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.

The Big Buachaille

The Big Buachaille

Postby mountainsofscotland » Mon Nov 02, 2015 7:20 am

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

Date walked: 01/11/2015

Time taken: 5.66 hours

Distance: 14.2 km

Ascent: 1285m

3 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).

The weather forecast this morning looked pretty-good. I therefore abandoned plans to ascend one of my remaining dull Grahams and instead drove from my base in Arrochar round towards Glencoe with a view to ascending Bidean nam Bian.

As I drove along the A82 towards the Glencoe Mountain Resort, Buachaille Etive Mor looked outstanding. As it was 12 years since I last ascended this fine mountain, I also abandoned plans for Bidean nam Bian in favour of once again ascending the Big Buachaille.

I stopped twice en-route to the car park at Lagangarbh to take photos.

Buachaille Etive Mor from the Glencoe Mountain Resort road:

Buachaille Etive Mor from the A82:

Click here to see a map of the route undertaken

While getting suited and booted, an expensive disaster struck as I stupidly dropped my iPhone into a deep puddle. The water must have damaged the circuitry inside as it will no longer charge.

From the car park, I made my way towards Lagangarbh and beyond towards Coire na Tulaich.

Lagangarbh and Buachaille Etive Beag (Stob Coire Raineach) during initial walk in:

Lagangarbh and Buachaille Etive Mor:

Heading towards Coire na Tulaich:

Passing the fork in the path leading round towards Curved Ridge and other scrambles/climbs brought back great memories of my last ascent of Buachaille Etive Mor via Agag's Groove. Kevin led the 1st and 3rd pitch and I led the 2nd and 4th pitch. Despite it being 12 years ago, I still remember the exposure on the 4th pitch.

Kevin ascending Agag's Groove on Rannoch Wall:

Today, I would be taking the easy approach via Coire na Tulaich. I last ascended this way in 2001.

Ascending Coire na Tulaich:

The path ascending Coire na Tulaich was much better than I remembered. Perhaps the path has improved during the past 12 years.

Looking back towards Lagangarbh, the Mamores and Blackwater Reservoir:

Within 75 minutes of leaving the car, I reached the top of Coire na Tulaich. From the top of the coire, I proceeded towards Stob Dearg.

Stob Dearg from the top of Coire na Tulaich:

The views this morning were very impressive. The Black Mount Munros had wisps of cloud inversion while all the Glencoe hills to the West were completely cloud-free. The clarity today was outstanding.

Inversion over the Black Mount Munros:

It was good to set eyes on Bidean nam Bian, my original target for today. This was my final Munro in October 2005.

Bidean nam Bian beyond Buachaille Etive Beag:

The ridge out to Stob na Doire:


Ascending Stob Dearg:

The view down to the Kingshouse and the flat expansive of Rannoch Moor was also nice.

Looking down to Rannoch Moor from Stob Dearg:

I visited both cairns at the summit area as I wasn't sure which one was highest.

Across the A82 lies the Corbett, Beinn a' Chrulaiste. It is a great hill for views of Buachaille Etive Mor.

Beinn a' Chrulaiste with the Blackwater Reservoir beyond from top of Stob Dearg:

View from summit of Stob Dearg:

Bidean nam Bian, Buachaille Etive Beag and the Aonach Eagach:

Ben Nevis and Carn Mor Dearg (zoom):

From the summit of Stob Dearg, I returned to the col and then progressed along the ridge with a view to visiting Stob na Broige (Munro), Stob na Doire (Munro Top) and Stob Coire Altruim (Munro Top).

Looking towards Stob na Doire from the 902m top:

Looking back to Stob Dearg:

The ascent of Stob na Doire was straight-forward.

View towards Stob Coire Altruim from the summit of Stob na Doire:

The descent from Stob na Doire is quite steep but there is a good path to follow.

Looking back to the steep descent of Stob na Doire:

On reaching the col, I took a short diversion off the path to have a brief stop on a grassy area with two cairns.

Two cairns near the col between Stob na Doire and Stob Coire Altruim:

I then progressed up Stob Coire Altruim and on towards Stob na Broige.

Stob na Broige and Stob Coire Altruim:

Looking back to Stob Dearg and Stob na Doire from summit of Stob Coire Altruim:

Heading out to Stob na Broige:

Looking across to Buachaille Etive Beag (Stob Dubh):

I had my longest stop of the day at the summit of Stob na Broige where I took numerous photos of the surrounding hills. I particularly enjoyed the view towards Loch Etive. Glen Etive is an area I definitely need to revisit in 2016.

At the summit of Stob na Broige:

Looking back along the ridge to Stob Dearg, Stob na Doire and Stob Coire Altruim from summit of Stob na Broige:

Ben Nevis in the distance above Buachaille Etive Beag's col from the summit of Stob na Broige:

Bidean nam Bian and Buachaille Etive Beag (Stob Dubh) from the summit of Stob na Broige:

Glen Etive hills and Loch Etive from the summit of Stob na Broige:

View towards Loch Etive from the summit of Stob na Broige:

From Stob na Broige, I retraced my steps to Stob Coire Altruim and beyond to reach the top of a track which leads down to Lairig Gartain.

Descent to Lairig Gartain:

Care is needed in the descent as it is steep in places and there is an unavoidable 20-30m section of easy down-scrambling next to a waterfall.

On reaching Lairig Gartain, I followed the track out to the A82 and then walked along the A82 back to the Lagangarbh car park.

Walking alongside the River Coupall in Lairig Gartain:

Today was about as good as it gets on the hills. On a good day it is worth doing good hills.
Last edited by mountainsofscotland on Fri Jul 14, 2017 9:12 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Posts: 132
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:219   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:361   Hewitts:91
Wainwrights:73   Islands:46
Joined: May 9, 2015
Location: Banffshire

Re: The Big Buachaille

Postby jamesb63 » Mon Nov 02, 2015 9:05 am

Very nice report and some excellent pics with the views :clap: :clap:
I done the a few months ago and all I saw were my feet :lol: :lol:
it was thick clag from halfway
User avatar
Mountain Walker
Posts: 397
Munros:218   Corbetts:2
Sub 2000:2   
Joined: Apr 14, 2015
Location: Alexandria

Re: The Big Buachaille

Postby ilovescotty » Mon Nov 02, 2015 10:42 am

What perfect weather, looks like you had a great day! Makes me want to just quit work and drive up to the hills! Anyone else get that feeling on a Monday?
User avatar
Mountain Walker
Posts: 112
Munros:5   Corbetts:1
Joined: Jan 7, 2014
Location: Herefordshire

Re: The Big Buachaille

Postby tweedledog » Mon Nov 02, 2015 11:31 am

Looks like a glorious day :D .
On the iPhone, I can recommend the standard technique of putting it in a bowl of rice in a dry place. I fell in a river with mine :crazy: but about 3 weeks in rice in the airing cupboard brought it back to life - for a couple of years anyway.
User avatar
Mountain Walker
Posts: 220
Joined: Jan 20, 2013
Location: Argyll

Re: The Big Buachaille

Postby dogplodder » Mon Nov 02, 2015 11:34 am

Great photos. Who would believe that was November? :D
User avatar
Posts: 3513
Munros:227   Corbetts:53
Sub 2000:24   Hewitts:5
Wainwrights:9   Islands:21
Joined: Jul 16, 2011

Re: The Big Buachaille

Postby BobMcBob » Mon Nov 02, 2015 7:32 pm

ilovescotty wrote:What perfect weather, looks like you had a great day! Makes me want to just quit work and drive up to the hills! Anyone else get that feeling on a Monday?

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday... any day with a 'day' in it :D Especially after looking at reports like this.
User avatar
Posts: 1420
Munros:73   Corbetts:14
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:33
Joined: Jul 26, 2011
Location: In a van, somewhere

Re: The Big Buachaille

Postby kev_russ » Mon Nov 02, 2015 11:39 pm

Braw pics as per usual 8)
User avatar
Posts: 388
Munros:152   Corbetts:50
Grahams:24   Donalds:26
Sub 2000:13   Hewitts:8
Joined: Mar 17, 2009
Location: Edinburgh

Re: The Big Buachaille

Postby dav2930 » Tue Nov 03, 2015 12:09 am

What a perfect day for the Buachaille. Superb.

Did this traverse in June 2001, starting up Curved Ridge. At this time of year I guess CR could have been a bit damp and greasy, despite the sunshine. Nice pic of Agag's Groove - very exposed for a VDiff, esp on pitch 4 as you say (did that in 1983 and I wouldn't mind doing it again - you've given me an idea, thanks!). :D
User avatar
Mountain Walker
Posts: 1346
Munros:237   Corbetts:13
Grahams:12   Donalds:42
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:162
Joined: Feb 13, 2015
Location: Cumbria

3 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).

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: No registered users and 42 guests