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Grey Corries anything but grey

Grey Corries anything but grey

Postby Pointless Parasite » Tue Jan 22, 2019 10:45 pm

Munros included on this walk: Sgùrr Chòinnich Mòr, Stob Choire Claurigh, Stob Coire an Laoigh

Date walked: 20/01/2019

Time taken: 9.15 hours

Distance: 31 km

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This is a route I've been thinking about for a long time but was always put off by the distances involved, including a very long approach walk through the forest:

our_route.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts

This isn't the 'standard' route. There were mild avalanche warnings for the North and East facing slopes, so I decided on another approach that involved climbing up the West facing flank of Stob Choire Claurigh. To be honest, there didn't appear to be enough snow for an avalanche, even on the East slopes.

I was staying at Glen Nevis youth hostel and first needed to walk to the station at Fort William get the 7:44 train to Spean Bridge. Arriving just before 8 am, and still well before sunrise, I set off through the forest:

GC Aonach Mor from forest.JPG

There were some felling operations going on but fortunately the route wasn't blocked off. There are many tracks through the forest with many dead ends. The route was long enough as it was without getting lost and needing to back track, so I made frequent referrals to my map.

GC forest approach.JPG

GC dam.JPG

After exiting the forest at a little dam, it was a straightforward, but rather dull climb up onto the shoulder of Stob Choire Claurigh. The route isn't any shorter than the standard route up the other side and doesn't give any views that you don't get from the ridge anyway. I'm not selling this very well am I?

GC ascent.JPG

GC Aonachs from Claurigh.JPG

Once reaching the top of the summit ridge I decided to stop and put on warmer clothing and crampons, and swap my walking poles for an ice axe.

GC Claurigh summit ridge 1.JPG

GC Claurigh East flank.JPG

GC Ceannain.JPG

The final section was an enjoyable mild scramble along an exposed ridge:

GC Claurigh summit ridge.JPG

GC Claurigh summit.JPG

The Easain ridge. If only the weather was as nice as this last November when I climbed these two.

GC Easain ridge.JPG

The Mamores were bathed in golden sunlight all day:

GC Mamores from Claurigh.JPG

Binnean Mor, which I climbed almost exactly one year before:

GC Binnean Mor.JPG

GC Leith.JPG

I thought I could see another couple of climbers coming up Stob Choire Claurigh although after taking a zoomed photo they turned out to be rocks :roll: . I did not see any other signs of life until reaching Steall at the other end of the ridge.

GC Cath na Sine ascent.JPG

Onwards over Caisteal, then Laoigh.

GC Caisteal.JPG

My first proper view of Sgurr Choinnich Mor. What a great mountain! Definitely the best of the three Grey Corries munros, despite being the smallest.

GC Choinnich Mor 1.JPG

GC Choinnich Mor 2.JPG

The descent down to from Stob Coire Easain was a bit scrambly but not as bad as I'd feared from en face photos taken from Choinnich Mor.

GC Choinnich summit ridge.JPG

Looking back over the second munro of the day, Stob Coire an Laoigh:

GC Laoigh from Choinnich.JPG

I had originally planned to descend directly to the glen below but decided to take in one more top, Sgurr Choinnich Beag first. This turned out to rather dull in comparison with the big Choinnich by still worthwhile.

GC Choinnich descent.JPG

GC Stob Ban from Choinnich.JPG

The descent of Sgurr Choinnich Beag down towards Steall was pretty awful. I fell into deep snow on a couple of occasions, though somehow managed to avoid the dreaded 'bog boot'. There were no paths until right down in the glen. I thought I had reached a path at one point but it appeared to be going nowhere and was probably a deer track.

GC descent to Steall.JPG

GC mamores from Choinnich descent.JPG

After reaching Steall it was a huge long walk along the tourist track and then the road to get back to the youth hostel.
31 km from Spean Bridge, plus a 5 km walk to the train station. A pretty epic day but somehow I managed drag myself up another few munros the next day 8)
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Pointless Parasite
Posts: 280
Munros:83   Corbetts:5
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Joined: Apr 9, 2017
Location: Geneva

Re: Grey Corries anything but grey

Postby larry groo » Wed Jan 23, 2019 7:59 am

Fantastic pics there!

:clap: :clap: :clap:
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larry groo
Posts: 557
Joined: Apr 19, 2010
Location: Angus

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