walkhighlands

Share your personal walking route experiences in Scotland, and comment on other peoples' reports.
Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.

Unfinished Business in Glencoe

Unfinished Business in Glencoe


Postby Magoo82 » Tue Dec 12, 2017 12:07 am

Route description: Creise and Meall a'Bhuiridh from the Ski centre

Munros included on this walk: Creise, Meall a'Bhuiridh

Date walked: 10/12/2017

Time taken: 6 hours

6 people think this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

Back in late November 2011 I embarked upon this route on a beautiful early winter's day although the snowline was above the floor of the glen as I recall. I've lost all photos from that day but i'd reached the top of Meall a'Bhuirid then descended without including Creise. The reason for this was that i'd only really started hillwalking earlier that year, only had about a dozen munros under my belt and didn't feel comfortable with my skills, experience or confidence for tackling the ridge to Creise in winter conditions. Simply put, I didn't really know what I was doing.

Fast forward then to the weekend just past. I'd enjoyed a stroll up Arthur's Seat in the capital on Saturday and arrived home to Sunday's forecast. It was definitely going to be a hill day and I decided it was time to revisit the ski centre and finish what i'd started six years ago.

The bitterly cold temperatures enforced a very careful drive West, the car was telling me it was -8C outside.

ImageUntitled by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

The car park was abuzz with activity as skiers congregated in anticipation of a day on the slopes, and judging by the exotic smell of some of their cigarettes it would be quite an experience 8)

The initial path is well signposted and weaves its way up around the ski-lift pillars. The icicles hanging over the burn bore testament to the freezing conditions, and as height was gained I enjoyed the view over the low lying fog i'd driven through on Rannoch Moor.

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

ImageUntitled by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

Once the top of the chairlift is reached it's best to turn right over what in spring would likely be a quagmire but thankfully has been frozen over on both of my visits. This allows an ascent of the shoulder which is more forgiving in gradient than tackling Meall a'Bhuiridh head on.

The ascent was punctuated by a few photo stops, particularly over to Ben Nevis, but the stops were short as the cold was really beginning to bite when stationary.

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

One of my favourite hills, Schiehallion, could also be viewed in the distance.

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

Soon, the top of Meall a'Bhuiridh was reached and the views were just as impressive as I remembered. The advantage of the "brass monkeys" temperature was that the air was as clear as a bell with next to no haze to obscure things. There were nothing but snowy peaks as far as the eye could see.

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

A quick spot of lunch was had before the cold prompted me into action and I made for the ridge to the Creise plateau.

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

The risge walk was thoroughly pleasant and in hindsight I would have been fine six years ago. Those kind of ridges always look steeper and more intimidating when you look at them head on but once you're on them you realise that they're not as bad as they look. I zipped up onto the plateau and in what seemed like no time at all I had achieved the real target of the day; Creise! And the views were well worth the six year wait!

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

The easiest way back is to return over the top of Meall a'Bhuiridh so effectively it feels like a three-munro day. I was only getting to tick one off my list aswell so one for the effort of three didn't seem like great value :lol:

Nevertheless, it's hard to feel short-changed on days like these!

It was 14:15 when I left Creise's summit and so I was anticipating a race against failing light to get off the hill. However, after years of abusing my body with the party lifestyle I decided seven months ago that I was really needing to stop drinking & smoking for the good of both my health and general welfare and the fitness gains have been staggering. I whizzed back up Ma'B without stopping and took one last snap from the top...

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

However, as I descended back to the car park I was treated to one last delight as the setting sun imparted a lovely pink hue upon the sky towards the darkening east lighting up Schiehallion and Rannoch Moor.

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

ImageGlencoe by Ross McGowan, on Flickr

I've said it before but on a good winter's day like this the Scottish mountains are as beautiful as any other mountains that i've seen in other parts of the world and i've been to the Himalayas twice. These two are fabulous hills to climb in winter as the views are almost unconstrained.

When you have to bail on a munro you often soften the blow by convincing yourself that "it's an excuse to go back". Well in this case I was glad of it. A magnificent day out and hopefully a sign of what we can expect this winter! :shock: :wink:
User avatar
Magoo82
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 141
Munros:173   Corbetts:5
Grahams:1   Donalds:2
Sub 2000:8   Hewitts:1
Wainwrights:2   Islands:15
Joined: Apr 2, 2011
Location: Coldside, Dundee

Re: Unfinished Business in Glencoe

Postby Alteknacker » Tue Dec 12, 2017 12:31 am

WHAT a stunning day - stuck in too much snow in the Midlands, I feel most envious! One superb pic after another.

Well, I hope to get up there towards the end of this week :D .
User avatar
Alteknacker
Scrambler
 
Posts: 2701
Munros:167   Corbetts:29
Hewitts:205
Wainwrights:78   
Joined: May 25, 2013
Location: Effete South (of WIgan, anyway)

Re: Unfinished Business in Glencoe

Postby arjh » Tue Dec 12, 2017 12:39 am

Magnificent photos of what must have been a brilliant day. :clap:
User avatar
arjh
Scrambler
 
Posts: 83
Munros:90   Corbetts:23
Grahams:9   Donalds:4
Sub 2000:9   Hewitts:258
Wainwrights:131   Islands:6
Joined: Sep 5, 2015
Location: Sussex

Re: Unfinished Business in Glencoe

Postby PeteR » Tue Dec 12, 2017 1:38 pm

Perfect winter walking......looks absolutely stunning :clap:
User avatar
PeteR
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 1964
Munros:282   Corbetts:152
Grahams:87   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:160   Hewitts:3
Islands:7
Joined: Jan 27, 2010
Location: North Ayrshire

Re: Unfinished Business in Glencoe

Postby Magoo82 » Tue Dec 12, 2017 1:53 pm

Alteknacker wrote:WHAT a stunning day - stuck in too much snow in the Midlands, I feel most envious! One superb pic after another.

Well, I hope to get up there towards the end of this week :D .


Cheers! I hope the weather holds up here for you. Sounds like you guys are getting a tough time of it right now!


arjh wrote:Magnificent photos of what must have been a brilliant day. :clap:


Thank you! Yeah it was well worth the early rise and braving the cold :D

PeteR wrote:Perfect winter walking......looks absolutely stunning :clap:


Yeah, a good winter day up the hills is hard to beat. Views were incredible!
User avatar
Magoo82
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 141
Munros:173   Corbetts:5
Grahams:1   Donalds:2
Sub 2000:8   Hewitts:1
Wainwrights:2   Islands:15
Joined: Apr 2, 2011
Location: Coldside, Dundee

Re: Unfinished Business in Glencoe

Postby BlackPanther » Tue Dec 12, 2017 2:06 pm

Beautiful, crispy and white :D I guess many of us headed for hills (bigger or smaller) last Sunday. The day was amazing!

I remember I had exactly the same thoughts about the ridge between Creise and MaB. It looks very intimidating, especially when covered in snow, but nowhere near as bad as it seems. In our case, we had to carefully avoid snow overhang on the rim of the corrie as well, but it just added to the fun :wink:
User avatar
BlackPanther
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 3202
Munros:260   Corbetts:163
Grahams:112   
Sub 2000:40   
Joined: Nov 2, 2010
Location: Beauly, Inverness-shire

Re: Unfinished Business in Glencoe

Postby Magoo82 » Tue Dec 12, 2017 2:19 pm

BlackPanther wrote:Beautiful, crispy and white :D I guess many of us headed for hills (bigger or smaller) last Sunday. The day was amazing!

I remember I had exactly the same thoughts about the ridge between Creise and MaB. It looks very intimidating, especially when covered in snow, but nowhere near as bad as it seems. In our case, we had to carefully avoid snow overhang on the rim of the corrie as well, but it just added to the fun :wink:


Agreed, the ridge is absolutely fine if you stick to the crest. There's a faint path that snakes its way up but you can't really make it out under the snow. On the way up towards the head of the ridge I lost my way and veered around to the right and ended up on some steep scrambly ground where I was having to kick toe-holds into the ice without being secured which caused one brief "yikes" moment but I got up no bother and just made sure not to go back down that way! :lol:
User avatar
Magoo82
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 141
Munros:173   Corbetts:5
Grahams:1   Donalds:2
Sub 2000:8   Hewitts:1
Wainwrights:2   Islands:15
Joined: Apr 2, 2011
Location: Coldside, Dundee

Re: Unfinished Business in Glencoe

Postby Backpacker » Tue Dec 12, 2017 2:37 pm

Looks like you had a cracker of a day
User avatar
Backpacker
Wanderer
 
Posts: 1211
Munros:275   Corbetts:50
Grahams:30   
Sub 2000:48   
Islands:4
Joined: Jan 8, 2013
Location: Laurencekirk

Re: Unfinished Business in Glencoe

Postby ancancha » Tue Dec 12, 2017 2:53 pm

Fabulous pink photae :clap:
User avatar
ancancha
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 988
Munros:84   Corbetts:3
Grahams:1   Donalds:1
Joined: Jun 30, 2014
Location: Killadysert

Re: Unfinished Business in Glencoe

Postby Dunblane Bagger » Wed Dec 13, 2017 2:57 pm

I was also out in Glencoe on Sunday climbing the wee bookle and it was a brilliant, brilliant day.

It was -9C when we set off at 10am, and we reckon it was in the region of -15C on the summits.

My only grumble was that I was slightly disappointed in the lack of deep snow, but when the day is as good as it was, it is hardly fair to grumble..

It's not often such a good day comes along so I'm glad you took advantage and got out there.

Long may this winter continue after the poor effort of last winter. :clap:
User avatar
Dunblane Bagger
Scrambler
 
Posts: 93
Munros:280   Corbetts:14
Grahams:2   Donalds:2
Sub 2000:4   Hewitts:19
Wainwrights:6   
Joined: Mar 13, 2015
Location: Hopefully up a mountain somewhere

Re: Unfinished Business in Glencoe

Postby Magoo82 » Wed Dec 13, 2017 4:57 pm

Backpacker wrote:Looks like you had a cracker of a day


ancancha wrote:Fabulous pink photae :clap:



Dunblane Bagger wrote:I was also out in Glencoe on Sunday climbing the wee bookle and it was a brilliant, brilliant day.

It was -9C when we set off at 10am, and we reckon it was in the region of -15C on the summits.

My only grumble was that I was slightly disappointed in the lack of deep snow, but when the day is as good as it was, it is hardly fair to grumble..

It's not often such a good day comes along so I'm glad you took advantage and got out there.

Long may this winter continue after the poor effort of last winter. :clap:


Cheers fellas!

Yeah there wasn't much of the white stuff on the tops but there was a decent amount next to the ski runs that I used to run down instead of picking my way down frosty rocks :lol:
User avatar
Magoo82
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 141
Munros:173   Corbetts:5
Grahams:1   Donalds:2
Sub 2000:8   Hewitts:1
Wainwrights:2   Islands:15
Joined: Apr 2, 2011
Location: Coldside, Dundee

6 people think this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).



Walkhighlands community forum is now advert free

We need help to keep the site online.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by setting up a monthly donation by direct debit?



Return to Walk reports - Scotland

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 432 guests