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A spectacular day on the Little Shepherd

A spectacular day on the Little Shepherd


Postby dbogosian » Sun Sep 20, 2015 3:33 pm

Route description: Buachaille Etive Beag

Munros included on this walk: Stob Coire Raineach (Buachaille Etive Beag), Stob Dubh (Buachaille Etive Beag)

Date walked: 11/09/2015

Time taken: 7 hours

Distance: 10 km

Ascent: 900m

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I tried this walk on a recommendation from someone I'd encountered by chance the previous day in Lairig Gartain, and I'm ever so glad I did.

I used the standard route as described on this site: from the A82 car park, up the Lairig Eilde, and then straight up the flanks of Buachaille Etive Beag. The path is very clear, and the nearly-vertical ascent up the side, while very steep indeed, is along a well-constructed set of stone steps.
P1180641.JPG


As you climb, you get a great view of the Aonach Eagach, daring you to approach!
P1180651.JPG


After reaching the saddle point (bealach?), you think you've done the worst of it, but no, there's worse yet to come. I opted to go south first, to the Stob Dubh summit which is the larger and also longer to reach. At first there is a steep climb to an intermediate summit, and then a ridge walk that in truth looks a lot worse than it is. The day was very windy, I'm guessing 40-50 mph, and I was half-concerned of getting blown off the mountain, but at no point is the ridge narrow enough to cause true concern.
P1180673.JPG


Once at the true summit of Stob Dubh, the view is unreal. The Lairig Gartain way down below, on your left:
P1180692.JPG


Buachaille Etive Mor and the Stob Coire Raineach to the north and east:
P1180689.JPG


Loch Etive off in the distance to the south:
P1180710.JPG


After backtracking down to the bealach, now I had to climb the Stob Coire Raineach on the north side to bag my second Munro of the day. This was an even steeper climb, and the path here is very indistinct. There are bits of path here and there, but most of the time you are left to your own devices. It's not nearly as sharp-looking a ridge as the one to the south, though. Once near the top, you get a great view back to the south of the Stob Dubh and its smaller pretender in front of it:
P1180694.JPG


Then from the summit, the world is yours. Best view perhaps is the one to Buachaille Etive Mor, and also the broad flanks of Beinn a Chrulaiste to the left, which had defeated me (due to high winds) the prior day!
P1180706.JPG


And in the end, this is what happens at the summit cairn, when your camera's self-timer has a 10-second delay, but you really needed a 12-second delay:
P1180702.JPG


Altogether a fantastic day, and I'm ever so grateful to the anonymous person who told me to take this route. It's vertically quite challenging, but the rewards are well worth the exertion, and the path is easily followed for the most part. Even in windy conditions, this was a great day out.

And last of all, I believe this is a view of the summit of Ben Nevis to the north, but would appreciate confirmation from those with greater experience:
P1180713.JPG
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dbogosian
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 56
Munros:10   Corbetts:1
Grahams:2   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:2   Hewitts:2
Joined: Apr 23, 2015
Location: Glendale, California, USA

Re: A spectacular day on the Little Shepherd

Postby dogplodder » Sun Sep 20, 2015 4:25 pm

I agree - it's a great walk with a fantastic path. Good to see the views again. :D
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dogplodder
 
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Re: A spectacular day on the Little Shepherd

Postby Silverhill » Sun Sep 20, 2015 7:39 pm

A great hill, which I enjoyed very much! The views in all directions are fabulous. You indeed saw Ben Nevis. 8)
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Re: A spectacular day on the Little Shepherd

Postby Huff_n_Puff » Sun Sep 20, 2015 8:10 pm

Lovely report, it's an enjoyable mountain but sadly I made its acquaintance in wind and rain so I really appreciate your photos :clap: :clap:
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Huff_n_Puff
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Re: A spectacular day on the Little Shepherd

Postby dbogosian » Sun Sep 20, 2015 8:25 pm

Silverhill wrote:A great hill, which I enjoyed very much! The views in all directions are fabulous. You indeed saw Ben Nevis. 8)


Appreciate the confirmation.


Huff_n_Puff wrote:I made its acquaintance in wind and rain so I really appreciate your photos 8)


Wind I had plenty of, but mercifully no rain. I admire you for plodding on to the top, without having the view as a reward and incentive!
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dbogosian
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 56
Munros:10   Corbetts:1
Grahams:2   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:2   Hewitts:2
Joined: Apr 23, 2015
Location: Glendale, California, USA

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