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.

Am Faochagach

Am Faochagach


Postby spiderwebb » Sun Jan 28, 2018 6:16 pm

Date walked: 20/01/2018

8 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).

It had been a while since the meandering crew had been out in the hills, the combination of Christmas, New Year and simply not all being about at the same time. Whilst plans were afoot for adventures further on into the year, a date of the 20th seemed possible for all concerned.

I had been up Am Faochagach twice before, the first time was a day I would never forget, as it was the last time I walked with both my Springers, Holly and Sam, and not least as it was the day that they both ran off down the side of the hill on return from the summit. Sam went walkabout and it was 4 days and nights later before he was found. He subsequently disappeared again in some local woods, believed snatched, never to be seen again. Both occasions I was humbled by the help from others who cane to help in the searches. They are both gone now, I miss them dearly, and cherish this rare shot of the two of them on the summit on that first ascent :(

WH1.jpg


My second visit, was the day after my Compleation, 2nd July 2017, and despite the merriment of the night before and messages of best wishes, managed to drag myself and the Essex crew across the soggy walk in and to the summit :D

This third visit would present none of this sogginess, but other challenges awaited.

The forecast for the day was a good one, but there had been heavy snow in the run up and for the Southern contingent of two Willies and a Jonny lol, a good 3 to 4 hour drive in what could be difficult driving conditions. But that’s just a normal drive for us meanderers. The advance party, Debbie and Adam would make their way over the previous night and park up at the start in Ayevan 2, now fully equipped with heating, and oh how that would be needed this weekend.

The Ethernet was running hot with messages on the Friday night and it was game on. The banter had already started.

I headed over on the Saturday morning from Miltonduff, devoid of snow for many weeks, whilst other parts of the country had been hit with some depth. I was looking forward to a good snow day.
The roads were clear to Inverness and onto Garve, although the mercury was dropping and as I reached the Ben Wyvis car park, snow cover increased and the temperature was down to minus 7. The car park here did not look negotiable with a good foot of snow, although the gritters had been out and the road was relatively clear.
Just before the Aultguish Inn, the temperature had hit minus 10 and my Tesco Winter screen wash was no more, I had to stop to throw snow on the screen to clear it :shock:

WH2.jpg


I found Debbie and Adam parked up before the walk start point, it was as far as they dare go, having driven over in the dark. I reversed into their car park, to ensure my front wheels were close to tarmac.
As far as I dare :?

WH3.jpg


With the kettle on, after a change of gas bottle, ably assisted by some Polish workers, who fortunately had the right size spanner for the gas…. Oops Debbie :lol:
But already, what a day, as the sun rose over a frozen Loch Glascarnoch, it was stunning, and already worth getting out of bed for.

WH4.jpg


The early morning sun catching the hillside across the Loch

WH5.jpg


I must have been on cup of splosh number 3 and bacon roll consumed when the two Willies (sorry Wullie) and the Jonny arrived and joined in the breakfast banter and photo shooting as the day dawned bright and clear.
Willie checks the snow depth :lol:

WH6.jpg


We departed the premature car park the couple of miles to the start point by the Met office station just beyond the bridge, to face the next problem, the car park was under a heap of snow, but the meanderers were prepared. Serious shovelling ensued, whilst Jonny supervised and for some reason I parked ready to reverse, blocking the entire A832.

WH7.jpg


But we were in !

WH8.jpg


Some had their own method of snow clearance, albeit in the wrong place for assisting the car park clearance.

WH9.jpg


The team prepared for the off, it was already 1115 hrs.
Winter brings a completely different aspect to walking, lack of daylight not being one of the constraints with us meanderers, but best of all is it gives the landscape a clean slate, regular footpaths all but disappear and you have complete wilderness restored.

WH10.jpg


We set off across the road to the stile and the snow was deep from the start, and headed off for the river, in single file, breaking trail took some effort and time, such that Wullie had turned grey/white by the half way mark to the river crossing.

WH11.jpg


The odd deeper hole was encountered en route until we made the river, somewhat exhausted not from breaking trail but from the banter and constant laughter, how I love these trips.
Now river crossings in warmer months can be sufficiently hard, but wet feet in such conditions as these are to be avoided. But despite some decision swaying mid-way across by Willie, we all made it over, but some dampness had penetrated my Yetis (I wasn’t quick enough to stop seepage past the Velcro), but nothing serious. Jonny won the prize for wet feet, and a change of socks and emptying of boots was required on the far side.

WH12.jpg


One bold step for mankind… the deep bit :crazy:

WH13.jpg


After some refreshment, I seem to still own the coffee sharing team flask, with at least one other :wink: , we set off to head for the bealach, again in knee deep snow, or higher for those challenged with height :lol: , except she wasn’t here today :(

WH14.jpg


As it steepened we took it in turns to break trail, 200 paces each, the trail behind would have made a perfect toboggan run for a swift descent, if only the snow was firmer.

WH15.jpg


But we didn’t care, the views, the sun, these are the days we live for. There’s only so much looking at maps, reading books, following forums, until you just have to get out there.

WH16.jpg


WH17.jpg


WH18.jpg


By 1530hrs we were still some way off the bealach, with as much distance still to cover as we had already done and with no let up in the snow depth. We stopped for a break, merry banter and decision time. It could be that once on the ridge the snow could have been blown clear, or at least to a more pace inducing depth, but either way we would be coming off in the dark, no change there then lol. Not to mention the effort to get this far and so it was to be the turn round point.

WH19.jpg


A beautiful day, with great friends.
WH20.jpg
User avatar
spiderwebb
Stravaiging
 
Posts: 1505
Munros:97   Corbetts:15
Grahams:3   Donalds:1
Hewitts:108
Wainwrights:68   
Joined: May 18, 2011
Location: Miltonduff, Elgin

Re: Am Faochagach

Postby IreneM » Sun Jan 28, 2018 6:28 pm

Smashing photos Dave, and what a great adventure! :D
IreneM
Walker
 
Posts: 185
Munros:282   Corbetts:176
Grahams:12   Donalds:12
Sub 2000:10   Hewitts:1
Wainwrights:1   Islands:12
Joined: Oct 8, 2008
Location: Dunfermline

Re: Am Faochagach

Postby ancancha » Sun Jan 28, 2018 7:15 pm

Loch Glascarnoch sunrise photos are braw 8)
User avatar
ancancha
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 989
Munros:84   Corbetts:3
Grahams:1   Donalds:1
Joined: Jun 30, 2014
Location: Killadysert

Re: Am Faochagach

Postby gammy leg walker » Sun Jan 28, 2018 7:51 pm

What a brilliant day we had Spider

Brilliant weather

Brilliant company

Brilliant pictures really captured the adventure

But I'm sure the picture that made the day is missing

FB_IMG_1516532876574.jpg
User avatar
gammy leg walker
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 3345
Munros:262   Corbetts:7
Grahams:4   Donalds:3
Sub 2000:2   
Islands:7
Joined: Jan 30, 2010
Location: Central Region
Walk wish-list

Re: Am Faochagach

Postby pollyh33 » Sun Jan 28, 2018 7:57 pm

Sorry to have missed this but duty called. :( :(

Heard the craic was unmissable. :lol: :lol: :lol:
User avatar
pollyh33
Walker
 
Posts: 2577
Munros:282   Corbetts:18
Grahams:5   Donalds:2
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: Mar 30, 2011
Location: Rutherglen

Re: Am Faochagach

Postby spiderwebb » Sun Jan 28, 2018 8:06 pm

Gammy can't a guy get a bit of privacy, what happens in the hills stays in the hills :lol: :lol:

It was a brilliant day :D :D
User avatar
spiderwebb
Stravaiging
 
Posts: 1505
Munros:97   Corbetts:15
Grahams:3   Donalds:1
Hewitts:108
Wainwrights:68   
Joined: May 18, 2011
Location: Miltonduff, Elgin

Re: Am Faochagach

Postby jonny616 » Sun Jan 28, 2018 8:46 pm

So much fun :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Great account Spider :clap:
User avatar
jonny616
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1571
Munros:280   Corbetts:13
Grahams:2   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:17
Wainwrights:8   Islands:7
Joined: Aug 19, 2009

Re: Am Faochagach

Postby rockhopper » Sun Jan 28, 2018 10:29 pm

Enjoyed that, amusing too ! :clap:

gammy leg walker wrote:But I'm sure the picture that made the day is missing..............

Just a wee bit "two" cheeky for me :wink: :wink: :wink: - cheers :)
User avatar
rockhopper
 
Posts: 6620
Munros:282   Corbetts:218
Grahams:64   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:9   Hewitts:2
Wainwrights:3   Islands:19
Joined: Jun 1, 2009
Location: Glasgow

Re: Am Faochagach

Postby BlackPanther » Mon Jan 29, 2018 1:18 pm

What a bum-tastic set of photos :lol: :lol: :lol:
User avatar
BlackPanther
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 3464
Munros:260   Corbetts:165
Grahams:114   
Sub 2000:48   
Joined: Nov 2, 2010
Location: Beauly, Inverness-shire

Re: Am Faochagach

Postby ancancha » Mon Jan 29, 2018 4:28 pm

BlackPanther wrote:What a bum-tastic set of photos :lol: :lol: :lol:


Snow ball launcher must have been distracted, way off target :lol:
User avatar
ancancha
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 989
Munros:84   Corbetts:3
Grahams:1   Donalds:1
Joined: Jun 30, 2014
Location: Killadysert

8 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 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: acrawford26, David232 and 48 guests