With Malky’s Birthmas falling on a Saturday this year, and despite his work night out being the night before, he was able to celebrate with hills. Even better the sun was shining! We had a typically shambolic start by not getting up early enough and although we were heading for Sail Mhor we realised that not only would we never have time to complete that walk in the daylight now available, but the weather also now looked better further east.
So we stopped driving and opted for the wee Corbett with a big name – Beinn Liath Mhor a’ Ghiubhais Li. Not the most interesting hill to look at but situated in a place that I thought might have some spectacular views. We were not to be disappointed
A taster of what's to come
Initially an easy walk along a forest track, gradually climbing upwards and with a river crossing that wasn’t as bad as it looked
Our hill ahead
Sun's coming out...
Looked like we would get some good views of the Fannaichs anyway
The track dropped annoyingly downhill for a section but we figured it would be better to stay on it until we had cleared the forest to avoid tramping through more bad ground than we needed to!
Starting to get some views of the Eastern Fannaichs, hills I hadn’t been near yet
We reached the end of the track at a gate. The ground became a bit squishy underfoot but it continued in some form of fairly indistinct path into the heather.
The track deteriorates
From here we started to climb more steeply although the ground wasn’t too bad for the most part and the views continued to improve
Beinn Dearg & pals
The gradient eased for a short section; unfortunately we also had a few peat hags to deal with
Out on the open hillside
The final steep section had some snow patches and boulders to make it a bit more interesting….the snow was a bit like wet sugar so we kept falling in
Some sun breaking through
Beinn Dearg hills
Sgurr Mor and central Fannaichs
An Teallach was almost clear – maybe we should have got up earlier and gone further west
An Teallach with a wee bit of fluff
The peat hags we just plodded through
A wee ptarmigan
At last we were on the summit plateau – and it was windy!
Loch Glascarnoch and Ben Wyvis
An Teallach - ooft
Beinn Dearg and Cona Meall
Some birthmas lights for birthmas boy
Malky the red nosed Reindeer
Malky thinking about the enormous flock of sheep I got him for his birthmas
He's almost smiling!
Summit of the hill with the long name
Cona Meall and Seana Bhraigh
Beinn Dearg, Cona Meall and Seana Bhriagh
Loch Glascarnock and Beinn Wyvis
Carn Cuinneag & Beinn a' Chaisteal
Last one, promise
Sunset was approaching so we figured we better get going!
Time to go!
Evening light on the Fannaichs
Sunny snowy glow
Evening light on the Deargs
Bit of light hitting An Teallach
Sun setting behind An Coileachan
Wee bit of fluff hitting the top
Beinn Ghoblach and the tip of Loch Broom b
Leaving the peat hags behind
We decided to cut off the extra loop as Malky had spied a gate in the fence and what looked like an ATV track. Unlike many of his shortcuts it actually turned out to be a good idea!
Malky leading the way
Sky going wild
The ATV track was pretty boggy but it led us safely through the forestry and back to our outward route, including the river crossing!
Forgot about this!!
A last view of magnificent An Teallach
Back at the car we decided we couldn’t really be bothered with the thought of cooking dinner, so popped into the Allengrange Arms in Munlochy (can highly recommend the burgers) on the way home. I even offered to drive home from there so he could have a birthmas pint
Once home we had the small matter of a sparkler birthday cake (when we were on Skye at Easter we saw someone with a sparkler cake and when Malky sadly told me that he’d never had one I promised to make him one )
Birthmas sparkler cake
Not a bad birthmas afterall
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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.