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Memorable Monday morning in Assynt

Memorable Monday morning in Assynt


Postby tombombadilio » Fri Apr 22, 2016 12:05 am

Route description: Ben More Assynt and Conival

Munros included on this walk: Ben More Assynt, Conival

Date walked: 04/04/2016

Time taken: 7.5 hours

Distance: 17.1 km

Ascent: 1599m

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Hi all.

This was another awesome experience in Sutherland. The impression of desolation of this place was made all the more so by the lack of human interaction and the eerie absence of wind - so quiet.

Weather conditions were not set to be perfect but the morning would see enough visibility to make it worthwhile with the possibility of some sunshine before clag moved in from the south.

So up at 0430 (apologies, Mark (another hosteller who was walking the Cape Wrath Trail) and thanks for submitting to my interrogation the day before on what's the best kit to use) to leave at 0500 from the Inchnadamph Hostel with head torch on for the long walk in on the landy track.

Totally worth it.


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First light, looking west to Canisp/Suilven?


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Colours changing so quickly - stunning


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Startled some deer, but they startled me more


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Nice surprise inversion to east upon reaching bealach north of Conival


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Stunning view east again


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Loch Assynt


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Pano with Loch Assynt


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Ridge ahead, willing the sun to break through


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First sight along ridge, Conival summit in foreground - ecstasy


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Approaching Conival summit


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Conival summit


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Basking on Conival but looking dark to south


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Start of ridge traverse to Ben More Assynt


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Another ridge shot


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Ben More Assynt summit (on left)


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Myriad lochans in desolate Glen Cassley plus weird sky, like it's been torn open


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Pano looking ENE


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Clouds intermittently draped over ridge on return


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Disappointing find on Conival return, subsequently bagged up and pocketed


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Bum slide 001 of the day


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Tricky looking section but on closer inspection, a doddle


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View down Gleann Dubh in daylight


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In a big cave


The variety of weather and terrain made this trip really interesting.

I wasn't too disappointed to lose the sun by the time I reached Ben More Assynt as I had had my fix early on and the visibility was still awesome.

The level of scrambling was well within my comfort zone and there weren't even any moments of mild peril. The cliff like section to reach the start of the ridge, once approached, actually had lots of very ergonomically placed food holds and was no probs.

Human interaction was reinitiated at approx. 1000-1030 on return leg (two couples). Glad that I met them at that post-ridge stage as I had rather selfishly wanted that ridge and those early morning sights all to myself. Yet it was nice to eventually share it and chat and tell them what was ahead.

Exploring the (entrances to the) caves was a perfect way to round the walk off (thanks, walking couple 001 for suggesting that!).
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tombombadilio
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Re: Memorable Monday morning in Assynt

Postby Jaxter » Fri Apr 22, 2016 7:12 am

Looks amazing, great sunrise pictures. I love sunrises but you have to be out so early this time of year to get them :lol:

Glad you had such a good day. I'm looking forward to doing these in the summer so great to see what I have to get excited about :D
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Re: Memorable Monday morning in Assynt

Postby Mal Grey » Fri Apr 22, 2016 9:24 am

I love that part of the world. Thanks for taking me back there with your words and pictures, and good effort for getting up so early to make it (even) more special!
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Mal Grey
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Re: Memorable Monday morning in Assynt

Postby Alteknacker » Fri Apr 22, 2016 11:54 pm

Wonderful pics that bear eloquent testimony to what must have been a truly wonderful day. What a fix! :clap: :clap:
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Re: Memorable Monday morning in Assynt

Postby tombombadilio » Sun Apr 24, 2016 5:38 pm

Alteknacker, thanks and absolutely, now chasing the next one! (concerned about post-282 life already… what will be the fix then?)

Mal Grey, you're welcome. Yeah, I'm a convert too to the far NW. I know it's Munro-bagger's blasphemy, but even considering going back up there just to walk the smaller ones, the Suilvens, Canisps etc. They're really staggering beautiful.

Jaxter, thanks, would defo recommend the stupidly early to bed, stupidly early to rise approach approach for this one, but in the summer that might mean getting up at 0200-0300?! :lol: All totally, totally worth it though (but only if the MWIS + Met Office guys deliver, that is!).
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tombombadilio
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Re: Memorable Monday morning in Assynt

Postby litljortindan » Sun Apr 24, 2016 11:14 pm

Some dramatic pictures in that early morning light with, as you say, lots of variety.
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Re: Memorable Monday morning in Assynt

Postby Silverhill » Mon Apr 25, 2016 9:13 pm

Fantastic pictures capturing this special place beautifully :D . I very much look forward to walking along that ridge from Conival to Ben More Assynt!
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Re: Memorable Monday morning in Assynt

Postby jamesb63 » Tue Apr 26, 2016 7:15 am

Thanks for that I really enjoyed your report ,I love the early starts myself
just something about the solitude I think :D
I still have these to do and really look forward to them
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