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Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum effort

Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum effort


Postby dogplodder » Mon Apr 04, 2016 5:06 pm

Sub 2000' hills included on this walk: Bidein Clann Raonaild

Date walked: 16/03/2016

Distance: 6.5 km

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The plan was to find a walk with a decent path and not too steep a gradient that wouldn't force a recovering broken ankle into angles it didn't like. I was drawn to Bidein Clann Raonaild after reading mountainsofscotland's report and reckoned if it was fine for his daughter in snow it would present no problems for Mary's ankle with little or no snow. I had a good look at the north side of the hill when passing two days earlier and could see no snow at all so was hopeful the track would be clear, which it was.

For comparison of underfoot conditions just two weeks apart here's mountainsofscotland's report.

http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/Forum/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=60030

When Janice heard what I was suggesting her response was "That's a Marilyn!" which made me wonder if she thought I was being over ambitious taking Mary there. What neither of us remembered was that since breaking her ankle last April, Mary climbed Cairngorm twice in the autumn and more recently was up Meall a' Bhuachaille. So this wee Sub 2000 with vehicle track all the way would be a doddle.

We parked on the verge beside the gate to the transmitter mast near the road at the east end of Glen Docherty. The forecast had said early low lying mist would soon clear but it was to be better in the west and I was concerned we were still too far east to get the best of the conditons.

All set to head off into the murk
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Beyond the mast the track undulated through the forestry plantation and led to a locked gate with extra fencing on top which didn't look strong enough to bear any weight but to the right was one of those narrow ladder arrangements with posts on either side which can be hard to clear with an arthritic hip. Janice (the athletic one) went over it and the rest of us would have followed except that I (the opportunist one) spotted a square hole had been cut in the fence to the side about the size of a large labrador. I didn't have my labs with me (my car being full of women and the boot with all their stuff) so it seemed a waste not to use it and with Moira (the careful one) pushing my rucksack down I managed to get through without taking it off. The others followed minus their bags.

A bit further up the track we decided since we were in no hurry we'd stop for a coffee or in Mary's case a cup of tea.

Cup of tea
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Checking their phones
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We were fairly near the summit and still had no views looking east but at last we could see blue sky ahead and the sun was making a valiant attempt to shine through.

Is this a fog bow?
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Mary (the recovering from broken ankle one) and I were ahead and couldn't see the others so stood and waited for them to catch up. After about 5 minutes we still couldn't see them but we could hear them chattering away - their voices floating eerily up to us from the opaque blanket below.

Ghostly figures emerging from the mist
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Over to the south west we could see the Beinn Liath Mhor group appearing above the inversion.

Beinn Liath Mhor
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But the real wow moment was on reaching the summit and seeing Liathach and Beinn Eighe bathed in sunshine with a perfect blue sky behind.

Liathach and Beinn Eighe
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Transmitter mast at Bidean Clann Raonaild summit
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Three of us at summit cairn
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There were views on every side. Next to Beinn Eighe was Meall a' Ghuibhais which Moira and I climbed last year with two of my grandsons and which from this angle looked impressively steep rising up from Loch Maree.

Meall a' Ghuibhais, Slioch and shadow of transmitter mast
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Seeing Slioch from this side brought back memories of the fabulous day I spent climbing it with Kath and the dogs and made me sad she's no longer here to climb hills with us.

Loch Maree and Slioch
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The easterly Fisherfield hills
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Looking east towards Fionn Bheinn
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Strathconon Corbetts above the mist
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The track heading down
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Fionn Bheinn and Fannichs peeping out
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Fuar Tholl and Beinn Liath Mhor (zoomed)
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Looking back at summit
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Fish shaped lochan with Slioch and Fisherfields beyond
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Zoomed down to the road with northern tops of Strathconon Corbetts above the mist
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Fuar Tholl and Beinn Liath Mhor
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When we reached the locked gate Janice climbed over but the weight of her bag unbalanced her and she wrenched her arm saving herself from falling. So there was no question about which way we were going!

It's easier without the bag (Moira's photo)
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The final stretch through the forestry was far more pleasant now that the mist had cleared.

Moira's photo
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I had to be back early but we still had loads of time so added in a few extra miles to the journey so I could introduce the girls to the cafe I'd discovered in Kinlochewe two days earlier. For anyone passing it's well worth a visit.

Whistle Stop Cafe, Kinlochewe
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dogplodder
 
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby JimboJim » Mon Apr 04, 2016 5:18 pm

Wonderful trip, ladies and great photo's! :clap:
Thanks for sharing.
Jimmy
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby Beaner001 » Mon Apr 04, 2016 9:53 pm

Cracking pictures :clap: The smaller hills are certainly great viewpoints to the Munros and Corbetts :D
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby Silverhill » Mon Apr 04, 2016 10:10 pm

Wonderful views from that tiny knoll! Good to see that Mary's recovery is going well. :D
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby Jaxter » Tue Apr 05, 2016 1:52 am

Some lovely photos there :clap: and beautiful blue skies too, looks like you had a great day out :D
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby dogplodder » Wed Apr 06, 2016 11:11 am

JimboJim wrote:Wonderful trip, ladies and great photo's! :clap:
Thanks for sharing.
Jimmy


Thanks Jimmy!
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby dogplodder » Wed Apr 06, 2016 11:16 am

Beaner001 wrote:Cracking pictures :clap: The smaller hills are certainly great viewpoints to the Munros and Corbetts :D


This one certainly is. After seeing my pics on facebook my friend John and his wife went up a few days later and got even better views than we did! :D
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby dogplodder » Wed Apr 06, 2016 11:19 am

Silverhill wrote:Wonderful views from that tiny knoll! Good to see that Mary's recovery is going well. :D


Her ankle seems to be doing really well and ready for the big hills again - though I guess she'll always be wary around mud! :?
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby dogplodder » Wed Apr 06, 2016 12:02 pm

Jaxter wrote:Some lovely photos there :clap: and beautiful blue skies too, looks like you had a great day out :D


A fine wee dander to get the juices going for more adventurous stuff round the corner! 8)
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby McMole » Thu Sep 22, 2016 12:09 pm

That very useful hole in the fence was still there on Saturday and we agree that the Whistle Stop Café in Kinlochewe is well worth a visit. The toasted cheese scones were excellent but sadly there were none left when we called again on Monday :(
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby basscadet » Thu Sep 22, 2016 3:12 pm

I find it slightly annoying that in all your summit pics, you always look fresh and chic.. I lose my chic-ness (if there is even a hint) about 50 yards from the car, and arrive at summits both dripping in sweat and looking like I've been dragged through the heather backward :?

:lol:

Can sympathise fully with your pal - 10 months on, and my ankle is still sore at the wrong angle :roll:
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby HalfManHalfTitanium » Fri Sep 23, 2016 8:19 am

What a wonderful trip report.

I was only vaguely aware of this hill, but seeing these stunning photos I wish I'd visited it when we were last in Kinlochewe.

Whistle Stop Cafe looks much the same as when we were there... I think we spent nearly as much time inside it as we did out on the hills...

Tim
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby dogplodder » Sat Sep 24, 2016 6:51 pm

McMole wrote:That very useful hole in the fence was still there on Saturday and we agree that the Whistle Stop Café in Kinlochewe is well worth a visit. The toasted cheese scones were excellent but sadly there were none left when we called again on Monday :(


The lady who runs and cooks for the Whistle Stop loves what she does and I think you can tell in the quality of the food. One time we were there we ordered fruit smoothies and after we'd finished were brought more for no extra charge because they make fresh for every customer and had made too much. Nice touch that. :thumbup:
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby dogplodder » Sat Sep 24, 2016 6:55 pm

basscadet wrote:I find it slightly annoying that in all your summit pics, you always look fresh and chic.. I lose my chic-ness (if there is even a hint) about 50 yards from the car, and arrive at summits both dripping in sweat and looking like I've been dragged through the heather backward :?



This made me laugh as no one has ever called me chic before and I often do look like I've been dragged through a hedge backwards (why is it always backwards - wouldn't frontwards be just as bad?)! :lol:
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Re: Tiny knoll with giant views - big reward for minimum eff

Postby dogplodder » Sat Sep 24, 2016 6:59 pm

HalfManHalfTitanium wrote:
Whistle Stop Cafe looks much the same as when we were there... I think we spent nearly as much time inside it as we did out on the hills...

Tim


Perfection is a good day on the hills followed by food at the Whistle Stop. 8)
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