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Sgurr a’ Mhaoraich

Sgurr a’ Mhaoraich


Postby Cairngorm creeper » Sun Oct 14, 2018 8:37 am

Munros included on this walk: Sgurr a'Mhaoraich

Date walked: 06/10/2018

Distance: 10.9 km

Ascent: 960m

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Our first visit to this stunning area and the walk up Sgurr a’ Mhaoraich, going up the south ridge and coming down to the east via Sgurr Coire nan Eirichealliach seemed to pack everything you might hope to find in an autumn hillwalk into just a few short miles.
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The Route

We woke up in the car park by at the western end of Loch Quoich to a beautiful autumn morning
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Morning Veiw

and by 08:45 we were on our way along the track. The copse of forestry shown on the map no longer exists and from the appearance of the ground was felled may years ago.
Peeping above the ridge ahead was the top of Sgurr a' Mhaoraich, topped with a dusting of snow :D .
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First Glimpse of Sgurr A’ Mhaoraich

After about three quarters of km we left the track, to make our up towards Leac nan Gaidhseich, roughly following the stream. The ground was soft and boggy but never impossibly so, wet feet and embarrassing sinking incidents were avoided. The roar of the rutting stags echoed around the coire adding to autumn atmosphere.
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Looking Across Loch Quoich

The ridge initially was very broad but higher up it became better defined with outcrops of rock to clamber over or weave between.
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Broad Start to the Ridge

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Becoming more definded

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Sculptured Rockface
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Scramble over or avoid

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Intriguing perched boulder

The weather was variable, very warm in the sunshine, interspersed with gusts of a cold wind blowing mist and drizzle around.
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Sunshining Across Kinlochourn

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Cloud gathering in the south

The ridge then broadened out again and we were walking up towards the rim of Coire Chaorainn which we followed around to the summit. Just in time for Lunch and an impressive ariel display by a pair of ravens. :D
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Sgurr A’ Mhaoraich

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Jeremy Jetboil cooking lunch

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Clouds blowing, time to move

From the summit the path down looked unpleasantly steep but despite being muddy it was less treacherous than it looked.
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Descending along side the crags

And then it started to snow! A chilly but shortlived surprise! :lol:
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And then the snow came

Following the path we realised we were dropping further and further below the crest. We have been caught out that way before! Never ones to take the easy way we made our back up onto the crest. Easiest enough at first, but the rock was very greasy and slippery! Not to my taste at all! In fact a full blooded squeek was building up.
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I think I’m going to squeek

Then we reached what from above looked like a steep scramble on greasy rock above a vertical drop. :crazy: Time to admit defeat, and make our way back down to the path and live to squeek another day.
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The bypass path

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It was not long before the path made its way back up the coire rim and on safe ground we could enjoy the views.
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Looking back at the decent that defeated us. I think we were looking down at the ramp near the edge.

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Back along the ridge

From Sgurr Coire nan Eirichealliach there seemed to be a number of paths leading down in different directions so we followed the edge of the ridge which eventually met up with a well trodden route.
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Glen Quoich and Gleouraich

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Loch Quoich

Lower down a shortcut around the copse trees shortened our trek along the road.
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Short cut around the back of the copse of trees and through an overgrown farmyard

And we arrived back at starting point at 16:00.
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Cairngorm creeper
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Re: Sgurr a’ Mhaoraich

Postby Mal Grey » Sun Oct 14, 2018 11:15 am

Grand day for it. There are some books that a relatively dismissive of this hill, as a short day. I thought it was a cracking hill.

We did it the other way round, and came across the greasy rocky bit in fog and snow. It was quite a surprise, not being mentioned in the stuff I'd read. We found a way round and up a snow slope, with a steep finish above quite a drop. All rather interesting for an "uneventful" hill, without ice axes or winter gear!

The stalker's track up onto the ridge has to rank as one of the easiest ways to climb a hill anywhere.

Thanks for sharing.
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Mal Grey
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Re: Sgurr a’ Mhaoraich

Postby Cairngorm creeper » Mon Oct 15, 2018 8:25 am

Mal Grey wrote:Grand day for it. There are some books that a relatively dismissive of this hill, as a short day. I thought it was a cracking hill.

We did it the other way round, and came across the greasy rocky bit in fog and snow. It was quite a surprise, not being mentioned in the stuff I'd read. We found a way round and up a snow slope, with a steep finish above quite a drop. All rather interesting for an "uneventful" hill, without ice axes or winter gear!

The stalker's track up onto the ridge has to rank as one of the easiest ways to climb a hill anywhere.

Thanks for sharing.


Shames on books dismmising Sgurr a’ Mhaoraich it was a lovely hill! I read your walk report scary :crazy: without an ice axe, I think I know the slope you mean we had eyed it up wondering what it would be like under snow. We have been known to take the snow basket of a treking pole and shorten it hoping that a ‘treking pole arrest’ may do something in an emergency :?
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Cairngorm creeper
Scrambler
 
Posts: 695
Munros:144   Corbetts:21
Grahams:6   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:15
Wainwrights:9   
Joined: Jun 4, 2013
Location: Grantown-on-spey

Re: Sgurr a’ Mhaoraich

Postby Alteknacker » Tue Oct 16, 2018 11:36 pm

"Nice to see this one in green.

I walked it in white, and - wusses both - we must have skirted the scrambles, because I have no recollection at all of scrambling. But nonetheless, I thoroughly enjoyed walking the ridge from Sa'M to Sgurr Coire nan Eiricheallach - fantastic views."

I accidentally made the comment on Mal Grey's report instead of yours, having been led to it by your reference... :oops:
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