walkhighlands

Share your personal walking route experiences in Scotland, and comment on other peoples' reports.
Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.

A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman


Postby jupe1407 » Sun May 24, 2015 12:29 pm

Route description: Buachaille Etive Mor

Munros included on this walk: Stob Dearg (Buachaille Etive Mor), Stob na Broige (Buachaille Etive Mor)

Date walked: 23/05/2015

Time taken: 7.5 hours

Distance: 13.5 km

Ascent: 1254m

2 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).

With a good (probably) forecast on the cards for most of Saturday, I wisely decided to head through to Glencoe for the weekend to escape the horrors of Eurovision. Finished work early on Friday, which is always a good feeling and headed through via the horrors of Perth's atrocious road network, then Crieff. I had toyed with the idea of a quick single up Ben Chonzie on the way, but give it was a Friday with decent weather in prospect, I just headed straight to Glencoe to make sure i got a decent space at the Red Squirrel campsite. This turned out to be a sensible decision, as by 8pm to the place was packed.

After a laughably bad portion of supernoodles for tea, I thought i'd head along the road for a wee wander. It was a lovely evening with some nice light on Sgor nam Fiannaidh, which only served to highlight how horrible the Clachaig Gully descent must be :lol:

BEM-11-4.jpg
Clachaig Gully & Sgor nam Fiannaidh


I continued along the road, resisting the temptation to have a pint in the Clachaig and followed the River Coe along as I'm sure i'd spotted a couple of nice spots for photos on the way in.

BEM-2.jpg
A look up Glencoe, AE on the the left


There was indeed a cracking waterfall just beyond the turn off to the Clachaig, it had a fair bit of force behind it, probably snow melt etc making it's way off the hills.

BEM-3.jpg
River Coe Waterfall


I walked about a mile back towards the campsite before realising I'd left the car keys sitting on a rock beside the waterfall. *facepalm* Still, it was a nice night and a good leg stretcher. Got back to the even-busier campsite which had a near blanket of smoke from the various fires, had a quick shower, and settled down for a crap sleep in the tent.

The following morning looked great. Blue skies, with little wind 8) I packed up and headed up the road, having decided I'd tackle the full Buachaille Etive Mor ridge, as my previous visit in 2013 for SCoob and Fi's brilliant compleation day, I'd only done Stob Dearg and headed back down the Corrie. I parked up at Altnafeadh, happily getting a spot on the roadside layby, rather than risking the sump-tearing car park across the road, a scene of much amusement (and probably a garage visit or two) on Scoob and Fi's day.

I hummed and hayed for a while, as I could see a bank of snow at the top of Coire na Tulaich. In the end I decided to go for it anyway. If it was too dodgy, I'd come back and do something else on the way home. It was a glorious morning, and virtually everyone seemed to be heading for Curved Ridge. I'd have been tempted had my fitness not been atrociously poor.

BEM-4.jpg
Stob Dearg & Coire na Tulaich


BEM-5.jpg
Looking down towards the wee Buachaille


I made my way up at a half decent pace, enjoying the brief respites of shade in the Corrie, and taking plenty of photo stops/rests. The views were great higher up.

BEM-6.jpg
Nevis Range and the Mamores from the upper part of Coire na Tulaich


Near the final steep section, I joined another John, a fine lad from Aberdeen who also intended to do the full ridge. We had to dodge the path on a few bits due to dodgy-looking snow cover, and compared our mutual dislike of loose and steep scree. We rejoined the path on the final scrambly section, and met the snowy bank. Having earlier seen someone safely exit the Corrie, using helpfully deep footsteps we headed up with no difficulties, although once on the top, didn't spend too long standing about on the massive cornice for obvious reasons :lol:

The views were fantastic from here.

BEM-7.jpg
Stob "Why am I not a Munro" na Doire


BEM-8.jpg
The cornice, the Corrie and the distant hills of the Mamores, Nevis and Grey Corries


From the Bealach it's a fairly easy stroll up a gentle incline to the fabulous summit of Stob Dearg and it's glorious view across the vast expanse of Rannoch Moor and beyond. What a place.

BEM-10.jpg
From Stob Dearg's Summit


After a bite to eat and the admiration of the jaw-dropping views, we got moving back down to the bealach and along to Stob Na Doire, debating (as presumably almost everyone does) how on earth it can't be a separate Munro. The ascent looked quite depressing as we knew there was a tonne of height to lose over it's other side. As it turn's out, the climb wasn't horrible, however the steep, rocky and seemingly never-ending descent was not much fun, and my dodgy knee was playing up. It was a relief to reach the relatively serene ridge leading up to Stob Coire Altruim, picking out the descent path to the Lairig Gartain on the way. We stopped at the wee cairn on Altrium to don a layer as the sun had gone, with a strong wind now on the scene. A total contrast to earlier conditions. It was also a nice spot to look back along at the day's walk so far.

BEM-11.jpg
Stob Dearg and Stob na Broige from Stob Coire Altruim


After this, it's a fairly short walk along a nice ridge on mildly undulating terrain, with a very short pull up to the summit of Stob na Broige. The views weren't great as the sky was overcast. We did however spy a totally bizarre bit of cloud action back on Stob Dearg, hopefully visible on the photo:

BEM-12.jpg
Weird Clouds


There's no doubt a sensible, technical reason for this, but it looked pretty cool, almost as if the cloud was being thrown against the mountain. I hadn't seen anything like it before.

After a most welcome cheese piece, it was time to head back along the ridge, and find the marker cairn for what promised to be a soul-destroying descent back to the Lairig Gartain. I could hardly flex my knee by this point, so it wasn't the greatest experience I've had in the hills, to say the least :lol: Steep, rocky and wet in places. There was also an unexpected but quite cool scrambly bit which ran alongside a nice waterfall.

BEM-14.jpg
The Descent


Thankfully we were soon at the floor of the Lairig Gartain, following the half decent path out, over a handful of stream crossings, back to the incredibly busy A82 and a mildly hairy walk along the roadside back to the car.

This was a fine day, with a hugely enjoyable ridgewalk out to the second munro, after sensational views from the first. A truly wonderful mountain.
Attachments

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

User avatar
jupe1407
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1256
Munros:225   Corbetts:14
Grahams:6   
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: May 15, 2012
Location: Forfar

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby Fife Flyer » Sun May 24, 2015 1:27 pm

Nice one JP, some superb photo's :clap: :clap:

We must have gone past you/your car on our way to Kinlochleven, Glencoe was certainly a busy place :wink:
User avatar
Fife Flyer
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 2282
Munros:141   Corbetts:46
Grahams:35   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:82   Hewitts:2
Joined: May 15, 2013
Location: Guess?

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby jupe1407 » Sun May 24, 2015 1:29 pm

Fife Flyer wrote:Nice one JP, some superb photo's :clap: :clap:

We must have gone past you/your car on our way to Kinlochleven, Glencoe was certainly a busy place :wink:


Thanks Martin.

You probably did, a clapper of a old green Megane :lol:

The glen was hoaching on Friday afternoon. Coach parties all over the shop.
User avatar
jupe1407
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1256
Munros:225   Corbetts:14
Grahams:6   
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: May 15, 2012
Location: Forfar

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby simon-b » Sun May 24, 2015 9:35 pm

A good one, JP. Nice to know this year's long lasting snow didn't cause too much of a problem.
User avatar
simon-b
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1881
Munros:282   Corbetts:28
Grahams:7   Donalds:12
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:156
Wainwrights:214   
Joined: Jan 2, 2012
Location: Wakefield, West Yorkshire

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby rockhopper » Sun May 24, 2015 11:21 pm

Great set of photos as usual :thumbup: Good day for it - cheers :)
User avatar
rockhopper
 
Posts: 6148
Munros:282   Corbetts:181
Grahams:58   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:8   Hewitts:2
Wainwrights:3   
Joined: Jun 1, 2009
Location: Glasgow

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby AnnieMacD » Mon May 25, 2015 12:52 am

Fantastic photos - love the one of the amazing cloud particularly but they are all wall-worthy. Hope your knee is better and you'll be back on the hills soon.
User avatar
AnnieMacD
Walker
 
Posts: 789
Munros:25   Corbetts:15
Grahams:13   
Sub 2000:8   
Joined: Jun 25, 2013
Location: Applecross

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby jupe1407 » Mon May 25, 2015 8:22 am

rockhopper wrote:Great set of photos as usual :thumbup: Good day for it - cheers :)


Thanks Rockhopper. It was a terrific day and good to be walking in decent weather after my previous few attempts :lol:

AnnieMacD wrote:Fantastic photos - love the one of the amazing cloud particularly but they are all wall-worthy. Hope your knee is better and you'll be back on the hills soon.


Thanks Annie, that cloud formation was truly strange. :lol:

simon-b wrote:A good one, JP. Nice to know this year's long lasting snow didn't cause too much of a problem.


Thanks Simon ... Yeah there was only that one patch at the top of Coire na Tulaich, i suspect it won't last long if the temperatures stay reasonable.
User avatar
jupe1407
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1256
Munros:225   Corbetts:14
Grahams:6   
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: May 15, 2012
Location: Forfar

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby spiderwebb » Mon May 25, 2015 9:52 am

Great pics of a great walk there JP, that snow is hanging on :D
User avatar
spiderwebb
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 1476
Munros:93   Corbetts:15
Grahams:3   Donalds:1
Hewitts:108
Wainwrights:68   
Joined: May 18, 2011
Location: Miltonduff, Elgin

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby skuk007 » Mon May 25, 2015 8:03 pm

I loved this walk when I did it a while back, one of my favourites by a long way.
Looks like we did the exact same route almost.
Your excellent photos are bringing back those memories, thanks :)
User avatar
skuk007
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 1419
Munros:44   
Hewitts:8
Wainwrights:16   
Joined: Aug 24, 2009
Location: Bristol

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby Mal Grey » Tue May 26, 2015 3:30 pm

Excellent photos indeed.

BEM was my first Munro at the age of 12, and we did the other summits too. However, I've developed a slight niggling doubt about whether we went all the way to Stob na Broige. I think we did, as I do remember coming back on ourselves to the descent path, but I'll have to go back sometime just in case.
User avatar
Mal Grey
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 2736
Munros:110   Corbetts:20
Grahams:8   
Sub 2000:3   Hewitts:113
Wainwrights:71   
Joined: Dec 1, 2011
Location: Surrey, probably in a canoe! www.wildernessisastateofmind.co.uk

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby jepsonscotland » Tue May 26, 2015 9:43 pm

Nice one JP. :clap:
Great day for all of us, I think. 8)
Cracking photos, as always! :D :D

Chris
User avatar
jepsonscotland
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 331
Munros:282   Corbetts:8
Grahams:1   Donalds:2
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:1
Wainwrights:1   
Joined: Jan 2, 2014
Location: Broughty Ferry

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby jupe1407 » Tue May 26, 2015 10:05 pm

jepsonscotland wrote:Nice one JP. :clap:
Great day for all of us, I think. 8)
Cracking photos, as always! :D :D

Chris


Thanks Chris. A rare lucky weather day so far for me :lol:

Mal Grey wrote:Excellent photos indeed.

BEM was my first Munro at the age of 12, and we did the other summits too. However, I've developed a slight niggling doubt about whether we went all the way to Stob na Broige. I think we did, as I do remember coming back on ourselves to the descent path, but I'll have to go back sometime just in case.


Thanks Mal

The second Munro's ascent isn't much once you're on the relatively easy going of Stob Coire Altruim. Also has a decent sized shelter cairn.
User avatar
jupe1407
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1256
Munros:225   Corbetts:14
Grahams:6   
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: May 15, 2012
Location: Forfar

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby LeithySuburbs » Tue May 26, 2015 10:46 pm

Oh, I must have just missed you at the top of stob dearg. I went up north buttress on Saturday, which was a stunning route 8) .
User avatar
LeithySuburbs
Ambler
 
Posts: 1905
Munros:252   Corbetts:50
Grahams:26   Donalds:33
Sub 2000:40   Hewitts:14
Wainwrights:23   
Joined: Feb 19, 2009
Location: The Capital

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby basscadet » Tue May 26, 2015 11:01 pm

Oh you're all a bunch of bams for getting out, on the best day for weeks whilst I was stuck at home :sick: :lol:
User avatar
basscadet
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 2779
Munros:84   Corbetts:52
Grahams:18   Donalds:8
Sub 2000:33   Hewitts:13
Wainwrights:17   
Joined: Dec 1, 2011
Location: Edinburgh

Re: A Wonderful Return to the Great Herdsman

Postby jupe1407 » Wed May 27, 2015 8:26 am

LeithySuburbs wrote:Oh, I must have just missed you at the top of stob dearg. I went up north buttress on Saturday, which was a stunning route 8) .


Just googled that. It looks quite sensational :D

basscadet wrote:Oh you're all a bunch of bams for getting out, on the best day for weeks whilst I was stuck at home :sick: :lol:


Sorry, it was cr*p. Honest :lol:
User avatar
jupe1407
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1256
Munros:225   Corbetts:14
Grahams:6   
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: May 15, 2012
Location: Forfar

2 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).
Next



Walkhighlands community forum is now advert free

We need help to keep the site online.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by setting up a monthly donation by direct debit?



Return to Walk reports - Scotland

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: quagga64 and 38 guests