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Hee-haw but the Corrag Buidhe (and a sea eagle)

Hee-haw but the Corrag Buidhe (and a sea eagle)


Postby EmmaKTunskeen » Mon Apr 22, 2019 10:08 pm

Route description: An Teallach, Dundonnell

Munros included on this walk: Bidein a'Ghlas Thuill (An Teallach), Sgurr Fiona (An Teallach)

Date walked: 19/04/2019

Time taken: 9 hours

Distance: 21 km

Ascent: 1475m

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With conditions so good on Good Friday I grabbed the chance to walk An Teallach, having looked at it from Coigach and Torridon on other occasions. I parked up in the layby by the Dundonnell MR base, booted up and started up the gentle path towards the Meall Garbh ridge.

A delightful start: the sun was shining, the breeze was gentle and pipit and weatear were abundant, busy with their chack-chack calls.

Wheatear territorial games
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I made sure to head for the ridge, picking the cairns of reassurance selectively so I didn't get too close to the burn. The sound of its waterfalls were a joy, complementing the birdsong, and I had all the time in the world to drink it all in (metaphorically speaking - I didn't drain the Allt...). Bidein a'Ghlas Thuill came into view, with tiny patches of snow. I had B2 boots and and spikes in case, though I wasn't expecting to need them.

Little Loch Broom and littler cairn
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First view of Bidein a'Ghlas Thuill
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Allt a Mhuillin waterfalls
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Just beyond the 609m point at Meall Garbh I spotted a handy seat. No thing of beauty, this rock, but extremely comfortable for a coffee.

Sedimentary chair design
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After my coffee, Sgurr Fiona and An Teallach's other tops and ridges started to reveal themselves. Someone was coming up the boggy route as I headed up to Sron a Choire, and if the haze over Little Loch Broom hadn't driven home the message that our views beyond Corrag Buidhe itself were going to be pretty compromised (hence the title - a nod to John McGrath), the haze over the west ridge to Sgurr Ruadh certainly did.

First view of Sgurr Fiona
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Two tops and person for scale
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West ridge - Sgurr Creag an Eich to Sgurr Ruadh
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Haze over the snow-filled Allt a Mhuillin
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As for snow, there was just a patch to cross on Sron a Choire. It was a shame there wasn't more - this was lovely to walk on, soft and thin.

My tracks across Sron a Choire
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And there, a first proper look at An Teallach's pinnacles. Isn't she lovely, fair Fiona!

Fiona pano
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As I was walking up I thought it was surprising I hadn't heard or seen any ravens yet. Then as I rose, heading for Bidean a'Ghlas Thuill, a big bird appeared out of the corrie to my right, Coire Mor an Teallaich. But the sun caught its wings and they looked golden. Wow. Really? It soared up to Sgurr Fiona's jagged peak and once I was at the col between Bidean a'Ghlas Thuill and Sgurr Fiona it seemed to be closer to Sgurr Fiona but still enormous. Double wow - this was sea eagle.

Sea eagle soaring round Sgurr Fiona
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Zoomed...
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..and again.
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After some competitive upstaging by this majestic, elegant bird, Fiona soon reestablished pride of place, and I nipped up the easy last few metres to the trigpoint on Bidean a'Ghlas Thuill.

Lovely Corrag Bhuidhe ridge and Great Wilderness beyond
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Hazy trig view from Bidean a'Ghlas Thuill summit
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Fiona to Sgurr Creag an Eaich - Beinn Dearg Bheag behind trig
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East to Glas Mheall Liath top
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Yet another pinnacles photo
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As I dropped back down to the col and up to Sgurr Fiona, Loch Toll an Lochain was shimmering below like cross-woven shot silk - the photo doesn't do it justice.

Shimmering Loch Toll an Lochain
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Lochan Ruadh was bluah...

NW to Sgurr Ruadh and Lochan Ruadh
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...and it was just all too summery for the Summer Isles.

They're over there somewhere under that haze
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But over towards the Fisherfields, it was all pretty atmospheric.

Beinn a Chlaidhaimh and Fisherfield friends
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:shock:
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Awwww
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Right, that's enough of that... I wasn't going to be pinnacling. The last proper scramble I'd done was Tryfan in October so I didn't feel in practice enough. It was round, up and on to the bypass path round the back for me.

Sandstone tors on Fiona
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Loose sandstone on W side of Fiona
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Ever wondered what the view is from beneath the seat of a lord?

Below the Corrag Bhuidhe pinnacles
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I'm not mad for bypass tracks - not fancied the Liathach one, for example, and the Horns on Alligin were definitely preferable for me, but this one was yet another pleasant walk. I wasn't expecting An Teallach to offer up so many 'pleasant walks'! At least, on this rainless, not very windy day it was a breeze - so to speak. It's a steep drop to Loch na Sealga below, but the path's pretty wide and the only bit where you might scratch your head and knit your brow is coming round towards the last buttress.

Loch na Sealga
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Beinn Dearg Mor still in its shroud
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Approaching the last corner
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Looking back up to Corrag Buidhe
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Going widdershins round An Teallach, as I was, the bypass track is pretty obvious. If you were coming the other way, I suppose the key is to aim higher than your instincts might say - diagonally up to the right (not the edge - left of the edge), not what looks like it might a lower path.

The only downer was that I couldn't really take my eyes of a fire around Airig an Easain. Muirburn? Large-scale? Late? :?:

Fire in the Fisherfields
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Fire zoom
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That fire from Stob Gadha Gobhlach ascent
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It was a quick and easy ascent to Stob Gadha Gobhlach's top, and I liked this little viewpoint a lot.

View back to Munros - with handy person for scale
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Haze, fire and Fisherfield atmosphere
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Sgurr nan Clach Geala and Fannich friends behind Sail Liath
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The descent from Sail Liath looked benign, but it was brutal - bouldery scree and I managed to smash my finger on a slip. Then just the long walk out, stopping to sup from the Allt Glean Caorachain (delicious!), and passing twelve people on their way to Shenavall bothy/camp, some tadpoles and a couple of goats.

Tadpoles
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Goat 1
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Goat 2 - good face
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And finally the last couple of miles of (ugh) road. With a woodpecker to make it cheerier. And boots off - aaaaah.

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User avatar
EmmaKTunskeen
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 133
Munros:23   Corbetts:15
Grahams:9   Donalds:4
Sub 2000:2   Hewitts:41
Wainwrights:41   
Joined: Aug 19, 2016
Location: West Sussex

Re: Hee-haw but the Corrag Buidhe (and a sea eagle)

Postby spiderwebb » Tue Apr 23, 2019 11:17 am

Great day you had there, and the bonus eagle wow !! :D
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spiderwebb
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 1484
Munros:93   Corbetts:15
Grahams:3   Donalds:1
Hewitts:108
Wainwrights:68   
Joined: May 18, 2011
Location: Miltonduff, Elgin

Re: Hee-haw but the Corrag Buidhe (and a sea eagle)

Postby EmmaKTunskeen » Wed Apr 24, 2019 1:06 pm

spiderwebb wrote:Great day you had there, and the bonus eagle wow !! :D


Of course, this is your special compleation hill - I loved your wonderful moving report. And oh my, yes, the bonus eagle - I was very lucky. :D As you cited:
"Natures peace will flow into us; ...
While cares will drop off from us like autumn leaves’
User avatar
EmmaKTunskeen
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 133
Munros:23   Corbetts:15
Grahams:9   Donalds:4
Sub 2000:2   Hewitts:41
Wainwrights:41   
Joined: Aug 19, 2016
Location: West Sussex

Re: Hee-haw but the Corrag Buidhe (and a sea eagle)

Postby Mal Grey » Wed Apr 24, 2019 1:37 pm

Superb. The weather has been so sunny, its great but the haze very noticeable. Still, your photos capture the day perfectly, and I always enjoy the little extra flora and fauna shots that add to the report.

We drove past on Sunday evening, saw the smoke from the fire from miles away. I have a horrible feeling there are going to be lots of fires this year, the tussock grass and heather are utterly bone dry.
User avatar
Mal Grey
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 2792
Munros:110   Corbetts:20
Grahams:8   
Sub 2000:3   Hewitts:113
Wainwrights:71   
Joined: Dec 1, 2011
Location: Surrey, probably in a canoe! www.wildernessisastateofmind.co.uk

Re: Hee-haw but the Corrag Buidhe (and a sea eagle)

Postby HalfManHalfTitanium » Thu Apr 25, 2019 9:33 am

Fabulous photos! Sea eagle was amazing (wheatear photo rather nice too!)
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HalfManHalfTitanium
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 650
Munros:89   Corbetts:10
Grahams:2   Donalds:1
Hewitts:146
Wainwrights:103   
Joined: Mar 11, 2015

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