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.

Eastern Mamores

Eastern Mamores


Postby Silverhill » Sat Mar 29, 2014 8:37 pm

Route description: Sgurr Eilde Mor and Binnein Beag, Mamores

Munros included on this walk: Binnein Beag, Binnein Mor, Na Gruagaichean, Sgurr Eilde Mor

Date walked: 08/06/2013

Time taken: 11 hours

Distance: 18.4 km

Ascent: 1987m

1 person thinks this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).


Sgurr Eilde Mor, Binnein Beag, Binnein Mor and Na Gruagaichean.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts


The Mamores had kept me nicely entertained during last winter’s long and dark evenings. What fun to plan various combinations. Doing the whole range in one day would be a superb challenge. Although very tempting, it would probably also cut my bagging holiday short! In the end I decided to go for the 4-4-2 option spread over three days, starting with the 4 Eastern Mamores.

It could not have been a better day. Sunny and a good chance of cloud free summits, for the 5th consecutive day! :D I parked the car at the church in Kinlochmore. The start of the route wasn’t entirely clear to me, so I hoped that the map on the car park notice board would shed some light on this. Alas, it didn’t. None the wiser I started walking, map and compass at the ready. The walk description didn’t seem to match the situation on the ground and after a few false starts and retracing my steps I decided to follow a path eastwards and hope that somewhere another path would branch off in a northeasterly direction. Which of course did not happen. How handy would my GPS have been now. Sadly, it was still dead.
After a while I saw a group of 4 guys walking towards me from the opposite direction. They remarked that, if I wanted to bag some munros today, I should not continue along this path. Well, at least I wasn’t the only one here struggling in the route finding department. I tagged along and with the help of their working GPS we got onto the right path eventually.

DSCF4395 smaller.jpg
Hazy view towards Loch Leven and the Pap of Glencoe

They had travelled up from Blackpool yesterday, doing 3 munros today and would travel back tomorrow. With banter flying left right and centre the walk up to the Loch Eilde Mor track progressed nicely. From there the real work was about to start with the climb up Coire an Lochain, first on gentle slopes then steepening gradually. As they were headed for Binnein Beag we said our goodbyes here, after they insisted that I join them at the Clachaig Inn in the evening.
Then I caught up with a walker who was staying at the same bunkhouse as me and we continued to Sgurr Eilde Mor together, after a short snack break at the lochan. What a magical place! 8)

DSCF4398 smaller.jpg
In Coire an Lochain with Aonach Beag in the far distance

The way up was very entertaining, even though it was steep, finding a way up across the big boulders. Definitely a thigh buster, but so much worth it. The views from the summit were staggering!

DSCF4399 smaller.jpg
Summit Sgurr Eilde Mor

DSCF4405 smaller.jpg
Binnein Mor, Binnein Beag and Ben Nevis

DSCF4410 smaller.jpg
The lochan, Sgor Eilde Beag and in the far distance Na Gruagaichean

My fellow walker decided to stay a bit longer on the summit, so we said our goodbyes. For the descent route I continued a short bit along its west ridge, from where a steep gravelly path initially goes NW then WNW. This was extremely unpleasant. Best way was to sit on my backside and shuffle down, and even then I had to be careful not to tumble down. Lower down there was still scree left on the slope, which made the going much easier. At least you could dig in your heels and slide-step down.

The bealach at the lochan is a wonderful viewpoint, with the deep Coire a’Bhinnein giving the views a lot of perspective.
The path down is in good condition, albeit a bit steep for the first section. It levels out as you contour the lower slopes of Binnein Mor to the lochan below Binnein Beag. Here I ditched my rucksack for a quickie up Binnein Beag. It was great to have the freedom of movement without the weight of the bag. On the ascent I was passed by a guy who literally sprinted up. On the summit we had a wee chat. He was doing all of the Mamores today, this was his 9th and it was only 2.00pm! He said he’d just fancied a run today!

DSCF4417 smaller.jpg
Summit Binnein Beag with the Ring of Steall in the background

DSCF4416 smaller.jpg
Binnein Mor from Binnein Beag

A bit more care was needed on the downhill leg, but it all went smoothly. A snack at the lochan and then onwards to Binnein Mor.
Sron a’ Gharbh Choire looked very steep and rough so I went for the easy option (so I thought), via the lochans up the northwest ridge onto a path. Part of the path was covered in ice which I thought was best avoided. As a result I got stuck on a very steep wet slope. It was too steep for walking and too smooth and slippery for crawling. Tried to dig my toes in. Splat! Flat on my front. Turn over. OMG, that was much worse, what a bad move! Try digging the heels in. Still no grip. OK, dig the nails in, sit still and don’t panic.
Frustratingly, the path was really close. I sat for a while, trying to relax and get the adrenaline out of my legs and arms. Then had another go. A kind of sideways flop-over, which didn’t look pretty, got me onto slightly flatter ground and from there I managed to crawl onto the path. In less than a minute I was on the main northwest ridge, feeling a bit shaky.

DSCF4421 smaller.jpg
Binnein Beag from the northwest ridge of Binnein Mor

This ridge is lovely, well defined and quite sharp with some boulders and rocky bits higher up. Normally I would have enjoyed scrambling up, but my jelly legs did not afford me that pleasure. It was only after a break at the summit of Binnein Mor, admiring the views, that the legs got back to their normal state.

DSCF4429 smaller.jpg
Summit Binnein Mor

DSCF4428 smaller.jpg
View towards the Blackwater Reservoir

DSCF4433 smaller.jpg
Na Gruagaichean from pt 1062

The walk from Binnein Mor to Na Gruagaichean along the sweeping ridge was superb. The hills for tomorrow and the day after seemed within touching distance. Great views over to Sgurr Eilde Mor and Loch Eilde Mor. 8) After just one hour I was on the summit of Na Gruagaichean. I had fun trying to get myself in a picture using the self-timer. Three unsuccessful efforts. Another walker who had also arrived on the summit offered to take a picture, which turned out much better (thank you, if you read this.) He was doing all 10 Mamores today. We had a brief chat before each continuing our way.

DSCF4434 smaller.jpg
Looking back to Binnein Mor from Na Gruagaichean

DSCF4436 smaller.jpg
Summit Na Gruagaichean

DSCF4441 smaller.jpg
Loch Leven, Pap of Glencoe and Beinn a' Bheithir

DSCF4442 smaller.jpg
Ben Nevis from Na Gruagaichean

DSCF4443 smaller.jpg
Am Bodach left, the Devil's Ridge in the distance and Sgurr a' Mhaim right of centre

DSCF4444 smaller.jpg
Binnein Mor again

The descent route was along the ridge to Leachd na h-Aire, very easy and enjoyable.

DSCF4447 smaller.jpg
Last view towards Loch Eilde Mor and the Blackwater Reservoir before heading down

Then southwest down pathless uniformly steep slopes with the occasional crag to be avoided. It wasn’t the most pleasant descent, but sometimes you’ve just got to bear and get on with it! I found some distraction in watching the hordes of miniature mountain bikers on the Loch Eilde Mor track below.Glad to finally get onto the track. I turned right along it and then left down a path at the viewpoint bench.

DSCF4448 smaller.jpg
View from the bench towards Loch Leven

By this time I was feeling the effects of having been out in the sun all day and was looking forward to the cooling shade of the woods further down.

DSCF4449 smaller.jpg
Cooling pastures

After another left turn the path soon leads to the lovely wood. The bluebells were out en masse and the ground was dappled with sunlight. Just magical. As a bonus I found out where I (and doubtless many before me) had taken a wrong turn in the morning. There is always another time to rectify this! :D
Last edited by Silverhill on Thu May 01, 2014 9:44 pm, edited 2 times in total.
User avatar
Silverhill
 
Posts: 1243
Munros:279   Corbetts:3
Joined: Jan 13, 2013

Re: Eastern Mamores

Postby ere1 » Sat Mar 29, 2014 9:43 pm

Silverhill wrote:Still catching up on trip reports of last summer….

Sgurr Eilde Mor, Binnein Beag, Binnein Mor and Na Gruagaichean.gpx

The Mamores had kept me nicely entertained during last winter’s long and dark evenings. What fun to plan various combinations. Doing the whole range in one day would be a superb challenge. Although very tempting, it would probably also cut my bagging holiday short! In the end I decided to go for the 4-4-2 option spread over three days, starting with the 4 Eastern Mamores.

It could not have been a better day. Sunny and a good chance of cloud free summits, for the 5th consecutive day! :D I parked the car at the church in Kinlochmore. The start of the route wasn’t entirely clear to me, so I hoped that the map on the car park notice board would shed some light on this. Alas, it didn’t. None the wiser I started walking, map and compass at the ready. The walk description didn’t seem to match the situation on the ground and after a few false starts and retracing my steps I decided to follow a path eastwards and hope that somewhere another path would branch off in a northeasterly direction. Which of course did not happen. How handy would my GPS have been now. Sadly, it was still dead.
After a while I saw a group of 4 guys walking towards me from the opposite direction. They remarked that, if I wanted to bag some munros today, I should not continue along this path. Well, at least I wasn’t the only one here struggling in the route finding department. I tagged along and with the help of their working GPS we got onto the right path eventually.

DSCF4395 smaller.jpg

They had travelled up from Blackpool yesterday, doing 3 munros today and would travel back tomorrow. With banter flying left right and centre the walk up to the Loch Eilde Mor track progressed nicely. From there the real work was about to start with the climb up Coire an Lochain, first on gentle slopes then steepening gradually. As they were headed for Binnein Beag we said our goodbyes here, after they insisted that I join them at the Clachaig Inn in the evening.
Then I caught up with a walker who was staying at the same bunkhouse as me and we continued to Sgurr Eilde Mor together, after a short snack break at the lochan. What a magical place! 8)

DSCF4398 smaller.jpg

The way up was very entertaining, even though it was steep, finding a way up across the big boulders. Definitely a thigh buster, but so much worth it. The views from the summit were staggering!

DSCF4399 smaller.jpg

DSCF4405 smaller.jpg

DSCF4410 smaller.jpg

My fellow walker decided to stay a bit longer on the summit, so we said our goodbyes. For the descent route I continued a short bit along its west ridge, from where a steep gravelly path initially goes NW then WNW. This was extremely unpleasant. Best way was to sit on my backside and shuffle down, and even then I had to be careful not to tumble down. Lower down there was still scree left on the slope, which made the going much easier. At least you could dig in your heels and slide-step down.

The bealach at the lochan is a wonderful viewpoint, with the deep Coire a’Bhinnein giving the views a lot of perspective.
The path down is in good condition, albeit a bit steep for the first section. It levels out as you contour the lower slopes of Binnein Mor to the lochan below Binnein Beag. Here I ditched my rucksack for a quickie up Binnein Beag. It was great to have the freedom of movement without the weight of the bag. On the ascent I was passed by a guy who literally sprinted up. On the summit we had a wee chat. He was doing all of the Mamores today, this was his 9th and it was only 2.00pm! He said he’d just fancied a run today!

DSCF4417 smaller.jpg

DSCF4416 smaller.jpg

A bit more care was needed on the downhill leg, but it all went smoothly. A snack at the lochan and then onwards to Binnein Mor.
Sron a’ Gharbh Choire looked very steep and rough so I went for the easy option (so I thought), via the lochans up the northwest ridge onto a path. Part of the path was covered in ice which I thought was best avoided. As a result I got stuck on a very steep wet slope. It was too steep for walking and too smooth and slippery for crawling. Tried to dig my toes in. Splat! Flat on my front. Turn over. OMG, that was much worse, what a bad move! Try digging the heels in. Still no grip. OK, dig the nails in, sit still and don’t panic.
Frustratingly, the path was really close. I sat for a while, trying to relax and get the adrenaline out of my legs and arms. Then had another go. A kind of sideways flop-over, which didn’t look pretty, got me onto slightly flatter ground and from there I managed to crawl onto the path. In less than a minute I was on the main northwest ridge, feeling a bit shaky.

DSCF4421 smaller.jpg

This ridge is lovely, well defined and quite sharp with some boulders and rocky bits higher up. Normally I would have enjoyed scrambling up, but my jelly legs did not afford me that pleasure. It was only after a break at the summit of Binnein Mor, admiring the views, that the legs got back to their normal state.

DSCF4429 smaller.jpg

DSCF4428 smaller.jpg

DSCF4433 smaller.jpg

The walk from Binnein Mor to Na Gruagaichean along the sweeping ridge was superb. The hills for tomorrow and the day after seemed within touching distance. Great views over to Sgurr Eilde Mor and Loch Eilde Mor. 8) After just one hour I was on the summit of Na Gruagaichean. I had fun trying to get myself in a picture using the self-timer. Three unsuccessful efforts. Another walker who had also arrived on the summit offered to take a picture, which turned out much better (thank you, if you read this.) He was doing all 10 Mamores today. We had a brief chat before each continuing our way.

DSCF4434 smaller.jpg

DSCF4436 smaller.jpg

DSCF4441 smaller.jpg

DSCF4442 smaller.jpg

DSCF4443 smaller.jpg

DSCF4444 smaller.jpg

The descent route was along the ridge to Leachd na h-Aire, very easy and enjoyable.

DSCF4447 smaller.jpg

Then southwest down pathless uniformly steep slopes with the occasional crag to be avoided. It wasn’t the most pleasant descent, but sometimes you’ve just got to bear and get on with it! I found some distraction in watching the hordes of miniature mountain bikers on the Loch Eilde Mor track below.Glad to finally get onto the track. I turned right along it and then left down a path at the viewpoint bench.

DSCF4448 smaller.jpg

By this time I was feeling the effects of having been out in the sun all day and was looking forward to the cooling shade of the woods further down.

DSCF4449 smaller.jpg

After another left turn the path soon leads to the lovely wood. The bluebells were out en masse and the ground was dappled with sunlight. Just magical. As a bonus I found out where I (and doubtless many before me) had taken a wrong turn in the morning. There is always another time to rectify this! :D


Hi Silverhill. Good stuff!
User avatar
ere1
Walker
 
Posts: 190
Munros:50   Corbetts:1
Joined: Mar 23, 2013
Location: Rijswijk, The Netherlands

Re: Eastern Mamores

Postby Silverhill » Mon Mar 31, 2014 11:11 pm

Thanks ere1! :D They are great hills. This trip was one of the highlights of last year.
User avatar
Silverhill
 
Posts: 1243
Munros:279   Corbetts:3
Joined: Jan 13, 2013

Re: Eastern Mamores

Postby rockhopper » Tue Apr 01, 2014 1:37 pm

That did look a nice day to get some great views - an area to which I'd like to return having seen almost nothing when up there the first time round :roll: - cheers :)
User avatar
rockhopper
 
Posts: 6183
Munros:282   Corbetts:186
Grahams:58   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:8   Hewitts:2
Wainwrights:3   
Joined: Jun 1, 2009
Location: Glasgow

Re: Eastern Mamores

Postby Silverhill » Wed Apr 02, 2014 8:21 pm

Thanks Rockhopper! I read your report of these hills and was impressed by your tenacity to do all 10 despite the murk. :clap: You must return on a nice day, they are so much worth it! 8)
User avatar
Silverhill
 
Posts: 1243
Munros:279   Corbetts:3
Joined: Jan 13, 2013

Re: Eastern Mamores

Postby simon-b » Wed Apr 02, 2014 9:16 pm

What a great day that was, Silverhill. It's always nice when you get the views. My first two cloud free Munros were my 6th and 7th, the Aonachs Beag and Mor, with nice views of the Mamores, of course - the first time I'd seen them.

A fine report.
User avatar
simon-b
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1893
Munros:282   Corbetts:30
Grahams:7   Donalds:12
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:156
Wainwrights:214   
Joined: Jan 2, 2012
Location: Wakefield, West Yorkshire

Re: Eastern Mamores

Postby Silverhill » Thu Apr 03, 2014 7:06 pm

Thank you Simon! :D
Ah yes, I’ve got plenty of those in my modestly sized munro bag. Hills I know I have been on, but which I haven’t seen. On the upside, this means there is life after compleation (though still far away for me): I’ll have to return! :lol:
User avatar
Silverhill
 
Posts: 1243
Munros:279   Corbetts:3
Joined: Jan 13, 2013

1 person thinks this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).



Walkhighlands community forum is now 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: No registered users and 27 guests