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Bruach na Frith via NW ridge

Bruach na Frith via NW ridge


Postby Cairngorm creeper » Sun May 14, 2017 11:18 pm

Munros included on this walk: Bruach na Frithe

Date walked: 02/05/2017

Distance: 13.3 km

Ascent: 870m

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The approach path to the Cuillins from Sligachan, with that view of the Am Basteir tooth never fails to make my heart skip a beat and the weather forecast was perfect for a Skye scramble, no rain, no wind, just wall to wall sunshine. We had been up Bruach na Frith previously by the main path through Fionn Choire but our objective today was to scramble up the north west ridge.
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The route

We were the only car in the carpark as we set out at 8:30, with blue skies and sunshine.
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The best view ever at the start of a walk

We followed the Glen Brittle path and then crossed the Allt Dearg Mor to head toward Fionn Choire. The landscape was very dry and by the time we remembered we hadn't filled the water bottles any streams still running were just muddy trickles, so we had to make a wide detour for water. Back on the path, climbing up towards the Coire, we could see the ground leading up to the ridge on our right and it was just a matter of choosing the best spot to head up the steep grass. At the top of the first slope there was slight dip with a Lochan and the full glory of the NW ridge in front of us
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Looking at NW ridge
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Unfortunately we had to follow the loose scree path too reach it :lol: but to be fair the scree was mild by Skye standards and the worst was avoidable. It wasn't long before we were on top of the ridge where we stopped for a drink before the fun began. It all started as a narrow path above grassy slopes
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A grassy start
then you are gently eased into scrambling mode by the first rocky sections where the bypass path is still easily accessible and it is hard to draw your eyes away from views the Cuillins around you.
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Approaching the first Rocky section
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The start of the scramble
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The crest of ridge then appears on your left and once established on this the scrambling is a little more challenging with opportunities to escape onto the path only apparent at infrequent intervals. The holds were good and the rocky grippy in the dry. It was loose in places, and I was very surprised when a firm substantial looking block rolled away from under my foot. :roll: . Some sections seemed quite steep, but not overly exposed, although more challenging alternatives were available :lol:. The OH decided to try one of these alternatives. He was out of sight so I didn't witness his bravery, I just heard the expletives and later got to patch up the battle wounds. :roll:.
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Getting a little harder
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Steep in places
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.
It was a long, sustained and very enjoyable scramble which ended in a short chimney that could be very interesting if you were carrying a large rucksack :lol:.
A few more steps and we were on Bruach na Frith summit and ready for a well deserved brew.
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14:00 Well deserved cuppa
. But as were pouring the water into the pot we spotted a mayfly nymph. Not wanting to boil it alive it took serveral attempts to persuade the said nymph back into the water bottle for release on the way down.
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Relaxing summit break
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It took great willpower to make a move but eventually the moment could be postponed no longer
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14:30 Time to make tracks
.
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Looking back at the summit
We couldn't remember where the best point to start the descent was so wandered along the ridge until we reached a likely path and headed down.
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The path down
.
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Scenic if unstable decent
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Would be dishonest not to show scree

Once the scree has been conquered the path through Fionn Choire made for easy going although we were almost out of the Coire before we reached a descent stream to release our captive nymph. This time it took several attempts to get him to vacate the water bottle and then when I refilled it several of his friends had moved in and so I go through the process all over again. :lol: .
We were then back on the approach path and heading out to Sligachan.
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18:15 and back at the car.
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Cairngorm creeper
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Re: Bruach na Frith via NW ridge

Postby BlackPanther » Mon May 15, 2017 9:45 am

Wow looks superb in summer conditions! Like a playground for adults! :D
We scrambled down this ridge in winter, all bypasses covered in slushy snow, so we had no choice but stick to the very edge. We were carrying heavy rucksacks with axes, crampons etc. and the rock was wet. I was close to wetting my pants :lol: but had a good practice in "methodology of tight squeezing and balancing on slippery rock" ha ha. Always wanted to come back and climb up this route on a lovely day like you had. At the moment we're too obsessed with Fisherfields, but Skye always looks good for a summer weekend :D

The upper part of the west ridge in sort of-winter conditions:
Image
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Re: Bruach na Frith via NW ridge

Postby jamesb63 » Mon May 15, 2017 12:02 pm

Very nice report and fantastic weather you had for it :clap:
I see in one of your pics you are standing where I splt on 12/13th this month
at the summit bivy ,while I was doing the traverse of the last 9 I had to do
I WILL BE BACK the Cullin is magical
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Re: Bruach na Frith via NW ridge

Postby Cairngorm creeper » Mon May 15, 2017 9:31 pm

BlackPanther wrote:Wow looks superb in summer conditions! Like a playground for adults! :D
We scrambled down this ridge in winter, all bypasses covered in slushy snow, so we had no choice but stick to the very edge. We were carrying heavy rucksacks with axes, crampons etc. and the rock was wet. I was close to wetting my pants :lol: but had a good practice in "methodology of tight squeezing and balancing on slippery rock" ha ha. Always wanted to come back and climb up this route on a lovely day like you had. At the moment we're too obsessed with Fisherfields, but Skye always looks good for a summer weekend :D

The upper part of the west ridge in sort of-winter conditions:
Image


I read your report before we went, I think descending the ridge would be quite tricky in the dry and very scary in the conditions you had. :crazy: I would have been squeaking and swearing the whole way. It was fabulous in the dry, one of the best scrambles we have done.

jamesb63 wrote:Very nice report and fantastic weather you had for it :clap:
I see in one of your pics you are standing where I splt on 12/13th this month
at the summit bivy ,while I was doing the traverse of the last 9 I had to do
I WILL BE BACK the Cullin is magical
[/quote]
I totally agree, The Cullins are magical and waking up on Bruach na Frith must have been amazing. Your traverse of the ridge in one go was a great achievement, we are taking a more sectional approach :lol:
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Cairngorm creeper
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Re: Bruach na Frith via NW ridge

Postby Mal Grey » Tue May 16, 2017 10:04 am

Great report of one of the best viewpoints anywhere. Because of where it is, B n F tends to get looked down upon as one of the two "easiest" Cuillin summits, but anywhere else in Britain it would be regarded as an amazing classic day out!
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Re: Bruach na Frith via NW ridge

Postby jacob » Tue May 16, 2017 4:45 pm

Now there's some proper scrambling fun. Looks like a nice offtrack adventure, good for an interesting tripreport. :clap:
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Re: Bruach na Frith via NW ridge

Postby Cairngorm creeper » Tue May 16, 2017 9:43 pm

Mal Grey wrote:Great report of one of the best viewpoints anywhere. Because of where it is, B n F tends to get looked down upon as one of the two "easiest" Cuillin summits, but anywhere else in Britain it would be regarded as an amazing classic day out!

Thanks Mall, as you say B nF is a great mountain day which ever way you go.

jacob wrote:Now there's some proper scrambling fun. Looks like a nice offtrack adventure, good for an interesting tripreport. :clap:

Glad you enjoyed the report. It was a fun scramble in superb setting, what more could you want :D
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