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A day out - The Lawers Range: Part 1

A day out - The Lawers Range: Part 1


Postby teaandpies » Fri Aug 21, 2015 1:41 pm

Munros included on this walk: Beinn Ghlas, Ben Lawers, Meall a'Choire Leith, Meall Corranaich

Date walked: 16/08/2015

Time taken: 8.5 hours

Distance: 19 km

Ascent: 1685m

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Since Samantha had chucked her boots out after our Ben Chonzie trip (see unpublished report) we had to find a walk that had decent paths and wasn't boggy so she could wear her approach shoes :roll:

We had checked out videos of Ben Lawers on youtube and got a good idea of the ground and it looked decent and so it would prove.

We set out from Glasgow sometime in the 'ante meridiem' and swiftly made our way through the countryside to Loch Tay, a place we have visited a few times as a couple.
We got to Killin where there was a creppy scarecrow competition going on, some heavy Pagan stuff going here! From Killin the turn off for Ben Lawers isn't that far along the road and is signed posted so we didn't miss it :lol:

Perhaps slightly naive of us we were actually looking for a visitor centre and drove right past the car park up to the dam where we turned around and made our way back down to the car park. A quick check on the phone and we found out the thing had been knocked a couple of years back :?
This was an issue because Samantha has an issue with peeing outside and she was a bit upset. We wandered for a bit to find a hidden spot, not that easy in such a busy area. Once business was taken care off it was back to the car to get ready for the walk. While we were preparing 2 other cars had pulled up and ironically both car loads of people were looking for a visitor centre...perhaps it's time for Walkhighlands to remove the visitor centre from it's description?

The weather forecast all week had been saying it was going to be amazing and when we left Glasgow it was but once we arrived at the Lawers Range the rain had started :shock:

1.jpg
The hills looking cloudy


From the car park, through the gate going is easy for the first part of the walk through the nature reserve and soon we were exiting the reserve via another gate and from here the walk beings proper. The path is well trodden and firm with good drainage which was good because this meant no wet feet for Sam :wink:
Height is gained quickly with little effort, it's not very taxing at all really, the worst thing about the walk so far was the bloody wind and rain. So much for the cracking weather we were supposed to be having :roll:
As per nearly every walk I/we have done breakfast was not consumed before we leave the house, it's become a bit of a bad habit now having to stop fairly early on in he walk to eat but that's ok with me :lol:
The side of Beinn Ghlas is pretty exposed so finding shelter from the wind wasn't easy but we found a spot on a short steep rocky section to stop for a munch, as it happened it was only a few minutes walk short of the summit.

10.jpg
Looking back down the well trodden path

11.jpg
Looking down to Loch Tay


The summit was reached in no time at all. This is definitely the fasted summit I've reached so far in my hill walking. It's pretty underwhelming to be totally honest and I can see why a lot of people don't even know they have walked over a Munro to reach Ben Lawers :roll:

16.jpg
On top of Beinn Ghlas


We stood about the top for a minute or two for whatever reason but within that time a father and son arrived on the seen with the young lad bagging his first Munro. I did take the time to congratulate him but quickly follow that up with a verbal kick in the balls, "there're not all this easy"!
With that I turned my attention to Ben Lawers it's self. I was excited to get back among the bigger hills but the views of Ben Lawers were well, uninspiring to say the least. I liken to the views to an old relative that you visit but they don't have the common decency to reframe from smoking and you end up just talking to a cloud of reek for a couple of hours.

19.jpg
Ben Lawers...


We left Ghlas and made our way into the bealach trying to take out time because the weather was meant to be clearing up and be cloud free by noon. So we took a jolly along the path stopping to have a look at the other hills we could see.

23.jpg
Ben Lawers still hiding


Before we knew it we were climbing again and once over a couple of brows there was the top, as easy as that? Jeezo. The cloud broke for a few seconds just enough time for me to snap a quick picture of Samantha on the approach.

29.jpg
A wee cloud break


We arrived on the summit within 3 hours of starting our walk and the cloud back in place to spoil Samantha's first top 10 hill, ach well. You lose some and you, eh, lose some :(

We sat for about 10 minutes behind the trip point trying to get out of the biting wind hoping for a break in the clouds to get a taste of the views but it didn't happen. We spoke about what to do now, do we carry on to An Stuc or go home or walk the boring hills? Samantha left me with the decision and I decided to do to head for Meall Corranaith. As we were making our way down the rocky slope we were met by an absolute on rush of people. Is it 'Black Friday' on the hill or something? There were people in jeans and shirts carrying plastic bags for god sake, I felt slightly over dressed in my walking gear. What was worse was as soon as we stepped of the summit the cloud started to lift and within 5 minutes of us descending it had lifted completely :eh:

I was pretty confident these people wouldn't be heading where we were going next.

36.jpg
Meall Corranaich


And..

37.jpg
Meall a'Chorie Leith


We made our way down the bypass path which was easy going, as I looked back to Ben Lawers I got my first look at An Stuc as we didn't get to see it from Ben Lawers it's self.

38.jpg
Looking back to a cloud free with Ben Lawers & An Stuc


We soon found ourselves at the foot of our next Munro, it didn't look like that much of a hike up but before we started the short but steep climb we took on a little food.

39.jpg
A close up of Meall Corranaich


The climb up was fine a few scrambles but the weather was all over the place, at first we were being rained on then the sun came bursting out and we were now to warm so it was time for the jackets to come off...this stopping and starting is to become a theme for the rest of the walk.

45.jpg
Beinn Ghlas


Before you know it you are at the top of Meall Corranaith which has a large flat summit and a pretty flat cairn but somebody has taken the time to put up some prayer flags to give the summit a little personality.

49.jpg
Prayer flags on the summit of Meall Corranaith

56.jpg
The 3 summits so far in one shot


From the summit of Meall Corranaith the views of Meall nan Tarmachan are amazing and that hill looks massive, there just seems to be so much meat on it, I was quite taken by it and really wished I was walking it at this point. I was standing in the sunshine when I took the below photographs.

59.jpg
Meall nan Tarmachan with rain

60.jpg
Here comes a shower


We started our way to our next target but the jackets would have to get flung on again. The walk between the 2 Munros here is pretty straight forward and it's easy to pick of the other top of Meall Corranaith before dropping down to regain the path to Meall a'Chorie Leith.

61.jpg
Meall Corranaith's other top

63.jpg
Meall a'Chorie Leith


The pull up to the summit is harder that I thought it would be, I think all the assent we had done was catching up with me a wee bit here and I had to stop a few times on my way up. It didn't help that the path we were walking on was actually a narrow trench that made walking a bit harder. This hill is so rounded, I think the most rounded hill I've been on thus far.
From a distance we could see a group of about 5 people away ahead of us but once we reached the summit they had disappeared completely.
This was us on the summit of our fourth Munro for the day and we got there in about 6 hours.

72.jpg
All 4 summits we visited in 1 shot


I actually wanted to carry on and do the really uninspiring looking Corbett then drop down to the road and walk back to the car park that way but this didn't happen...

75.jpg
Meall nam Maigheach (Crobett)


We searched for a path off the hill but couldn't find one. Because of the shape of the hill if you start walking you can drop rapidly so before we descended too far we made the decision to walk back over Meall Corranaith and then down to the bypass path. So we set off and as we hit the bealach it was clear that the climb up was going to be longer than we thought, I didn't remember there being so much down hill as we made our way to Meall a'Chorie Leith :shock:

76.jpg
We were going to have to walk back up that :(


We stopped to take on our last food and as we did we could see the group of 5 making there way across the boggy looking ground between the Corbett and Corrie Gorm, so that's where they went!

We slowly made our way back up the slightly boggy first part of the path to try and gain as much height as we could but it just felt like it was an endless slog. I kept asking myself was this the way we came? Isn't funny how different a path is when walking it from the opposite direction?
Eventually we were back at the previous summit...Déjà vu! From here you can see the car park and all the cars glimmering in the sunshine but we knew we still had a good walk to get there. Dropping down to the by pass path was a bit of a killer on my knees (as I write this 6 days after the walk I'm still a little swollen in my right knee) but once on the path it's plain sailing down to the car park.
Once there was a family that were not out walking but must have just arrived and were a little upset as they had been expecting to find a visitor centre :lol:


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I really enjoyed our day out in the Lawers Range and I can see why it's so popular. I can't wait to return to pick up some of the remaining hills here. I hope that's sooner rather than later!




@teaandpies on instagram


(Walked with Samantha)
Last edited by teaandpies on Mon Oct 31, 2016 12:23 am, edited 2 times in total.
teaandpies
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Re: A day out - The Lawers Range: Part 1

Postby Alteknacker » Fri Aug 21, 2015 3:14 pm

Glad you got some decent weather in the end - really the main point of these hills is the fabulous views.

(I did them myself a couple of weeks ago, and had the good fortune to have excellent weather).

Pity you didn't get to An Stuc, which is quite a characterful hill. Mind you, if Samantha isn't a big hill bunny, then the descent of An Stuc towards Meall Garbh is probably quite an ask.

I didn't realise this was a popular bunch of hills - I met one person only on the Lawers ridge on what was a perfect walking day!!
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Re: A day out - The Lawers Range: Part 1

Postby teaandpies » Fri Aug 21, 2015 3:26 pm

Alteknacker wrote:Glad you got some decent weather in the end - really the main point of these hills is the fabulous views.

(I did them myself a couple of weeks ago, and had the good fortune to have excellent weather).

Pity you didn't get to An Stuc, which is quite a characterful hill. Mind you, if Samantha isn't a big hill bunny, then the descent of An Stuc towards Meall Garbh is probably quite an ask.

I didn't realise this was a popular bunch of hills - I met one person only on the Lawers ridge on what was a perfect walking day!!


I read your report...puts mine to shame. I actually forgot to check the box to not post this publically :roll:

I left An Stuc on purpose to do the easier 2. Hopefully return to do the other 3 along from Lawers and do Part 2 of the report 8)
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Re: A day out - The Lawers Range: Part 1

Postby ancancha » Fri Aug 21, 2015 3:31 pm

Sounds like you both got some fun from the hills this time, so glad 8)
Haven't done the scramble up to Meall Corranaith as you did, sounds like fun though :D
I can certainly say that you and Samantha will have been very very glad to have gone back to Meall Corranaith and back to the car park that way :!:
Had you come off Meall a'Chorie Leith to the west and across the very boggy ground and saturated peat hags another Glaswegian salute would certainly have been provoked :lol:
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Re: A day out - The Lawers Range: Part 1

Postby teaandpies » Fri Aug 21, 2015 3:54 pm

ancancha wrote:Sounds like you both got some fun from the hills this time, so glad 8)
Haven't done the scramble up to Meall Corranaith as you did, sounds like fun though :D
I can certainly say that you and Samantha will have been very very glad to have gone back to Meall Corranaith and back to the car park that way :!:
Had you come off Meall a'Chorie Leith to the west and across the very boggy ground and saturated peat hags another Glaswegian salute would certainly have been provoked :lol:


It's not much of a scramble just a couple of wee tricky bits but it offers some nice views to Beinn Ghlas where we spotted an alternative path up to the top of it.

I knew by looking at the ground it looked boggy but I really wanted to nab that wee Corbett. The walk back over Meall Corranaith felt like we were doing a 5th Munro but without the reward so the effort spent doing that could have been better put to use but hey.

That Glasgow salute was something I seen done by another walker from Glasgow (RoscoT) on this site and he was giving it to Ben More I think :lol:
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Re: A day out - The Lawers Range: Part 1

Postby roscoT » Mon Aug 24, 2015 6:45 pm

Well done dude - great walk!
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Re: A day out - The Lawers Range: Part 1

Postby teaandpies » Mon Aug 24, 2015 10:57 pm

roscoT wrote:Well done dude - great walk!


Yeah, this was a cracking day out. With a bit of better planning you could really do a lot of great walking there. You have done a couple of them haven't ya?

A bit frustrated about missing out on the views from Lawers but I'll be returning so hopefully catch them then :thumbup:
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