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Monadhliath- 3 gentle giants invite for a lovely day

Monadhliath- 3 gentle giants invite for a lovely day


Postby Mountainlove » Wed Sep 30, 2015 9:57 am

Route description: Carn Dearg, Carn Sgulain and A'Chailleach

Munros included on this walk: A' Chailleach (Monadhliath), Carn Dearg (Monadhliath), Carn Sgulain

Date walked: 30/09/2015

Time taken: 7.5 hours

Distance: 25.7 km

Ascent: 1152m

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It was just after 8am when I arrived at the small car park. The sky was overcast and a few low morning clouds visible in the valley ahead of me. Quite a large number of midges confused me (what are they doing out end of September?) and made sure I didn't lingered too long. Glen Banchor is lovely even during an overcast day and walking off I marveled at the sights on the way.
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The view from the car park

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Buildings from the old settlement

The quiet morning was interrupted, when a dog loudly barking, ran towards me and only stopped when the owner appeared and apologized profoundly. Staying for a wee chat, he told me that I might have to cover my ears when I reached the farmer who was getting the sheep off the hills, as he is known for his 'fruitful' language. :D
Smiling to myself I walked on and sure enough, I soon heard the farmer, who stood, arms waving wildly next to his truck and tried to get a group of terrified sheep to walk through a gate. The closer I came the louder the shouting got and listing to him screaming at the top of his lungs, a varied collection of all sorts of swearword and instructions were he wanted his dog take the sheep, I was close to follow order too. :lol: I shuddered feeling sorry for the sheep and walked towards Gleann Lochain which seemed like a great place to seek refuge lol.

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The path up Gleann Lochain

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The path further along

The path was great and easy to follow and by the time the shouting died down, I was able to relax again.
Following the path for a few kilometers I got to the wee bridge and started the climb after the crossing. It was soon clear that this was the end of the great path. Bog and peat hags soon made me loose the track and marching on I was soon in a labyrinth of peat hags which made walking difficult. Sticking to higher ground meant that I would add a kilometer to my total walk, but at least it was drier than further below. When I finally reached the top I stopped for a break and enjoyed the square looking Lochan Uisge.

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The wee bridge to cross

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Moody clouds in the distance

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The top of the initial climb with Carn Dearg in the distance

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Lochan Uisge- the square loch

From the loch it was a pretty easy walk towards the summit of Carn Dearg. The clouds which had lingered around the top had nearly disappeared and lovely views towards the valley below could be enjoyed.

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Myself at the summit

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Views towards the valley below

Turning back the walk ahead of me became really easy, a 7km walk which hardly dipped below 900m...God bless the Cairngorms plateau :thumbup:
Moving on the hills were certainly alive with music, aka my singing along to the music of my ipod 8) .Passing a group of terrified looking sheep (not sure if it was my singing :lol: or if they had seeked rescue in the hills from the farmer below) I was in a good mood and saw the first hill walker of the day in the far distance. I thought we would have a quick chat, but he storm marched past me only uttering a short Hi before he disappeared in the distance. A man on a mission. or on the run! Laugh. :lol: Taking my time the second Munro of the day got closer and the path led down to a field of bog, until I was walking ankle deep through black peat mud. There was no way around it and squelching through it it was pretty fun.

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The third Munro in the distance

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Can you spot 5? Thats what I call camouflage!

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The easy to follow path along the old fence post

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The summit of Carn Sgulain, there are two piles of stones which I bot visited as I wasn't sure which one was the highest point

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The other one with A'Chailleach behind

The summit of Carn Sgulain isn't that exciting, but I enjoyed the views around me.Not lingering long, I walked back the same way I came and yet again the path stopped when I reached the second labyrinth of peat hags. Following a zig zag line through them I reached the wee burn at the foot of A'Chailleach and made my way to the top. A great summit cairn invited for another rest and the realization that I missed to pack my second chocolate bar :evil: :thumbdown: . When I finished eating the remains of my brought food, I packed up and walked steeply down the hill site.

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The labyrinth of peat hags

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A'Chailleach... I have seen nicer mountain tops

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The summit cairn

The walk down was rather boggy, but opened more lovely views towards Glen Banchor below. Stooping briefly at the wee shelter for a noisy I crossed the scary looking bridge soon after, which looked rather scary and believing a sign, was not fit for crossing. Getting back to the car, I noticed the man who had stormed past me at the top and was now happy to chat.. Chatting away he told me that he had wanted to finish the round in 6h and managed to do so in just under 6. Respect!
Changing into my trainers it was time to drive back home and waiting was a hot bath and a cold beer in the fridge...a great way to finish a lovely day.

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The way back down from the summit

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Inside the shelter

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and from the outside

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The last stretch
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Just before the car park is reached.


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Mountainlove
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Re: Monadhliath- 3 gentle giants invite for a lovely day

Postby Silverhill » Wed Sep 30, 2015 6:22 pm

Nice! These make for a lovely walk especially on a good day. :D I quite liked the vast plateau with the big sky above it.
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Silverhill
 
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Re: Monadhliath- 3 gentle giants invite for a lovely day

Postby dav2930 » Thu Oct 01, 2015 9:25 pm

Smashing report. Looks like you had a really enjoyable day despite the clag on Carn Dearg. Those ptarmigan are amazingly well camouflaged - took me a good few seconds to spot all 5, they look just like the rocks around them. 8) When I did this round (in the opposite direction) I was pleasantly surprised at what a satisfying day's walking it made. I remember leaning into a very strong wind a lot of the time - and clinging to the cairn on Carn Dearg for fear of being blown off the edge! :lol:
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dav2930
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