walkhighlands

Share your personal walking route experiences in Scotland, and comment on other peoples' reports.
Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.

Short and steep

Short and steep


Postby kmai1961 » Thu Sep 19, 2019 9:01 am

Route description: Beinn Maol Chaluim, from Glen Etive

Corbetts included on this walk: Beinn Maol Chaluim

Date walked: 17/09/2019

Time taken: 5.25 hours

Distance: 8.7 km

Ascent: 929m

Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

I was driven toward Glen Etive by the spectre of no fewer than seven—SEVEN—hydro plans that have been approved by Highland Council; construction on which may be starting in early 2020, in spite of some rather important logistical and engineering issues apparently having been not yet considered or solved, if I’m to believe what I’ve read. The prospect of this glen looking like Glen Affric has for the past umpteen years is beyond disheartening. :( :evil: :thumbdown: :cry:

I read quite a few reports for all of the Corbetts that are usually accessed from the glen; I picked this one because it seemed like it might be the most straightforward, the shortest, and possibly the least steep. I admit that the others—Stob Dubh, Beinn Mhic Chasgaig, and Beinn Trilleachan—all sound quite intimidating to me.

Image
where I parked ("gravelly layby")

Image
Ben Starav stunning in the sunshine, even from low level

So the WH desc is pretty bang on the money. It’s relentlessly steep from the onset. There are bits and pieces of path, but various options meander all over the place, and when I’d wandered a bit off-piste, looking for easier ground, I then found myself swimming through chest-high bracken that hasn’t yet died off enough.

Image
twin Buachailles behind a wee rocky lump

Image
Starav, Trilleachan, Loch Etive just starting to get in on the act

Image
fab, fab, fab! (Cruachan the pointy one behind Starav)

Image
I think this must be Sgor na h-Udlaidh and ...not sure...maybe Stob an Fhuarain??

There’s very little respite from the “up” until you reach the 848m point and finally set eyes on the summit. Lucky for me, it was a brilliant morning, and the ever-opening up views kept me highly entertained. Nonetheless, my progress was quite slow, which is never a surprise.

Image
the mighty massive bulk of Bidean

It was mighty cold at the summit, the sparkling morning having gone cloudy and dull. After paying due homage to the bulk of Bidean casting its wide shadow, and taking a few (more) photos, I headed down to find a sheltered spot behind a rock where I could have a bite to eat.

Image
where's me sunshine gone to?

Image
the broad ridge leading to (and from) the summit

Image
looking back up the glen toward the Buachailles, which look very different from this angle

Image
one more...little lochan, big loch!

My descent was uneventful…well, except for seeing three men well below me who were ascending toward me…carrying shotguns….whoops! In my defense, I had tried to find stalking information, and the WH site said that current information for the estate would be posted at various access points. I saw none, but in retrospect, I realized that the hill I was climbing is probably not considered a particularly popular access point, and that I probably should have called the estate as well. I made my way down to them, and said that I’d hoped I’d not bunged up their activity. They said it was ok, and asked me if I’d stayed to the ridge (which I had), but the response was gruff, and I got the feeling they weren’t best pleased (with me).

Today's walk didn’t even bring me to my (self-imposed) daily minimum of 15K steps! I’m sure that none of them probably counted as aerobic, either (“aerobic” counting kicks in when quick steps are sustained for a period of time). Nonetheless, I took comfort in knowing that the 14,600-some-odd steps I did take required some effort!

It was a slow and patience-testing homeward journey. I met at least 25 cars on my drive back up the glen to the main road. And as per usual, in this location particularly, most of them seemed unfamiliar with the rules and courtesy guidelines for driving single-track roads. I’m a bit dismayed by how much traffic there’s been on my recent forays—even mid-week, and outwith the school holidays.
kmai1961
Wanderer
 
Posts: 529
Munros:282   Corbetts:112
Grahams:52   Donalds:51
Sub 2000:25   Hewitts:25
Wainwrights:30   Islands:24
Joined: Aug 12, 2012
Location: nr Glasgow

Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).


Walkhighlands community forum is advert free

We need help to keep the site online.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by setting up a monthly donation by direct debit?



Return to Walk reports - Scotland

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Christie22, johnscot55, Scott69, wendylish and 51 guests