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It's No Fun on Beinn nan Eun

It's No Fun on Beinn nan Eun


Postby Christo1979 » Wed Sep 04, 2019 1:25 pm

Grahams included on this walk: Uamh Bheag

Donalds included on this walk: Beinn nan Eun, Uamh Bheag

Date walked: 02/09/2019

Time taken: 8 hours

Distance: 30.4 km

Ascent: 1005m

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I'm attempting to climb all 140 Donalds and Donald Tops in aid of charity. 'Donalds for Donald' is a personal challenge in memory of my late father, Donald, and in aid of Mesothelioma UK. After the round in this report, my total is currently 36/140, and I aim to complete them by 15th November (his birthday). I'd better get walking...

Apologies for the distinct lack of photos in this report. Sadly my phone (rugged case and all) sustained damage and, having lasted just long enough to record my route on Viewranger, died - along with photos and videos. If it ever recovers, I'll edit the post to include images of this rather hellish day.


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



The weather forecasts were not great (again) but I had earmarked 2nd September to tackle the most Northerly of the Donalds, and found myself in Callander on the evening of 1st September. The river was high, the rain was heavy, but the hills seemed relatively mist-free and Ben Ledi looked enticing. The next morning, the rain was heavier and Ben Ledi had disappeared from view altogether. Such would be the day, really. Anyway, I was heading East out of Callander to tackle Uamh Bheag and Beinn nan Eun. I left the main road just after Keltie Bridge campsite, and headed up the little road, which in turn gave way to the farm track leading through and beyond Middle Bracklinn farm. The track came to an end at about the 350m contour, after which it was straight up the hillside to the bealach between Uamh Mhòr and Uamh Bheag, before following the fence line straight up to the summit of the latter. The wind was howling and I could barely stand, opting to cling onto the wire fence most of the time, the rain was driving, and the mist was thick. I did manage to say hello to the little wooden fella at the summit, before plodding on and across to the Donald Top of Meall Clacach.

ImageBen Ledi from Callander by Christopher Watson, on Flickr

ImageUamh Bheag and Beinn nan Eun by Christopher Watson, on Flickr

Unable to see very much at all, and already feeling the substantial wind chill, it was on with pretty much all my extra layers and across into the hell that is the no-man's land beyond Uamh Bheag. I stopped at the East Top and wandered across to pt.664 to ensure I'd covered all bagging bases, then descended quite steeply beyond the cairns and up an over to Beinn Odhar. I'd seen pictures of the peat hags around here, but with the foul weather they were even worse than I had anticipated. I'm gutted to have lost the photos of this treacherous no-man's land. Reaching the barren summit of Beinn Odhar and then trudging across to the final peak of the day, Beinn nan Eun, gave little sense of reward or comfort, and all I could focus on was getting off these hills :lol:

ImageUamh Bheag and Beinn nan Eun by Christopher Watson, on Flickr

Something of a test of endurance and navigation, it took some time to get from the summit and negotiate the tortuous hags on the way to the wind farm. After slipping down and dragging myself up the sides of the 'trenches' I opted to try and walk as much as I could along the wet 'highways' in between, instead. A trying walk in good weather perhaps, this was absolute hell on this particular day. My bearings told me I should almost be in touching distance of the targeted wind turbine, but the mist was so thick I couldn't see it until I was just metres away. I heard it a long time before I saw it!

I don't think I've ever been so glad to see a wind farm track (normally I'd want to avoid them) but making it to the start of the road at about the 540m contour was almost a pleasure too far :lol:

My phone was struggling after suffering some damage on the hill, but lasted just long enough to record my track. After what seemed like a lifetime on the road through the wind farm and down through forest and farmland, I made it to Buchany on the A84 and was delighted to discover a bus would be coming along shortly. Any ideas about camping and tackling some of the bigger hills the following day went out of the window, and a slightly traumatised, wet, walker descended on the hostel in Callander.

In just a few days time its back to Scotland to continue on this Donalds journey. Wish me luck :lol:
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Christo1979
Walker
 
Posts: 220
Munros:15   Corbetts:40
Grahams:35   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:101   Hewitts:154
Wainwrights:175   Islands:25
Joined: Oct 21, 2017
Location: Gateshead

Re: It's No Fun on Beinn nan Eun

Postby Sgurr » Wed Sep 04, 2019 5:44 pm

Sounds as if you will have to dedicate all your weekends good and bad to this challenge if you are to make it by his birthday. Good Luck. Do you have a "Just Giving" page, or are you waiting until you are done? We met a friend of Doddy Weir's daughters training for a three peaks challenge on my final Donald. They raised a shed load of money. Some of it from us, as she came running back with my GPS that I had left on a cairn " I thought it'll be theirs....they're old and will have all the safety stuff."He has motor neurone disease. I don't know which I would pick if I was told I could just avoid one.
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Sgurr
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 4375
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:219   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:569   Hewitts:139
Wainwrights:160   Islands:58
Joined: Nov 15, 2010
Location: Fife

Re: It's No Fun on Beinn nan Eun

Postby iangpark » Wed Sep 04, 2019 5:47 pm

Well I recall malcy_c mentioning that he doubts we'd ever see a route of these two done in the same way as my report, but here it is! Props on braving it out as it's a brutal route. Hope you're leaving the best until last!
User avatar
iangpark
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 277
Munros:23   Corbetts:15
Grahams:24   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:60   Hewitts:13
Wainwrights:15   Islands:9
Joined: Dec 29, 2015
Location: Greenock

Re: It's No Fun on Beinn nan Eun

Postby Christo1979 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 11:06 am

Sgurr wrote:Sounds as if you will have to dedicate all your weekends good and bad to this challenge if you are to make it by his birthday. Good Luck. Do you have a "Just Giving" page, or are you waiting until you are done? We met a friend of Doddy Weir's daughters training for a three peaks challenge on my final Donald. They raised a shed load of money. Some of it from us, as she came running back with my GPS that I had left on a cairn " I thought it'll be theirs....they're old and will have all the safety stuff."He has motor neurone disease. I don't know which I would pick if I was told I could just avoid one.


Thank you! You're right, I'm planning to be out pretty much every week/weekend to get this done. I'm doing it all by public transport, too, which adds an extra challenge...I have set up a Justgiving page, which is http://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/donaldsfordonald I'm always amazed at just how many hills you have climbed!
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Christo1979
Walker
 
Posts: 220
Munros:15   Corbetts:40
Grahams:35   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:101   Hewitts:154
Wainwrights:175   Islands:25
Joined: Oct 21, 2017
Location: Gateshead

Re: It's No Fun on Beinn nan Eun

Postby Christo1979 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 11:09 am

iangpark wrote:Well I recall malcy_c mentioning that he doubts we'd ever see a route of these two done in the same way as my report, but here it is! Props on braving it out as it's a brutal route. Hope you're leaving the best until last!


Cheers! It was certainly a challenge, I'm not sure I'd wish the route on my worst enemy :lol: I'm looking forward to some longer rounds, especially in Galloway. Any tips on a good final summit?
User avatar
Christo1979
Walker
 
Posts: 220
Munros:15   Corbetts:40
Grahams:35   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:101   Hewitts:154
Wainwrights:175   Islands:25
Joined: Oct 21, 2017
Location: Gateshead

Re: It's No Fun on Beinn nan Eun

Postby Sgurr » Thu Sep 05, 2019 11:09 am

Being retired helps your hill total and staying fit (which is partly luck). I had only done 16 Munros before I was a granny (at 52) so most have been done when I have been a lot older than you. Visited your page.
User avatar
Sgurr
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 4375
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:219   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:569   Hewitts:139
Wainwrights:160   Islands:58
Joined: Nov 15, 2010
Location: Fife

Re: It's No Fun on Beinn nan Eun

Postby iangpark » Thu Sep 05, 2019 12:59 pm

Christo1979 wrote:
iangpark wrote:Well I recall malcy_c mentioning that he doubts we'd ever see a route of these two done in the same way as my report, but here it is! Props on braving it out as it's a brutal route. Hope you're leaving the best until last!


Cheers! It was certainly a challenge, I'm not sure I'd wish the route on my worst enemy :lol: I'm looking forward to some longer rounds, especially in Galloway. Any tips on a good final summit?


I'd have to agree haha! Canny beat Galloway in my opinion (just about any terminus Donald there is perfect for a finale) but I think my final will end up being Lochcraig Head!
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iangpark
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 277
Munros:23   Corbetts:15
Grahams:24   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:60   Hewitts:13
Wainwrights:15   Islands:9
Joined: Dec 29, 2015
Location: Greenock

Re: It's No Fun on Beinn nan Eun

Postby Christo1979 » Sun Sep 08, 2019 1:42 pm

Sgurr wrote:Being retired helps your hill total and staying fit (which is partly luck). I had only done 16 Munros before I was a granny (at 52) so most have been done when I have been a lot older than you. Visited your page.


Thank you so much for your donation and support :)
User avatar
Christo1979
Walker
 
Posts: 220
Munros:15   Corbetts:40
Grahams:35   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:101   Hewitts:154
Wainwrights:175   Islands:25
Joined: Oct 21, 2017
Location: Gateshead

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