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Slioch, the gift that keeps on giving

Slioch, the gift that keeps on giving

Postby snowdonia7 » Mon Nov 18, 2019 10:44 pm

Route description: Slioch, near Kinlochewe

Munros included on this walk: Slioch

Date walked: 16/11/2019

Time taken: 6.05 hours

Distance: 19 km

Ascent: 1298m

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Whilst the forecast for Saturday was quite good we knew there would be a fair bit of snow on high ground, and the suggested walk time on WH was 8-9 hours in summer conditions we thought we'd best make an early start.
So after a night in the van in Kinlochewe we were well placed to get moving before sunrise, and at 07.35 we set off from the car park.

The ground underfoot was quite firm, but didn’t seem to be frozen as hard as it had been at Ben Wyvis the day before, which made me think it might be boggy on the return if the sun thawed the ground any more.
But we'd deal with that later, in the first instance we just ambled along the track as the sun came up, passing within metres of a group of deer. When we got to the bridge, we had been walking for about an hour, which I thought I remembered was about the time most people reported, didn’t reach the bridge for an hour, which reinforced my belief that we might be out for about 8 hours.

We followed the route as described in WH, not really stopping until we reached the two lochans. Strangely the most easterly lochan was frozen solid, whilst it’s near neighbour was ice free. After a bite to eat and a drink by the lochans we followed the zigzag paths up the steep climb. After a couple of minutes I looked south and had my first view towards Torridon and actually stopped in my tracks and said “Wow!”. The snow clad peaks and clear sky looked amazing, and from the on I couldn’t help myself from looking back every few minutes as we climbed further bringing an ever more expansive vista into view. I knew the battery on my phone was not at full charge, so decided to wait until I topped out to take photos of the views.

At the top I started with a selfie, and then tried to change to video to take a panorama, but the cold had obviously got to my phone and it shut down. Fortunately Neil got a couple of good shots, although nothing short of a professional camera could do justice to what the eye sees.

Slich SE top with Neil2.jpg
Slich SE top with Neil

Taking a selfie on Slioch SE top

After the photo session we headed to the trig point whete we stopped again, this time for some lunch, although in the space of a few minutes the sun went behind some dark clouds and the temperature dropped noticeably.
We pressed on then to the true summit and continued over the east ridge, before descending back to to join the initial line of ascent.

We got back to the car at 1.40, so in retrospect had no reason to have started so early, but at least we could call at the shop in Kinlochewe to stock up on provisions. Unfortunately, the shop shuts at noon on Saturday and the petroleum station was also shut :thumbdown: So we drove to our next overnight stop at Achnasheen ready to do Fionn Bheinn the next day. On arrival we decided to refresh at the Ledgowan hotel, and thankfully found the bar was open when we arrived at 3.30. The only downside was the food orders didn't start until 6.30, so we had to moderate our rehydration :-D
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