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Beinn Dorain and Beinn an Dothaidh

Beinn Dorain and Beinn an Dothaidh


Postby HalfManHalfTitanium » Tue Apr 09, 2019 2:11 pm

Route description: Beinn Dorain and Beinn an Dothaidh, Bridge of Orchy

Munros included on this walk: Beinn an Dothaidh, Beinn Dorain

Date walked: 04/04/2019

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This photo was taken one summer a few years ago, on the way up the A82 to tackle Curved Ridge. It's the image I always have in my mind of Beinn Dorain.

ImageGlencoe 2005 020 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

This TR is about less balmy weather conditions! The MWIS forecast said there would be "70mph easterly winds" and "the mountains are in full winter mode".


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



I set off from the Bridge of Orchy car park. Ahead, a gap in the clouds revealed Coire an Dothaidh. This was the last photo I took for a while, as there was a snowstorm and thick clag for the next few hours.

ImageIMG_0001 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

From the bealach, the path south to Beinn Dorain was hidden under new snow and sastrugi, but navigation by compass along the ridge was fairly easy until I got past Carn Sassunaich.

Visibility was very poor at this point with lots of spindrift. I could make out a downward slope, as expected, due south of the Sassunaich cairn. However it didn't feel quite right somehow. I tested the snow going down into this dip with my poles: it was steeper and deeper than expected.

A close look at the map showed that this dip was in fact the funnel of Feadan Garbh, and that I needed to go a few paces west from Carn Sassunaich to find the continuation ridge. After some wading through deep powder I reached an upward slope and the summit cairn - the visibility improved slightly, so I managed to get a photo of the cairn.

ImageIMG_0002 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

The wind strengthened again, and all my footsteps back to the bealach had already vanished, but finding the way was OK. At the bealach the cloud lifted, just for a few seconds, and I tried a selfie.

ImageIMG_0003 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

I was thinking about Beinn an Dothaidh. The map showed that the upper part of the mountain takes the form of a wide saucer shape, tilted south towards the bealach, with three summits at different places on the saucer rim.

My problem was that, with no path visible, it would be hard to know exactly where I was on the slope above the bealach, in order to get a compass bearing across the featureless saucer to lead me to the main 1004m summit.

Instead, I decided to follow the ridgeline of the saucer rim clockwise. That way, I would definitely come at some point to the main summit.

But as I climbed, the unexpected happened. The clouds opened - this is looking down Glen Orchy.

ImageIMG_0004 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

I quickly headed east and managed to glimpse the view towards Beinn nam Fuaran and upper Glen Lyon. The north-west ridge of Beinn Heasgarnich is just about visible against the dark sky, directly above Loch Lyon.

ImageIMG_0005 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

And then I raced back west to the saucer rim again, and got this shot of the Blackmount, with Beinn Toaig and Stob a'Choire Odhair catching the sun, and part of Loch Tulla.

ImageIMG_0006 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

From that point, I looked up towards the west summit of Beinn an Dothaidh and got this photo just before the cloud closed in again.

ImageIMG_0007 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

There was a nasty squall with lots of lumps of ice in the spindrift.

But, as if on cue, the squall eased and the clag blew away, just as I got near the west summit. A cairn became visible on the edge of the northern cliffs.

ImageIMG_0008 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

There was a larger cairn on an outcrop.

ImageIMG_0009 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

And I had a brief view from the edge of the northern cliffs towards Beinn Achaladair.

ImageIMG_0010 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

The views were visible for about one minute, then there was another blast of bad weather and dense clag as I walked along the undulating ridge to the main 1004m summit.

At first, I thought this would be the only view I would get at the summit cairn...

ImageIMG_0011 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

But then, obligingly, the wind eased and the clouds opened again.

ImageIMG_0011a by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

I quickly took as many photos as I could. This is looking back south to Beinn Dorain.

ImageIMG_0012 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

East to Beinn a'Chuirn/Beinn Mhanach

ImageIMG_0012a by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

South-east to Beinn nam Fuaran and a glimpse of Loch Lyon.

ImageIMG_0012b by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

North-east to Beinn Achaladair and Rannoch Moor

ImageIMG_0013 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

Zoomed photo of the streamlets on Beinn Achaladair

ImageIMG_0014 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

Of course, the clouds again closed in - but this time, I knew my exact location. So I could easily navigate on a compass bearing across the saucer towards the bealach.

Just above the bealach, the cloud cleared yet again - this time, there was more of a respite.

Looking south-west across the saucer

ImageIMG_0015 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

Beinn Dorain

ImageIMG_0016 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

The hills west of Glen Lochay, including Cam Chreag, Beinn Challum and Beinn a' Chaisteil beyond the eastern shoulder of Beinn Dorain

ImageIMG_0017 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

The bealach, and a hint of sunshine

ImageIMG_0018 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

West from the bealach - Glas Bheinn Mhor, Stob Coir'an Albannaich, Meall nan Eun and Loch Dochard

ImageIMG_0018a by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

The descent down Coire an Dothaidh to Bridge of Orchy was an unexpected delight. The sun had come out and I noticed the beautiful Allt Coire an Dothaidh glittering on my right.

ImageIMG_2496 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

I left the slippery and unattractive path and went over to look at the stream.

ImageIMG_2497 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

I found a series of gorgeous waterfalls, just a few yards from the path.

ImageIMG_0019 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

ImageIMG_2499 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

Beinn Udlaidh and its quartzite dyke

ImageIMG_2490 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

There was no way I was going back to that path!

Here are some photos from my "alternative route" back to Bridge of Orchy, along the north bank of Allt Coire an Dothaidh - lots and lots more waterfalls... some of them in a deep slot-like canyon.

ImageIMG_2508 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

ImageIMG_2527 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

ImageIMG_2516 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

ImageIMG_2509 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

Beinn Odhar from where the path crosses the West Highland Way.

ImageIMG_2566 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

A last look back up at Coire an Dothaidh.

ImageIMG_2525 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

In Bridge of Orchy village.

ImageIMG_2575 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

ImageIMG_2578 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr

The Highlands have many magnificent sights, here is one of them.

ImageIMG_2580 by Half Man Half Titanium, on Flickr
Last edited by HalfManHalfTitanium on Thu Apr 18, 2019 1:12 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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HalfManHalfTitanium
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Re: Beinn Dorain - wonderful waterfalls and wintry winds

Postby DizzyVizion » Wed Apr 10, 2019 2:59 pm

I think images 0015 to 0018a are very impressive - they look so dramatic.
Driving up the A82 on a clear enough day, it's like a primal instinct to climb Beinn Dorain.
And great job ploughing on up to the summit in those conditions :clap: I'd say that drink was well earned.
Great report! Brilliant stuff :thumbup:
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Re: Beinn Dorain - wonderful waterfalls and wintry winds

Postby maxie23 » Wed Apr 10, 2019 9:12 pm

Tim

Cracking report, very moody photographs.

Agree with DizzyVizion about the need to climb Beinn Dorian when you see it from that angle, it's almost calling out to you.

Beinn Dorain.jpg
Beinn Dorain
.

Keep up the good work.

Regards.

Robert
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Re: Beinn Dorain - wonderful waterfalls and wintry winds

Postby Hillbeback » Wed Apr 10, 2019 10:28 pm

Hi Tim,

Great photos as usual :clap: Disappointed that we weren't able to meet up this time but looking forward to arranging something in October. Hopefully the weather will be reasonable. I walked Beinn Dorain many years ago. It was a fantastic day with a cloud inversion and snow top mountains. The views were superb.Obviously it wasn't digital cameras then so l have the photos in an album which l look through from time to time.
I await your Ben Starav walk report :wave:

Moira
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Re: Beinn Dorain - wonderful waterfalls and wintry winds

Postby Hillbeback » Wed Apr 10, 2019 11:24 pm

Hillbeback wrote:Hi Tim,

Great photos as usual :clap: Disappointed that we weren't able to meet up this time but looking forward to arranging something in October. Hopefully the weather will be reasonable. I climbed Beinn Dorain many years ago. It was a fantastic day with a cloud inversion and snow top mountains. The views were superb.Obviously it wasn't digital cameras then so l have the photos in an album which l look through from time to time.
I await your Ben Starav walk report :wave:

Moira
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Re: Beinn Dorain - wonderful waterfalls and wintry winds

Postby HalfManHalfTitanium » Thu Apr 11, 2019 3:01 pm

Hillbeback wrote:Hi Tim,

Great photos as usual :clap: Disappointed that we weren't able to meet up this time but looking forward to arranging something in October. Hopefully the weather will be reasonable. I walked Beinn Dorain many years ago. It was a fantastic day with a cloud inversion and snow top mountains. The views were superb.Obviously it wasn't digital cameras then so l have the photos in an album which l look through from time to time.
I await your Ben Starav walk report :wave:

Moira


Thanks Moira!

Sounds like some good photos you have of Beinn Dorain!

Tim
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Re: Beinn Dorain - wonderful waterfalls and wintry winds

Postby HalfManHalfTitanium » Fri Apr 12, 2019 6:13 pm

maxie23 wrote:Tim

Cracking report, very moody photographs.

Agree with DizzyVizion about the need to climb Beinn Dorian when you see it from that angle, it's almost calling out to you.

Beinn Dorain.jpg
.

Keep up the good work.

Regards.

Robert


cheers Robert - and thanks for the great photo of that classic view of Dorain!

Tim
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Re: Beinn Dorain - wonderful waterfalls and wintry winds

Postby HalfManHalfTitanium » Sun Apr 14, 2019 9:02 am

DizzyVizion wrote:I think images 0015 to 0018a are very impressive - they look so dramatic.
Driving up the A82 on a clear enough day, it's like a primal instinct to climb Beinn Dorain.
And great job ploughing on up to the summit in those conditions :clap: I'd say that drink was well earned.
Great report! Brilliant stuff :thumbup:


Cheers DizzyVision. PS Love your video of the Horns of Alligin!

Tim
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