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Creag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh from the north

Creag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh from the north


Postby Clach Liath » Sat Mar 28, 2015 6:23 pm

Route description: Creag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh

Corbetts included on this walk: Creag Mac Ranaich, Meall an t-Seallaidh

Date walked: 21/03/2015

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As ever we did not make a particularly early start. We, John, Caroline and I arrived at Ledcharrie a little after 10.15am, but the daylight hours are plenty at this time of the year. There is plenty of parking on the verge just to the west of the farmstead.

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

A public footpath runs through the farmyard and continues south to intersect the route of an old railway line. We cut off some of the distance by heading east shortly after leaving the farmyard. It was OK though there was a stream and associated bogginess to jump over. But soon we were striding the gently rising but firm track continuing our eastward route. At one point a fence had been constructed across the track but we were able to step over this.

Relics of the old line remain including sheep creeps under the embankment and bridges over.

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

After about 1,500m the Ardchlyne Burn is crossed by a fairly substantial bridge and almost immediately after that there is a right hand turn into the woodland along a vehicle track that does not appear to have been used for years. Although close to the edge of the wood, it was quite dark and in places branches sagged over the way and we had to duck under them or sweep them away with our arms. This section did not take long and we soon emerged back out into the brightness.

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

Here we removed layers and had a quick snack. The day was gorgeous. The burn sparkled in the sun to our right and slipped over small waterfalls.

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

The track was quite dry but now rose a little more steeply for almost a further couple of kilometres. We would tackle Creag Mac Ranaich first. We broke away from the track just before the 450m contour line as shown on the map and followed the course of the stream to the side of the incipient crags. This brought about 300m of stiff climbing before the gradient eased a bit. Here we found a large patch of firm snow that made the going easier.

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

From there it was a straightforward 40m up to a cairn a little short of and below the 809m summit cairn. Caroline decreed it was time for lunch. Well it was 1pm so who were we to disagree. We sat down in the sun. The air was chilled but there was hardly a breath of wind so it was really rather pleasant.

The panorama from the west around to the north and then to the north east was stunning.

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

The arc took in Ben Lomond, Ben More and Stob Binnein, Ben Lui, Beinn Challum, Meall Glas, Sgiath Chuil, Meall Ghaordaidh, The Tarmachans, the Lawers Group and distant hills further to the east. Killin and the western end of Loch Tay were spread out below. Above only a little thin high cloud spoiled the blue of the sky. Voices drifted over from a couple who were sitting at the summit proper as we had our leisurely lunch.

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

I packed up and walked to other couple to disturb their peace and quiet. They had taken the route up from Lochearnhead and were debating whether or not to tackle Meall an t-Seallaidh, as was I. John and Caroline joined me.

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

Ben Vorlich and Stuc a’Chroin now came into view as did Creag Mac Ranaich’s south top and Meall an t-Seallaidh.

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

We strolled over the south top and then made a bee line for the col between the two Corbetts. Any descent off the west side of Creag Mac Ranaich is going to be steep and caution needs to be taken amongst the broken crags. But 40 minutes saw us down to the track that runs over the col.

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

The direct route to Meall an t-Seallaidh didn’t look great with large patches of snow in the shade. But Caroline fancied a bit of sport so she went that way. John and I trended to the south over the rough ground to pick up a ridge by spot height 695m. My idea of avoiding the heather and bog by following some large snow patches was soon ditched after my left leg disappeared up to my crotch and it took John and I a couple of minutes to dig me out as the leg was not for moving!

At the foot of the ridge John and I stopped for a quick snack. The ridge above was covered in snow. I lent John my ice axe for surety and he led the way kicking steps in the 100m of ascent as I followed. The snow was great, firm enough for the steps and not soft enough for the steps to collapse. Caroline had found this too and her direct route meant that she was at the top 15 minutes before us.

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

This summit was busier with the couple we had met earlier on Creag Mac Ranaich plus a few others. By now the wind had picked up a little, so we sheltered amongst some rocks just below the trig point and cairn to discuss the return route and for some more food.

The views here were as good as from Creag Mac Ranaich. Though we had lost Killin and Loch Tay we had gained Loch Earn. Ben More and Stob Binnein still dominated the western view.

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

We had thought about heading for the glen to the west. But the combination of rough ground and the snow did not appetise. We also did not fancy climbing over Cam Chreag and Meall an Fhiodhain as, in my case, after a long lay off from the hills I was now becoming a little weary. The way off from the col just before Cam Chreag did not look too bad. The snow at the top of the slope back to the glen to the east was soft enough to run down. But as it steepened it became harder. Any danger of me slipping was soon avoided by my leg (right this time) puncturing the surface and plunging knee deep into it! Having extricated myself we were quickly back down to the track. A couple of cyclists were there, one of whom we had overtaken on our way off the last hill.

We had one last look back at our second hill.

ImageCreag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh by Clach Liath, on Flickr

And returned the way we had come.


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User avatar
Clach Liath
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 504
Munros:44   Corbetts:71
Grahams:23   Donalds:34
Sub 2000:88   Hewitts:158
Wainwrights:117   
Joined: Sep 2, 2011
Location: Yorkshire
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Re: Creag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh from the nort

Postby rockhopper » Fri Apr 03, 2015 8:21 pm

Interesting way to approach these hills compared to coming in from Lochearnhead. Looks like you got a cracking day for them as well - cheers :)
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rockhopper
 
Posts: 6574
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Joined: Jun 1, 2009
Location: Glasgow

Re: Creag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh from the nort

Postby cozi » Sat Apr 04, 2015 7:34 am

Lovely pics Jamie. So this is what you get up to on your days off.
I see you have slightly altered your Munro tally too...maybe as to not frighten off more lowly tickers?
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cozi
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Location: Highlands

Re: Creag Mac Ranaich and Meall an t-Seallaidh from the nort

Postby onsen » Sat Apr 04, 2015 11:06 am

Fantastic views....enjoyable walk.
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onsen
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 272
Joined: Oct 10, 2012
Location: The Great Southern Land, Australia

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