine in groups, but these Torridon hills are so complex that they deserve more individual attention - enjoy your next visit :D

Gordie12 wrote:That looked brilliant - I haven't done any Munros so far this year but this just could be my first one.

Thanks for posting.
Thanks Gordie - this hill will definitely repay the journey north. It's magic :D :D

Beaner001 wrote:Super report and pics, jeez I'm starting to feel the pull from Torridon too now :lol:
Spaniels are trying to be the new labs with lead lined tummies, my two got hold of a sheep carcass today, I'm not out of the woods yet but no dodgy stomachs as yet :lol:
Perhaps we'll meet you in Torridon yet :D Hope the doggy stomachs last the night - sometimes I can't believe what they'll eat, roll in or even give me as pressies :lol: :lol:

Alteknacker wrote:Great pics of a fine, fine place. I particularly like the panorama of Beinn Eighe and Liathach. Torridon is a place to return to again and again...
You're right - once is not enough :lol: :lol: Seriously I can't believe how lucky I am to live so near.
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby The Rodmiester » Sun Mar 22, 2015 10:25 pm

That looks another wonderful day on the hills, superb.
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby Huff_n_Puff » Sun Mar 22, 2015 11:27 pm

The Rodmiester wrote:That looks another wonderful day on the hills, superb.
After years of having to go to work on what looked like brilliant hill days I'm really glad working life is behind me :lol: :lol: on a day like that I still feel like a kid truanting though :lol:
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby Petr Dakota » Sun Mar 22, 2015 11:39 pm

Beautiful pictures from beautiful area :clap: :clap: :clap: Can't wait to go there this year...very looking forward ! :D Hope I will be lucky with the weather as I am planning to do Torridon , especially Liathach as my M100...need good timing for it :roll: :) 8) hoping... :D Thank you for this report :clap:
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby brunellus » Mon Mar 23, 2015 1:31 am

Huff_n_Puff wrote:We owe a big 'thank you' to Mountainboy12 and MrsScoob for this trip, especially for their stunning photos that showed us the current conditions in Torridon.

Thanks to you in turn! And indeed to everyone who's been posting recently. I'm off on Saturday to spend a week in Kintail, but I'm also planning an excursion to Torridon to take some friends up Beinn Alligin, which is probably my favourite mountain. We're not winter walkers, though, so I'm keeping an eye on the snow line, and it's incredibly useful to be able to see photos of the conditions on the ground, rather than trying to guess what's going on from the weather forecasts. Much appreciated!
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby BlackPanther » Mon Mar 23, 2015 9:31 am

Torridon, Torridon... Always so tempting. Lovely photos of one of my fav corries :D

I think you have the right attitude, picking hills one by one, rather than rushing through them! Certainly in this corner of Scotland! We have taken 3 separate trips to Corie Lair to climb each mountain and enjoyed it every time :D SR we did in full winter conditions, but didn't see much from the summit due to cloud... The hill is asking for a repeat :lol:
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby Huff_n_Puff » Mon Mar 23, 2015 3:08 pm

Petr Dakota wrote:Beautiful pictures from beautiful area :clap: :clap: :clap: Can't wait to go there this year...very looking forward ! :D Hope I will be lucky with the weather as I am planning to do Torridon , especially Liathach as my M100...need good timing for it :roll: :) 8) hoping... :D Thank you for this report :clap:
Liathach as your 100th what an excellent choice, I'm sure you'll enjoy it :D :D thanks for the kind comments and enjoy Torridon :D
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby kev_russ » Mon Mar 23, 2015 3:44 pm

Stunning as per usual from ya 8) :clap:
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Re: The Irresistable Temptations of Torridon

Postby Mal Grey » Mon Mar 23, 2015 5:37 pm

Lovely blog, and great to see folk fully appreciating the beauty of the surroundings.

Coire Lair and its 3 mountains is one of my favourite places in the world. I've done them all, one by one and together, and hope to return again many times. There's just something about the place.
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