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Water, Water everywhere

Water, Water everywhere

Postby Fife Flyer » Sun Jun 21, 2015 3:43 pm

Route description: A Ghlas Bheinn and the Falls of Glomach

Munros included on this walk: A' Ghlas-bheinn

Date walked: 19/06/2015

Time taken: 7 hours

Distance: 22 km

Ascent: 1600m

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Don't we love it when a plan comes together, however the plan for the weekend was changed and even then it all kind of went pear-shaped :lol: All will be revealed :wink:
I had booked myself into a B&B at Dornie with the intention of attending Seana's (basscadet) compleation on Beinn Sgritheall on 20th June. I saw this as a great opportunity to tackle the Sisters on Friday & then Sgritheall on Saturday, so the plan was all sorted.
Spanner in the works in the form of a leg injury sustained after my latest trip to the Cairngorms last Monday, I was in agony on Tuesday and could hardly walk, as the week progressed things really improved. I still wasn't confident about tackling the Sisters as that would be quite a long day, so I created plan B after studying the map, I hand picked A' Ghlas-bheinn as that looked like a nice easy day, even adding on the Falls of Glomach.
Arrived at the parking area in Morvich and the weather wasn't really playing ball, it certainly wasn't warm and there was a bit of fine drizzle. Set off with my jacket on and 2 layers underneath and after about 20 minutes I was overheating, the drizzle had stopped and it suddenly got much warmer, so it was down to baselayer.

ImageDSCF3364 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, The way ahead

ImageDSCF3365 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Good path initially with plenty of damp patches & puddles

ImageDSCF3366 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, One of the many gates ahead

ImageDSCF3369 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/,

ImageDSCF3372 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Everything is nice and green and growing rapidly

ImageDSCF3374 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Looking back

ImageDSCF3378 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Allt Choinneachain lower down

ImageDSCF3380 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Burns coming down the hillside

ImageDSCF3387 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, another burn

The way ahead was straight forward, just a matter of following the path which climbs very gently uphill. Once outwith the forested area the surrounding scenery changed to rolling grassy slopes, with numerous burns running off. One of the first things I noticed was how much wetter the ground underfoot was, maybe I have been spoilt recently as all my trips outdoors have been in the east. All the burns and rivers seemed to be fairly full of water, whereas in the east the burns are very low :o
Once I reached Gleann Choinneachain the Allt Choinneachain had to be crossed, this involved a bit of careful balancing.

ImageDSCF3383 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Allt Choinneachain, had to be crossed just below the waterfall

Once across the burn the gradient changed somewhat, the path kind of zig-zagged uphill to the bealach. On the way up to the bealach, the wind picked up a bit and the temperature dropped so it was back on with all the warmer stuff. Just above the bealach I stopped & put all the gear I had on earlier and it really did get quite miserable :( It is quite some time since I had walked in the clag and it is not what you could call fun :( The camera went in the rucksack as nobody really wants to see grey photo's with rain spots dotted all over.
Visibility was about 50m with a briskish breeze, felt more like November (again) than summer.
I was now following the route on my phone and I have to say that there seemed to be plenty of 'undulations' on the way to the summit. I was keeping an eye on the height progress on my watch so I had an idea when I would be getting close :lol:

ImageDSCF3392 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Looking down towards the bealach just before entering the clag, Loch a' Bhealaich

ImageDSCF3396 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, When this appeared out of the gloom it reminded me (just a tiny bit) of Skye & Am Basteir :lol:

ImageDSCF3397 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Wee lochan

ImageDSCF3398 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, summit cairn

For obvious reasons I didn't linger on the summit, views were non existent my main focus was trying to find the way down and pick up the path that would take me to Falls of Glomach. I found quite a well trodden path that was taking me down, however on checking my phone it was taking me in the wrong direction, so I traversed round in an attempt to pick up the WH route. Once I was happy I was back on track I started descending, however there was no obvious path that I could see through the mirk and it looked as if I was going to have to do some ascending and I definitely didn't fancy that. So I opted for a change of plan (again), I would turn left (NW) and avoid the ascent, this involved descending over very wet tufty grass which was interspersed with very small burns that were channeling all the excess water downhill. Whilst descending down the slope all of a sudden views appeared, so it was just a matter of getting my bearings and making a decision 8) I could see the path that would take me to Glomach probably about 1km away and due north of where I was, however there was a bit of planning to do before I could continue. I had a gully and a few burns to negotiate before I could start so I visually opted for what looked like the best route. By this point my feet were already sploshing inside my boots (shades of Skye again), I initially headed NE in an effort to minimise the descent/ascent of the gully and it wasn't very long before my feet were happily back on the well trodden terrain of a path :lol: :lol:
It was just a matter of following the path east (ish) towards the Falls of Glomach. The path itself was well established and in parts either had plenty of standing water or flowing water, I didn't bother with the usual water avoidance tactics and just ploughed on regardless :lol: One thing that is not in short supply on the way to the falls is cairns, there must be at least SIX, not quite sure why as you could hardly lose the path, even in zero visibility :roll:
There was even a cairn marking the spot where the WH route joins the path :lol:
The walk to the Falls seemed to take rather a long time and once I could see the Allt a' Ghlomaich from on high, I decided to leave my rucksack on one of the relatively dry rocks. I had a quick drink before setting off downhill with my camera. I was keeping an eye on the height on my watch & I guesstimated that the decent down to the viewing point of the Falls is about 300m, which in the miserable conditions is hardly going to put a smile on your face :lol:

ImageDSCF3431 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Allt a' Ghlomaich in the distance

ImageDSCF3400 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Allt a' Ghlomaich before it plunges 100's of metres

ImageDSCF3401 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, There it goes over the edge

Once at the bottom of the hill on the approach to the afore mentioned river, the path disappears, it would appear that everyone just makes their own way across to the viewing area, across the damp squidgy ground. I kept reminding myself this is summer and don't you forget it :lol:
Once I reached the Falls I followed the path down even further, I noticed that there were a number of different viewing options, I opted to follow the path as far as it could go, taking great care as the rocky surface was slippy :D
I took photo's from all the different viewing platforms, however due to the vegetation impeding the views it was nigh on impossible to get a decent photo of the whole of the waterfall in one shot :(

ImageDSCF3429 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Didn't see this on the way down!

ImageDSCF3427 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, The protruding rock providing the viewing platforms

ImageDSCF3405 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, First shot

ImageDSCF3407 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Second

ImageDSCF3410 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Third

ImageDSCF3420 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Fourth

ImageDSCF3426 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Slight zoom of rock that is getting a constant battering

ImageDSCF3424 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Close up

ImageDSCF3408 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, The water evetually ends up somewhere down there

After taking quite a few photo's it was time to sprint back up the hill to my rucksack - I wish. Having said that I did make quite good time getting back up the hill, a quick drink and it was the final part of the walk - back to the car. Surely nothing else could go wrong :lol: Oh yes it can :(
The path back past all the cairns didn't seem to take as long, which was a good thing, then the long slow descent began. Once again the path was easy to follow, wet in places and where the run offs have been added - dry.

ImageDSCF3434 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, path downhill

ImageDSCF3438 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, very substantial bridge

ImageDSCF3439 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, another water feature

Once across the wooden bridge the path becomes almost road like, not sure where vehicles would go if they utilised the large track? If you look closely at the map you will see Dorusduain Wood is littered with tracks and I wasn't prepared for this extra bit of navigation, I was expecting to follow the path/track back to where it forks on the way up :lol: :lol:
I was still navigating using my phone and the WH route, I came to a few junctions and went through a few gates and was still heading down and on course. However the next check of my phone revealed I was off course to the north, I must have missed a turning to the left. So I got my map out and decided on another change of plan, I would continue on the tarmac and eventually end up at the car albeit froma slightly different angle :lol: the walk along the tarmac was easy going and it gave my boots a bit of chance to dry out slightly.
The tarmac track was taking me back towards Morvich and would involve a slight doubling back to reach the car, but as I was making good progress it wasn't a problem and was probably quicker :lol:

ImageDSCF3444 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, an even more substantial bridge

ImageDSCF3442 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Water again

ImageDSCF3443 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, More

ImageDSCF3446 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Very small dwelling place

ImageDSCF3447 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, My detour took me past what looks like a deer farm

ImageDSCF3451 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, The boss of the deer farm

ImageDSCF3453 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Final water feature, River Croe

Whilst approaching Morvich Caravan Site I noticed my new form of transport on the horizon :lol:

ImageDSCF3452 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/, Parked

To sum up, an interesting day with one or two challenges, plenty of water features, disappointing weather (polite description), one or two changes of plan and the end result is my knee is jiggered again :(
The highlight of the day was my fish supper from Plockton :lol: :lol:

ImageDSCF3454 by https://www.flickr.com/photos/126167535@N05/,

PS: Apologies to Seanna (basscadet) and everyone else who attended the compleation, I was at Arnisdale until 1230 but no one turned up. The views were non existent and the way up looked rather damp. I wouldn't have walked as my knee was far too sore.
PPS: One good thing, I managed to beat Naismith's time again 8) 8)

Not sure when I will be out next, hope to see my GP this week :(
User avatar
Fife Flyer
Munro compleatist
Posts: 2389
Munros:195   Corbetts:47
Grahams:24   Donalds:50
Sub 2000:121   Hewitts:2
Joined: May 15, 2013
Location: Guess?

Re: Water, Water everywhere

Postby ancancha » Sun Jun 21, 2015 6:54 pm

A damp good read and good photos as usual :clap:
Looks like a tasty fish supper 8)
Hope the knee gets better soon.
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Munro compleatist
Posts: 989
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Grahams:1   Donalds:1
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Re: Water, Water everywhere

Postby basscadet » Mon Jun 22, 2015 2:57 pm

I could tell from your tone throughout that you didn't have a very good day, but your photos make it look quite nice - such a lush time of year, and the falls are always beautiful.. :)
Brought back some weird memories, as the last time I was at the falls of Glomach, the family dog jumped a stone, lost his footing and rolled over the edge into the abyss :( Was 30 years ago now, but still remembered :?
Sorry I missed you for the compleation as well - some major miscommunications there, as we went up from Suardalan, and you were at Arnisdale :lol: Helen managed to get a wee signal and got your text at the top, but it was 1PM by then, so too late. We missed you as despite the clag, a good day was had :D
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Joined: Dec 1, 2011
Location: Edinburgh

Re: Water, Water everywhere

Postby Fife Flyer » Mon Jun 22, 2015 6:52 pm

basscadet wrote:Sorry I missed you for the compleation as well - some major miscommunications there, as we went up from Suardalan, and you were at Arnisdale :lol: Helen managed to get a wee signal and got your text at the top, but it was 1PM by then, so too late. We missed you as despite the clag, a good day was had :D

No worries glad you had a good day, I didn't have signal in Arnisdale either and that is with Vodafone & O2 :(
User avatar
Fife Flyer
Munro compleatist
Posts: 2389
Munros:195   Corbetts:47
Grahams:24   Donalds:50
Sub 2000:121   Hewitts:2
Joined: May 15, 2013
Location: Guess?

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