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Sgorr Ruadh in the Shadow of Giants

Sgorr Ruadh in the Shadow of Giants


Postby Cairngorm creeper » Mon May 02, 2016 10:15 pm

Munros included on this walk: Sgòrr Ruadh

Date walked: 29/04/2016

Time taken: 11 hours

Distance: 16 km

Ascent: 933m

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Looking at sharp north ridge of Sgorr Ruadh on a map we felt, in winter conditions, it would take us too far out of our comfort zone, but there was no thaw in sight and we were in danger of ending up in a purgatory of rounded boggy hill sides. Inspired by all the recent walk reports from The Torridons we decided to at least go and take a look at the northern approach route.
There was snow lying on the ground as we left home, but by the time we reached Inverness it had turned to rain and as we pulled into the Beinn Eighe carpark at 9:15, the sun was shining.
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The Route Approaching Sgorr Ruadh from the north.
With Liathach looming magnificently behind us we set out on a good path that goes past the Ling hut and then follows the Allt Frainach.
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The Ling Hut and Lochan an Aisgar

As we were studying the snow peaks ahead we struggled to identfy exactly which one our quarry was.
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Not sure which is which
They were all looking inviting. I was rather taken by this one.
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Maol Chean Dearg (probabley)

As is the way of paths it petered out into marshy ground a couple of kilometres earlier than the map led us to believe it should and shortly after this the snow line started so I can't say if it ever reappears. We blundered forward for a while, following the line of the path, but not sure quite how far along it we were, (although in retrospect it should have been obvious from the lie of the land), and then decided it may be a good idea to start pacing the distance. Our skills in navigation are usually much improved by a lack of paths and appalling visability :?
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Must be just here.

The ascent to Coire Grannda is by a series of steep tussocky slopes between plateaus. At the head of Coire Grannda, sitting in the middle of the bealch between Sgor Ruadh and Beinn Liath Mhor, is a magnificent rich brown sandstone rock buttress, and the Corrie walls comprise of impressive crags.
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Coire Grannda (not done justice by this photo)
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The ascent to the Bealach is up a ramp just the right of the buttress.
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13:00 Time for lunch.
The soft snow and time spent on navigation has put us well behind schedule and our hopes of reaching the summit are fading but fuelled by noodles we decide to keep going until 14:30 or the terrain defeats us.
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Steep route up to Sgorr Ruadh ridge. Beinn Liath Mhor behind.
The soft snow makes the ice axe more of a security blanket than useful safety tool, but I hang on to mine all the way just the same. The weather on top was still remarkable still and although the route crossed a number of tops they were nowhere near as steep or narrow as they appeared from below.
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The penultimate top.
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14:30 and a storm brewing to the north west.
.
It's cut off time and the weather is becoming very blustery, it looks like some scrambling, on snow covered rocks may be required to get past the steep top in front of us, :( but we can see the summit and it is very close. :? But before I can say I want to wimp he's off :crazy:
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Heading for the summit.
It must have been a bit exciting because I remember swearing about being left behind :lol: but the steep section was short lived and then a quick easy stroll.
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Sgorr Ruadh summit
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Looking down the North Ridge from the summit
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14:53 and we are on the top
.
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So glad we made it and I wasn't given the chance to wimp out.
We didn't hang about at the top but what goes up must come down.
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A bit of exposure
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A bum slide
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Finding the right footholds. Smiling or teeth gritting?
and we are onto easier ground admiring the views.
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Maol Chean Dearg
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Admiring Beinn Alligin from the narrowest section of the ridge

We took a less steep route back to the Bealach but I'm glad we didn't try and come up this way :lol: .
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The Bealach and Glen with Beinn Liath Mhor
Another refuelling stop and taking a little care more care with our route finding at 17:00 we headed back through Coire Grannda and onto the path. With the Torridon Giants ahead all the way it would be hard not to find the way back but finding the best route and identifying the start of the path was very time consuming.
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Storm over Beinn Alligin
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Beinn Eighe
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Liathach

19:45 and back at the car after superb day in the hills and a little bit of bottle gained.
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Cairngorm creeper
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 701
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Re: Sgorr Ruadh in the Shadow of Giants

Postby Silverhill » Sun May 15, 2016 9:51 pm

Amazing how much snow there still was two weeks ago! That is a great route to this hill 8) . I have planned an approach from the south. Maybe I need to reconsider!
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Re: Sgorr Ruadh in the Shadow of Giants

Postby Cairngorm creeper » Sun May 22, 2016 6:16 pm

Silverhill wrote:Amazing how much snow there still was two weeks ago! That is a great route to this hill 8) . I have planned an approach from the south. Maybe I need to reconsider!

If you do try this route I hope you enjoy it as much as we did. :D
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Cairngorm creeper
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 701
Munros:147   Corbetts:22
Grahams:6   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:15
Wainwrights:9   
Joined: Jun 4, 2013
Location: Grantown-on-spey

Re: Sgorr Ruadh in the Shadow of Giants

Postby malky_c » Wed May 25, 2016 9:52 pm

Great photos - weather has moved on quite a bit since then :lol: . One of my favourite areas this, and Sgorr Ruadh and Beinn Liath Mhor are two of my most climbed. Although I've done a longer circuit from the north, I've never used this approach. Another possibility for the future perhaps :)
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Re: Sgorr Ruadh in the Shadow of Giants

Postby Cairngorm creeper » Sun Jun 05, 2016 8:18 pm

malky_c wrote:Great photos - weather has moved on quite a bit since then :lol: . One of my favourite areas this, and Sgorr Ruadh and Beinn Liath Mhor are two of my most climbed. Although I've done a longer circuit from the north, I've never used this approach. Another possibility for the future perhaps :)

Thank you. I can totally understand why it's your favorite area Although this report does look well out of season now :lol:. We are looking forward to exploring it further.
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Cairngorm creeper
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 701
Munros:147   Corbetts:22
Grahams:6   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:15
Wainwrights:9   
Joined: Jun 4, 2013
Location: Grantown-on-spey

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