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Scunnered in the Arrochar Alps

Scunnered in the Arrochar Alps


Postby Jokester » Tue May 29, 2018 8:33 pm

Route description: Ben Vane, from Inveruglas

Munros included on this walk: Beinn Ime, Beinn Narnain, Ben Vane

Date walked: 27/05/2018

Time taken: 8 hours

Distance: 21 km

Ascent: 1735m

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I had been looking forward to this since last summer, didn't get the opportunity to make it last year so the weather looked good for this weekend so decided to go for it. Possibly a bit ambitious for the first big walk of the year.

Parked up at the visitor centre in Inveruglas but found the machine wouldn't take my money (£4 for all day parking - change only). The walk is nice enough up the road towards the hydro dam at Loch Sloy, the tarred road making it easy going. It was still fairly cool at this point so good walking weather.

ImageIMG_0339 by matthew_chalmers, on Flickr

There's no obvious path up Ben Vane looking up from the bottom but it is there and once on it you can make fast progress upwards picking your way through the rock outcrops.

ImageIMG_0342 by matthew_chalmers, on Flickr

ImageIMG_0344 by matthew_chalmers, on Flickr

ImageIMG_0347 by matthew_chalmers, on Flickr

After a hard slog I reach the summit and get my breath back. It's now stifling warm though and whilst there's a stiff breeze it does nothing to cool.

ImageIMG_0349 by matthew_chalmers, on Flickr

Next stop is Beinn Ime. I had hoped there would be a path to follow but there isn't anything of note that I could see, so it was a case of just heading straight off to the bealach between Ben Vane and Beinn Chorranach

ImageIMG_0350 by matthew_chalmers, on Flickr

I'm now sweating buckets and the hike up to Beinn Ime is brutal, though eventually a path appears to make things a bit easier the hillside is steep. I make it to the top and there's some great views. It's also a much more popular approach from the otherside, with a well built path leading off.

ImageIMG_0352 by matthew_chalmers, on Flickr

The heat has taken its toll and I'm down to my last 1/2l of water but I'm now officially heading back to the car, at least I keep telling myself that!

ImageIMG_0354 by matthew_chalmers, on Flickr

I stop at the crossroads between Ben Arthur, Beinn Ime and Beinn Narnain for lunch and for a rest. I've never seen the hills so busy, crowds of people are heading up to the Cobbler and a few up towards Beinn Narnain, after stopping for 20minutes I head off up the path towards the last Munro for the day.

Disaster.

Excruciating pain, my hamstring has gone into cramp and it feels like my ligaments are cutting into my knee like cheese wire. I'm now sat on a rock in the path trying to stretch it back out again worrying that I might not be able to continue.

The pain passes.

I pick myself up and gingerly make my upwards.

ImageIMG_0355 by matthew_chalmers, on Flickr

There's a trig point at the top, but it's not obvious whether this is the highest point or whether it's the cairn to the west, I touch both to make sure. By this time I've had enough, knowing that the route back to Inveruglas doesn't have a path down off Beinn Narnain so it's going to be painful going. I finish what water I have left and set off and eventually drop down onto a path down in the glen.

ImageIMG_0356 by matthew_chalmers, on Flickr

Doesn't look particularly steep does it! I curse Cameron McNeish and his book.

Dehydration is kicking in at this point and my leg muscles are aching but I know there is a river I need to cross just along the path. But the weather much have been very dry recently and the river is a trickle and doesn't look safe enough to drink. There'll be other streams further along and it's not long before I can hear running water and I come round the corner and see a waterfall into some sort of concrete structure. Where does the water go though! The bridge crosses in front of it and nothing comes out the other side, just a dry river bed. I curse SSE.

It's not till I reach Inveruglas water a couple of km further along the road I finally manage to get water that looks fresh enough to drink. I fill a 1l bottle with it and give it a squirt of diluting juice.

By the end of the walk I had drank 4l of water and when I weighed myself that night I had lost 2kg.
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Jokester
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 60
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Joined: Apr 30, 2011
Location: Aberdeenshire

Re: Scunnered in the Arrochar Alps

Postby Bmg99 » Wed May 30, 2018 2:47 pm

Running out of water is a pain. I took 3.5L with me on Sunday just in case! I've also started to carry at least one isotonic energy gel. They taste horrible but are small and light to carry and can help stop cramping up and give a good wee energy boost.
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Bmg99
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Re: Scunnered in the Arrochar Alps

Postby micksjoiner » Wed May 30, 2018 6:49 pm

Done this route the opposite way starting at succoth carpark a fortnight ago ,also ran out of water ,ended up drinking the dogs water ,he found relief at the stream at the bottom on Ben vane.Decided to invest in a Sawyer squeeze today.
Heading back up that way again at weekend.
micksjoiner
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Re: Scunnered in the Arrochar Alps

Postby Jokester » Sun Jun 03, 2018 5:55 pm

Bmg99 wrote:Running out of water is a pain. I took 3.5L with me on Sunday just in case! I've also started to carry at least one isotonic energy gel. They taste horrible but are small and light to carry and can help stop cramping up and give a good wee energy boost.

I carry a couple of isotonic energy packs, plus a use electrolyte tablets in one of my 1l bottles yet still had cramp. I think in future for these sorts of all day hot weather walking I've got 4l of water on me to be sure.
Jokester
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 60
Munros:68   
Joined: Apr 30, 2011
Location: Aberdeenshire

Re: Scunnered in the Arrochar Alps

Postby Jokester » Sun Jun 03, 2018 5:57 pm

micksjoiner wrote:Decided to invest in a Sawyer squeeze today.

That does look interesting, might get one just to be safe.
Jokester
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 60
Munros:68   
Joined: Apr 30, 2011
Location: Aberdeenshire

Re: Scunnered in the Arrochar Alps

Postby litljortindan » Sun Jun 03, 2018 8:56 pm

Sounds like a tough day but some good views to compensate.
I have a lifestraw filter which has been very useful for collecting water when expected sources are running low and looking undrinkable.
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litljortindan
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Re: Scunnered in the Arrochar Alps

Postby Crazy_walker » Tue Jun 05, 2018 10:19 am

Definitely tough but a beautiful day. I also carry a few isotonic energy packs and Acuraflex cream from Nutrilago (for muscle or joint pain). I never go out without it :)
Crazy_walker
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