walkhighlands

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.

Loss on Luss

Loss on Luss


Postby rohan » Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:13 pm

Grahams included on this walk: Beinn Dubh, Beinn Eich, Doune Hill

Date walked: 23/02/2016

Time taken: 9 hours

Distance: 15 km

Ascent: 1382m

4 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).


our_route.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts



It was a stunning winter day, the rising sun turning Loch Lomond into a silvery jewel, the ground underfoot was hard as girders with the overnight biting frost. I rejoiced that I had chosen this day to set out to climb 4 out of the 6 Luss Grahams. I parked in the Luss Village carpark, no charges being off season and headed over the handy footbridge above the school. No doubts as to where this walk begins as there is a signpost to Beinn Dubh. I started up the long, but easy ridge glancing back to drink in the early morning views to the southern end of Loch Lomond.
_MG_0582 sunrise over gatepost.jpg

Sun coming up over a gate post.

Early on I saw larks, magpies and a buzzard but that was the extent of the birdlife apart from the usual ravens for the remainder of the walk.
What could have been just a long slog was enlivened by the views to the North and East opening up as well as views of the more southerly Luss hills.
_MG_0583 Ben Lomond trhough the trees.jpg

Ben Lomond coming into view.


I reached the snow line and there was plenty of evidence of others having enjoyed this walk before me, the tracks in the snow made for easy progress.
IMG_20160223_093756892 luss pano.jpg

Panoramic View of the Luss Hills


More and more hills were appearing as I climbed. The air clarity was amazing and I some difficulty identifying the hills beyond about 30 miles (about the distance of Ben More and Stob Binnien) as there were just too many. One that presented no such problem was The Cobbler with its mates living up to their name of the Arrochar Alps.
_MG_0584 The Cobbler.jpg

The Cobbler

Onwards over the first summit (named Beinn Dubh but not actually the highest point), another cairn and onto the highest point of this first Graham at 657m. Again the views were spectacular.
_MG_0586 Doune Hill peeping over first summit.jpg

Doune Hill appearing

_MG_0585 Looking northwards up Loch Lomond.jpg

View to the North end of Loch Lomond

Doune Hill was in front of me with fantastic views of the Arrochar alps.
_MG_0589 Doune Hill.jpg

Doune Hill

_MG_0590 The Cobbler and Bein Ime.jpg

The Cobbler and Beinn Ime

I tried not to think too hard about the descent and reascent in front of me, down to 200m then up another 530m to the summit of Doune Hill ( but who's counting). I studied both the map and the hill and picked out my route up the south east shoulder of Doune Hill. The ascent looked quite steep particularly around the mid section which appeared to be a little craggy, however I figured that it wouldn't be too difficult. First, though, I had to head roughly south west for about 250m before picking up the N.W shoulder running off the final bump of Beinn Dubh named Mid Hill. I had by now decided that it was unlikely that I would be able to include Cruach an t-sidhein in this outing unless I made good progess up Doune Hill which knowing me would be unlikely.
_MG_0588 Cruach an t-sidhein.jpg

Cruach an t-SIdhein

The descent to the bottom of the glen seemed to take for ever but the wee burn that ran down from Bealach an Duin was a lovely spot to grab a bite to eat to fuel me up the steep ascent above. Initially I made good progress, the shoulder steepened at around 500-550m and I chose to go through the outcrop of boulders that appeared to offer some easy scrambling. The route I picked took me to a bit that was covered in hard packed snow that would require donning crampons for about 3-4 steps. I figured that there was another route that weaved in and out and under and over the rocks and my crampons remained in my sack. Unfortunately I would have probably been quicker putting on the crampons as I had to remove my rucksack and lug it underneath the boulders and heave it up over the others. It took me about 15 minutes to gain as many metres but once through the angle of slope decreased significantly. For the first time the snow did not play ball and it was a case of 2 steps on top then braking through the crust. Fortuntely it wasn't far to the summit of Doune Hill where I liberally discarded poles and rucksack and camera case in an untidy spread around the summit whilst I took panoramic photos with my mobile and other pics with my DSLR.
_MG_0596 Trig.jpg

Trig Point

IMG_20160223_141347623 trig pano.jpg

Panoramic view

_MG_0599 Arran and Ailsa Craig copy.jpg

Ailsa Crag and Arran

_MG_0593 Ailsa craig zoomed.jpg

Ailsa Crag zoomed

_MG_0594 Luss Hills.jpg

The other Luss Hills

It was 2.15 by now and Cruach an t-Sidhein was definitely out of the question. At this point I saw 2 other walkers arriving from the other direction. I stayed to greet them and then, as they tripped over all my scattered stuff, I hastily gathered it up feeling very inconsiderate. Neither they nor I expected to meet anyone else on the hill. I was able to take a photo of the 2 of them at the Trig and we took a few minutes exchanging chat about our respective routes and trying to identify far distant hills, figuring out that we could see Ben More on Mull 50 plus miles distant. Time was ticking so I made a hasty exit and was pleased to discover that the snow was ideal for making fast progress. I felt that I was racing along but this is all relative. I looked longingly over to Cruach an t-Sidhein but it was out of the question. I was over the small bump of Beinn Lochain and went to get my mobile out to take a quick photo. Horrors it wasn't in my pocket... it wasn't in my rucksack ... and it wasn't in my camera bag. I had either left it at the summit of Doune Hill or it had dropped out of my pocket somewhere in between as my pocket was unzipped. I could not remember what I did with it after I took the panoramic photo. I suspected that I had left it at the Trig point but it was too far to go back to what would be the furthest point from my car at this time of the day (now after 3 pm). I also thought that the other walkers may have picked it up and may either spot my post on the WH "lost and found" forum or hand the phone into the shop at Luss. I decided to leave it which would cause me some inconvinience as I was away from home and had various people to meet up with over the next few days but that would teach me to be so careless. I pressed on. Beinn Eich was a delight particularly with it's icing sugar coating of snow.
_MG_0602 summit Beinn Eich.jpg

Beinn Eich

I picked up a set of footprints from the small cairn and this made for an easy descent to Edentaggert where a muddy path took me over a stile below the farm and onto the track. I hit the road over the bridge and as I set off down the single track road a car approached from the other direction. I stood to let it pass but it stopped and a hand holding my mobile came out of the window. It was Alan, one of the walkers I had met earlier. They had found my mobile and decided to see if they could meet me off the hill. John, his walking buddy, had remained at the end of the footbridge in case I crossed that as they drove round (no way could I have walked that fast). It was so thoughtful of them and I also got a lift down the Glen to my car. My loss had turned into a gain for me. So Alan and John if you are reading this, once again thank-you so much for your kindness and thoughtfulness at the end of what was a brilliant hill day.
Attachments
_MG_0592 Ailsa Craig.jpg
User avatar
rohan
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 675
Joined: Mar 12, 2012

Re: Loss on Luss

Postby denfinella » Fri Feb 26, 2016 1:33 pm

Lovely! Surprising (to me anyway) that Ailsa Craig is visible from these hills!

Was thinking about doing the circuit of Glen Striddle this weekend (i.e. using the first part of your route, over Beinn Dubh). What were the snow conditions / depth underfoot like (and how high was the snow level) - straightforward enough without winter gear or better to wait? Looks doable from your photos but hard to tell. Thanks!
User avatar
denfinella
Walker
 
Posts: 955
Munros:60   Corbetts:33
Grahams:18   Donalds:13
Sub 2000:49   Hewitts:11
Wainwrights:6   
Joined: Mar 19, 2012
Location: Edinburgh

Re: Loss on Luss

Postby katyhills » Fri Feb 26, 2016 9:06 pm

I'm just discovering these hills having been on Chaorach a couple of weeks back. Lovely report and great pix rohan. Particularly like the last one, but they're all terrific. Bet you were glad to get your phone back safely too. :)

If it's a clear day, the views are superb denfinella. I had a really nice view of Ailsa Craig too, and also Beinn Bheula.
katyhills
Walker
 
Posts: 314
Munros:117   Corbetts:26
Grahams:7   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:2   
Joined: Jul 7, 2015

Re: Loss on Luss

Postby teaandpies » Fri Feb 26, 2016 9:17 pm

Could you be my ghost walker? :shock:

Please have a quick scan of my walk report I've done on this exact walk done on the 24th.
teaandpies
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 925
Munros:94   Corbetts:16
Grahams:8   
Sub 2000:7   Hewitts:6
Joined: Mar 19, 2014
Location: Glasgow

Re: Loss on Luss

Postby dogplodder » Sat Feb 27, 2016 6:09 pm

Being up north these hills weren't on my radar...... but your report has changed all that! Brilliant photos. :thumbup:
User avatar
dogplodder
 
Posts: 3403
Munros:221   Corbetts:52
Grahams:15   
Sub 2000:24   Hewitts:4
Wainwrights:8   
Joined: Jul 16, 2011

Re: Loss on Luss

Postby katyhills » Sun Feb 28, 2016 6:09 pm

They really are terrific dogplodder. I was out on Tullich Hill yesterday so the views were similar to rohan's.
Ideal for keeping legs ticking over without having to do any of the big hills. My knees aren't what they used to be! The view when I got to the cairn was stunning - could have stayed up there all day. I felt I could have reached out and touched the Arrochar hills because they looked so bright and sharp and near. You could see right across to the two at Strathearn (Vorlich and Stuc) and I could also make out Ben Challum and some of the others at Tyndrum. Ben Lomond looked great as usual too. :D
katyhills
Walker
 
Posts: 314
Munros:117   Corbetts:26
Grahams:7   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:2   
Joined: Jul 7, 2015

Re: Loss on Luss

Postby rohan » Mon Feb 29, 2016 1:04 am

Was thinking about doing the circuit of Glen Striddle this weekend (i.e. using the first part of your route, over Beinn Dubh). What were the snow conditions / depth underfoot like (and how high was the snow level) - straightforward enough without winter gear or better to wait? Looks doable from your photos but hard to tell. Thanks!


Huge apologies , Definnella, I have only just returned to the internet after posting this report . I do hope you went out this weekend as it was lovely weather but as the snow conditions can change from day to day (ice to slush and back again) I would always recommend taking winter gear. What can seem like a sprinkling a few hundred metres below can be more seriously icy up at the top even on a Graham although the snow on Beinn Dubh on the day I did it was soft.
User avatar
rohan
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 675
Joined: Mar 12, 2012

Re: Loss on Luss

Postby rohan » Mon Feb 29, 2016 1:09 am

Lovely report and great pix rohan.

Thanks katyhills, it was easy to take good photos, I didn't need to do much.
User avatar
rohan
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 675
Joined: Mar 12, 2012

Re: Loss on Luss

Postby rohan » Mon Feb 29, 2016 1:30 am

teaandpies wrote:Could you be my ghost walker? :shock:

Please have a quick scan of my walk report I've done on this exact walk done on the 24th.



Yep, that must have been me.
User avatar
rohan
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 675
Joined: Mar 12, 2012

Re: Loss on Luss

Postby litljortindan » Tue Mar 01, 2016 4:47 pm

Great views and I, too, wouldn't have thought of views to Ailsa Craig. The zoom picture is a great one I think. Must have been life affirming to get your phone back too!
User avatar
litljortindan
Walker
 
Posts: 1672
Munros:111   Corbetts:55
Grahams:26   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:47   Hewitts:12
Wainwrights:10   
Joined: Dec 11, 2011

Re: Loss on Luss

Postby rohan » Wed Mar 02, 2016 12:18 am

dogplodder wrote:Being up north these hills weren't on my radar...... but your report has changed all that! Brilliant photos. :thumbup:

Well worth the trip South and plenty of others nearby to keep you going.
User avatar
rohan
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 675
Joined: Mar 12, 2012

Re: Loss on Luss

Postby rohan » Wed Mar 02, 2016 12:21 am

litljortindan wrote:Great views and I, too, wouldn't have thought of views to Ailsa Craig. The zoom picture is a great one I think. Must have been life affirming to get your phone back too!


Thank-you. I wouldn't have thought about doing a TR as there are plenty of others around far better than mine but the main reason was to give credit to Alan and John.
User avatar
rohan
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 675
Joined: Mar 12, 2012

Re: Loss on Luss

Postby denfinella » Wed Mar 02, 2016 12:55 pm

rohan wrote:
Was thinking about doing the circuit of Glen Striddle this weekend (i.e. using the first part of your route, over Beinn Dubh). What were the snow conditions / depth underfoot like (and how high was the snow level) - straightforward enough without winter gear or better to wait? Looks doable from your photos but hard to tell. Thanks!


Huge apologies , Definnella, I have only just returned to the internet after posting this report . I do hope you went out this weekend as it was lovely weather but as the snow conditions can change from day to day (ice to slush and back again) I would always recommend taking winter gear. What can seem like a sprinkling a few hundred metres below can be more seriously icy up at the top even on a Graham although the snow on Beinn Dubh on the day I did it was soft.


No worries Rohan - yes, we ended up doing Beinn Dubh on Saturday. Beautiful day and walk it was too - in the end the snow line was a little higher than I'd expected. The snow was mostly hard, but it was only on the plateau so no steep parts to negotiate. Perfect really!
User avatar
denfinella
Walker
 
Posts: 955
Munros:60   Corbetts:33
Grahams:18   Donalds:13
Sub 2000:49   Hewitts:11
Wainwrights:6   
Joined: Mar 19, 2012
Location: Edinburgh

4 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: Jaxter, kevin_wheeler, m3doc, malky_c, meamp and 61 guests