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A Sunny Scramble up to Maol Chean dearg

A Sunny Scramble up to Maol Chean dearg


Postby Cairngorm creeper » Fri May 20, 2016 8:29 pm

Munros included on this walk: Maol Chean-dearg

Date walked: 12/05/2016

Time taken: 9 hours

Distance: 16.7 km

Ascent: 981m

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This route approaches Maol Chean dearg from Coulags Bridge but follows the path almost to Bealach na Lice approaching the summit from the north east with a scramble up the east flank of the north face.
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The route.

The sun was shining as we set out from Coulags bridge at 8:10 and continued to shine all day giving us a fabulous day on the hill. It was too warm too rush, especially given the long day light hours and superb situation.
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The bridge across the Fionn-Abhain
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A look in the bothy
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Clach nan con Fion and Sgorr Ruadh
We passed the Carn where the main route to Maol Chean dearg turns off and at 9:50 reached Loch Coire Foinnaraich.
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The Loch and Meal dearg ahead
From here we could see the buttress of Creag na h-Loire and had intended to turn of left to follow the Altt Creag na h-Loire which was just past it, but missing our turn, we followed the path a bit further to turn left at cross roads in the path marked by a cairn. Maol Chean dearg was looking very impressive from this angle.
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Maol Chean dearg
and our route looked imposing
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Seeing our objective we followed the path then continued across very uneven bouldery ground until we met up with the stream. A good place for an early lunch break and refill the water bottles. Then up steep grass
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that gave some great views
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Sgorr Ruadh

It took about an hour to reach the stream crossing at the bottom of hidden gully. The gully was about the only place still holding snow.
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Looking out from the bottom of hidden gully

The edge of the north face was a narrow ridge consisting of a series of rocky steps and grass terraces, bounded on the left by hidden gully. The scrambling wasn't hard but there were a few tricky and exposed moves.(grade1/2)
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13:50 at the top of north face
A stroll to the summit, and bask in the sunshine whilst enjoying the views.
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The summit cairn and individual luncheon booths
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Across Loch Torridon to Beinn Alligan
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Looking north
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Looking East
Eventually we had to tear our selves away (14:25) and although we considered extending the route to include An Ruadh Stac we were running a bit low on water so took the easy option of following the main route down across the boulder fields.
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Heading down with Meall nan Ceapairean ahead.
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Posing in front of An Ruadh Stac
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Admiring the white white quartz
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Then the scree. Now we knew why other walkers were looking for another way down
We were begining to wish we had carried more water up to the summit, we foolishly had not anticipated the scree and the degree to which it slowed our descent. The sounds of running water announcing the imminent arrival at the fords was joy to hear.
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16:30. An ideal spot for most welcome brew. Must have stopped for about 45min.
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a leisurely stroll back to the car

stopping to chat a chap staying in the bothy and to fix a broken gaiter strap. We eventually reached the car at 18:50.
The scrambling route up proved to be a great way to go and turned what might have been a slog up scree and boulders into another great day in the hills.
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Cairngorm creeper
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Re: A Sunny Scramble up to Maol Chean dearg

Postby jacob » Sat May 21, 2016 9:09 pm

Love the scrambling photos. The last one seems quite exposed?
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Re: A Sunny Scramble up to Maol Chean dearg

Postby Jaxter » Sun May 22, 2016 5:02 pm

Ah so that's what it looks like up there :lol: I was up there in a snow storm... :shock: although it did clear lower down.

You're route looks like a lot of fun :D Glad you got such a good day for it :thumbup:
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Re: A Sunny Scramble up to Maol Chean dearg

Postby Cairngorm creeper » Sun May 22, 2016 6:27 pm

jacob wrote:Love the scrambling photos. The last one seems quite exposed?
Thank you. It was quite exposed traversing round but thankful on good holds :D
Jaxter wrote:Ah so that's what it looks like up there :lol: I was up there in a snow storm... :shock: although it did clear lower down.
Shame you missed the views it would have looked spectacular in the snow but I bet those Boulder fields were hard going

You're route looks like a lot of fun :D Glad you got such a good day for it :thumbup:
yes it was exciting enough to be fun without being too scary. :lol:
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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: A Sunny Scramble up to Maol Chean dearg

Postby Yorjick » Sun Jun 05, 2016 9:50 am

Great photos. I did a similar ascent back in the nineties. I'm not sure but I think I may have gone up the gully to the left of your scramble route. I started from Annat. I also like to seek out the less explored routes to the top and it looks like you chose a fantastic route up here :clap: ....Maybe next time....
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Re: A Sunny Scramble up to Maol Chean dearg

Postby Cairngorm creeper » Sun Jun 05, 2016 8:10 pm

Yorjick wrote:Great photos. I did a similar ascent back in the nineties. I'm not sure but I think I may have gone up the gully to the left of your scramble route. I started from Annat. I also like to seek out the less explored routes to the top and it looks like you chose a fantastic route up here :clap: ....Maybe next time....

Thanks for yours kind comments and encouragement, we enjoy planning and trying out the more unusual routes.
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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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