Graeme, Ross and I all started the walk together at 8am.
Due to some Munroist chit chat we missed the bridge to cross the river, it was 8.05am!, however we crossed via some large boulders and were on the path to ascend the 1st Munro of Beinn Starav. It was this point i went solo and started the unrelenting Ascent of Starav, the wind was now swirling into a frenzy!!
Ascent to Starav.
Looking back to the Buichailles of Glencoe.
Final rocky ascent to Starav.
Graeme and Ross bringing up the rear....but not for long!!.
Stunning Loch Etive with views to Ben Cruachan.
After 2 hours without stopping i finally reach the summit of Starav, views are awesome.
Its been 5hrs since i've eaten so i decide to stop for a bite to eat and take in the views. Graeme and Ross are minutes behind and when they reach the summit they smile and are on there way to Munro number 2....they also inform me they don't carry water (they drink from streams) and rarely stop, WTF!!
15mins later and i'm on my way, no sign ahead of the Inverness Cyborgs!!
Navigation is simple due to clear views. It's not long till at the Bealachan Lochain Ghaineamhaich. I notice that the Cyborgs have ditched the rucksacks, i do the same. I follow a path right of the Bealach and soon start the ascent of munro no.2 Beinn Nan Aighenan. This is also relentless but having no rucksack makes things easier. The wind has relented to a mere breeze. Halfway up the Inverness boys/men are descending past me, they inform me that lunch will be taken on summit of Munro no.3.
Top of Beinn Nan Aighenan, no rucksack and water in hand.
On descent stopped and chatted to folk doing Beinn Nan Aighenan, they loved the fact they could wear shorts in October!!. Back at the bealach a group from Stirling passed me, the leader looking **** off....i think a few too many were slowing progress, oh dear!!. At least the sun was shining.
Started ascent and was soon on the ridge to Munro no.3 Glas Bheinn Mhor.
Summit of Glas Bheinn Mhor looking back to Starav. No sign of the Inverness duo, surely they must be starving!!.
I'm hungry again so take a short break and refuel. I notice below me the Inverness duo heading towards the bealach....do these guys run on super unleaded!!
10mins later and i'm heading to the bealach on route to munro no.4 Stob Coir'an Albannaich, i'm feeling energetic after a huge swig of irn bru .
I find the Inverness duo finally sitting on their backsides and consuming food, well i think its food !!. Graeme is not 100%, he had flu last week....i'm guessing if he hadn't they wouldn't be sitting having food!!.
I lead the way and head for Stob Coir'an Albannaich, ascent is steep and the gruelling pace and heat is taken its toll....however i'm soon at the summit, Graeme and Ross minutes behind me.
Stob Coir'an Albannaich, looking towards munro no.5 Meall nan Eun.
The inverness duo head off with me in tow. Descent is steep to the bealach below.
Watering hole for the Cyborgs!!
The ascent to Meall nan Eun is across grassy slopes. The sun is strong, winds non existent....i'm thinking of going topless!!. The last push to the summit is tough going, the cyborgs are ahead of me and i manage to hang on to thier tails. Soon it's handshakes all round as we summit munro no.5 Meall nan Eun. Ross checks his GPS to confirm summit as we seemed to reach it quickly, i thought these cyborgs would have some built in GPS!!. We are indeed at the summit . In my euphoria i forgot to take a photo, damn!!.
Soon we're heading down the steep grassy wet slopes and following the burn. Graeme quotes that
...yeah right!!.you can really eat up the ground in this terrain!!
The path next to the burn becomes more prominent and easy to walk on, the finish is in site.
Looking back to Meall nan Eun
Graeme on the bridge over the Allt Ceitlein.
From the bridge its 1k to the finish.
This was a fantastic walk, albeit tough at times....a reasonable level of fitness is required. It was great meeting Graeme and Ross, i gained some valuable tips from these guys....fantastic humans/machines who have such enthusiasm for the hills.
It was now 5pm, the walk had taken 9hrs....a great time indeed. I was looking forward to driving in the last 2hrs of daylight, and catching the views of Glen Etive.
Glen Etive, stunning.
Oh and if your wondering if Graeme and Ross are a halucinatory vision in my imagination then i present you with a final photo of the Inverness Cyborg Duo........