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2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs


Postby Fife Flyer » Sun Sep 14, 2014 9:51 pm

Route description: Sgurr Mor and the eastern Fannichs

Munros included on this walk: An Coileachan, Beinn Liath Mhor Fannaich, Meall Gorm, Sgurr Mor

Date walked: 13/09/2014

Time taken: 10 hours

Distance: 24 km

Ascent: 1280m

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Yet another outing courtesy of the 'meets' thread, this time Gary (backpacker) is to blame :lol:
After the usual initial conversation a few stragglers appeared out the woodwork, the end result being Karen, Chris & Andy volunteered to join in the fun.
As we are all aware the Fannichs are way up north for us "southerners", so we have a few choices:
Get up in the middle of the night & expect a very, very, very long day :roll: - Me & Karen
Sleep in your car and feel like you slept in the car :lol: - Gary
Stay in a B&B or similar 8) - Nobody
Drive up nice & early camp anywhere after the walk with the intention of more walking the next day :clap: - Chris & Andy.

The plan was to meet Gary at Torrandhu bridge where there is a small car park which at a push can take 6 vehicles 8) at 8am (ish), with the intention of being hillbound by 8.30am at the latest.

DSCF6210.JPG
Car park


So for the 4 of us who opted to sleep in our nice comfy beds with the alarm clocks set for stupid o'clock, we were meeting in Perth & then heading north in a convoy :lol: Due to it still being dark and normal folk still in the land of nod, there was hardly any traffic on the road, the biggest problem was fog/mist, which was especially bad from Fife up to just north of Perth :(
We made good time and had agreed to stop for petrol and a coffee in Inverness and we arrived at the car park at about 8.15am. The kitting up didn't take long because the midges were intent on trying to get their breakfast :lol:
We set off in good spirits and the banter flowed, the main topic of conversation was the weather, no it wasn't really it was the rucksack's. Karen was sporting a nice new girlie purple one and was keen to make sure it was in all the photographs :lol: Chris and Andy had what can only be described as fairly substantial rucksack's that were literally bulging at the seams, the kitchen sinks had been left in Tayside, but everything else was stashed :lol: They had come up with what they thought was a cunning plan. They were planning to camp on the lower slopes of the 2nd Munro Sgurr Mor and the plan was to leave the heavy rucksacks near the summit of Sgurr Mor, return for them after climbing the final 2 Munro's :)
Naturally I had to do the one finger test to find out if they were heavy and nearly broke my index finger, so they were officially heavy :lol: We had only gone about 100yds (well slightly more) before we had to stop for layers to be removed :lol:

DSCF6215.JPG
Early pit stop to remove layers as it was a tad humid

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Note the size of the rucksack, Mr Jepson is hiding behind it


The initial part of the walk was very straight forward following a good track and we knew we were going to have to leave the track and head up Creag Dhubh Fannaich, prior to ascending the first Munro Beinn Liath Mhor Fannaich. The next couple of photo's highlight how navigational decisions were made :lol:

DSCF6219.JPG
No need for an explanation, the faces say it all

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Another stop, Andy cursing his bag, Chris leaning forward in an effort to ease the load, Karen praying & Gary looking on and glad his bag was nice & light


The next photo's highlight how tough the going was ascending, you will also notice the less than ideal weather. There was little or no wind, very hazy or claggy, as a result views were almost non existent :( So as a substitution for views I had to gallop on ahead and take "action" shots of everyone enjoying themselves :lol:

DSCF6230.JPG
Faces of enjoyment?

DSCF6249.JPG
Look everyone Karen's got a new rucksack


One of the main drawbacks of little or no wind was "new" insects certainly to me :( I do remember Black Panther highlighting Keds on one of her walks, I had never heard of them, let alone seen one :wink:
However that was about to change BIG style, these things were even active on or near the summits, for those who have never seen one here is one I took a photo of at great risk to myself :lol:

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The first summit

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Keds? They were in abundance & don't leave your skin easily, you literally have to flick them off!!

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Not the way up or down, thankfully

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A shelter for little people

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Loch a' Mhadaidh and a reflection, just a shame it was so hazy/misty

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I don't think Chris was wanting to be in this photo!!


The first summit was reached, much to the great relief of Chris & Andy - only one more ascent before they would be romping all over the hills :lol: But before the next ascent we had the fairly steep descent off Beinn Liath Mhor Fannaich, we lost the path initially on the descent but our route was far more interesting and challenging, well I thought so :lol:
The next task was the ascent of Sgurr Mor which would be the highest & hardest part of the walk. When you look at the summit from most angles it does look pretty pointy :lol:

DSCF6276.JPG
Summit of Sgurr Mor, my jokes must be good

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Summit cairn not far from the edge

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It's a long way down


Chris and Andy reluctantly took off their rucksacks and sorted out what few things they would need for the next 2 summits and put them in their little bags :lol: The rucksacks were hidden behind a rock just off the summit, the plan was that way they would remember where they were 8)
So we had in theory reached halfway - summit wise, the descent down towards Meall Gorm was over terrain that I had not come across before, the whole ridge was layered almost like huge steps :o

DSCF6286.JPG
Unique stepped broad ridge on the way to Meall Gorm

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Chris posing with his tiny rucksack and admiring the view

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Yet another moment of hilarity, Chris showing off his "new" socks, they even have 'L' and 'R' on the bottom - sorry Chris bit of poetic licence


The summit of Meall Gorm was pretty disappointing and was to be number 160 for me, I added a few more stones to make the cairn a wee bit bigger :lol:

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Final summit of the day An Coileachan, with a nice looking ridge in the background to Garbh Choire Mor

DSCF6315.JPG
Happy bunch of campers, for 3 of us not much more ascending!


The final summit of An Coileachan was for us probably the highlight of the day, mainly because we had much better views and the summit was quite rocky and interesting :wink:
We knew that the descent for us would mean having to say our goodbyes to Andy and Chris, which we duly did :(
I think I may also have mentioned to them that they had 3 peaks to ascend before being re-uinted with their rucksacks :lol: :lol: I may also have mentioned that we didn't have much more ascent before reaching the cars :lol:

DSCF6318.JPG
Looking down before the final descent to Loch nan Eun

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Loch Gorm from a wee bit lower down, the way back to the car is to the right of the Loch


The descent off An Coileachan was much easier than we expected, well I thought it was :lol: We could see the path we were heading for to the east of Loch Gorm, so it was heads down, concentrate on where you are putting your feet and the path was soon reached. On the descent we looked to our left and we could see Sgurr Mor and I may have mentioned how glad I was that I wasn't having to go back that way :lol:

DSCF6332.JPG
A final shot of Sgurr Mor


When we reached the path, it turned out to be slightly better than we expected, mainly because of the recent dry spell. However as is usual with paths, it disappears and re-appears. I would like to think it wasn't my fault (for a change :lol: )
Once we caught site of the bridge we decided to try & head directly towards it, whether that was a good idea or not, we will never know.
The bridge was where I decided to refuel as I was very low on Vimto, so I had to make do with neat fresh water :lol:
We picked up the path on the other side of the burn and knew that it followed the Abhainn a' Ghiubhais Li back to the car park, however Gary came up with the plan to follow the GPS and pick up the track in :clap: So once again we headed across the heather and damp grassy terrain and in due course came across the track. The part of the walk we had not looking forward to was the little slog up the track to the sparsely forested area and this turned out to be torture :( Not only were we knackered but when we were gasping for breath at the top of the incline we were ambushed by the Keds and they were in a determined mood to annoy us and they were very succesful :( Any bare skin was being attacked and although out of breath we had to keep moving. Just thinking of them makes me itch :lol:
I sent Chris a text just before we arrived at the cars & as it transpired Andy & him were re-united with their heavy rucksacks at the same time :clap:
It was now nearing 6.30pm and the next problem was where to eat, we had already been warned by Evie that we were in a culinary desert, so we decided to head for a fast food outlet in Inverness. It's not often I do fast food but it was very welcome, especially as we knew we still had hours travelling down the A9 to endure :(
Karen and I came up with the idea of counting the new average speed camera's to amuse us, for those of you who are interested, there are 23 and they now go all the way from Perth to Inverness :( What a waste of money, but then again politicians are good at that :(

A huge thanks to Karen for driving, it was very good of you to volunteer, you even overtook a few vehicles :lol: :lol:
Thanks to Gary for the original post & suggesting the idea & to Chris and Andy for their great company and keeping me amused :lol: One look at the rucksacks brought a smile to my face and I even offered to take a turn at carrying one :lol: :lol:
Where next :wink:

PS: Almost forgot, we can all look forward to Chris's first ever walk report regarding Sunday's trek :lol:
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby Silverhill » Sun Sep 14, 2014 10:07 pm

Very entertaining read! Who needs views when you're in good company like that! :D
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby Backpacker » Sun Sep 14, 2014 10:15 pm

As ever Martin, a good read.

Glad you took notice of most of the "What happens on the hill, stays on the hill" :lol: :lol:
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby AnnieMacD » Sun Sep 14, 2014 10:42 pm

Great read - glad I didn't have to carry the heavy packs - whew! I think the weather was similar everywhere north of the Great Glen - and the keds :lol:
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby Flump » Mon Sep 15, 2014 12:51 am

Returned home just after 11pm, great weekend although I'm sure my shoulders will be sore for a while. :)

Better weather on the Sunday, got some great inversion pics in the morning and blue skies in the afternoon, if a little hazy.

Image
Sgurr Mor from Sgurr nan Clach Geala

:D
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby jepsonscotland » Mon Sep 15, 2014 2:01 am

Well done on your 160 Martin, another great report. :clap: :clap:
A fantastic day with GREAT company, friendly rapport and 'dynamic' banter. :D :D
Thanks and well done to you all. :clap: :clap:
Looking forward to the next..............

Carrying those packs was worth every ounce of effort to see my first cloud inversion! :shock:
Absolutely, totally amazing. An almost spiritual experience. We were on a high all day. 8)
Now to work on my first walk report..........................
I might need help and photos from Andy. (Flump) Hint, hint.......... :lol: :lol:

Cheers
Chris
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby Fife Flyer » Mon Sep 15, 2014 8:08 am

jepsonscotland wrote:Now to work on my first walk report..........................
I might need help and photos from Andy. (Flump) Hint, hint.......... :lol: :lol:


Had a sneaky look at your balloons, well done to you and Andy I bet you really enjoyed turning them blue :clap: :clap:
I take it the 2 western hills were just a bit too much - especially with all your baggage :lol: :lol:
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby Backpacker » Mon Sep 15, 2014 12:18 pm

jepsonscotland wrote:Well done on your 160 Martin, another great report. :clap: :clap:
A fantastic day with GREAT company, friendly rapport and 'dynamic' banter. :D :D
Thanks and well done to you all. :clap: :clap:
Looking forward to the next..............

Carrying those packs was worth every ounce of effort to see my first cloud inversion! :shock:
Absolutely, totally amazing. An almost spiritual experience. We were on a high all day. 8)
Now to work on my first walk report..........................
I might need help and photos from Andy. (Flump) Hint, hint.......... :lol: :lol:

Cheers
Chris
Flump wrote:Returned home just after 11pm, great weekend although I'm sure my shoulders will be sore for a while. :)

Better weather on the Sunday, got some great inversion pics in the morning and blue skies in the afternoon, if a little hazy.

Image
Sgurr Mor from Sgurr nan Clach Geala

:D


Well done lads
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby kmai1961 » Mon Sep 15, 2014 1:43 pm

Another great report, Martin, thanks for being our token scribe. Chris and Andy, well done on your extra helping.

Me and my purty purple pack both had a smashing time, thanks to all for very enjoyable company.

I think I might be getting too old for 21-hour days!
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby BlackPanther » Mon Sep 15, 2014 3:04 pm

First, congrats on a nice round number. I'm one away from 150 and I've fallen behind with Munros a bit... Possibly because we pick the best, the tastiest Corbetts for autumn walks.

We considered this walk for Saturday actually... But went to Torridon instead.

Fife Flyer wrote:There was little or no wind, very hazy or claggy, as a result views were almost non existent


Well said. The haze was awful! We couldn't see the opposite end of the ridge we were doing :? :? We were also attacked by keds - they land, they try to attach to one's skin, they wriggle and pinch, they MAY bite (argh :shock: ). Luckily, they do not carry Lymes disease, but plucking them out from hair and clothes... disgusting! I have seen a few of them in previous years but they have never been so persistent before! Deet doesn't deter them. Nasty wee buggers :?
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby SAVAGEALICE » Mon Sep 15, 2014 4:00 pm

That is a very nice looking purple bag :D ..ooft 21 hour day! :shock: ..sure cracking through them now Martin!
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby kmai1961 » Mon Sep 15, 2014 4:35 pm

SAVAGEALICE wrote:That is a very nice looking purple bag :D


Thank you, Alice -- I am, obviously, inordinately pleased with the purchase. :D

About those horrible keds (was going to post this on in the wildlife forum, but since it's come up here) -- does anyone know whether they're particularly bad this year, and if so, why? Dry(er than usual) summer, maybe? I'd never heard about them until they started getting mentioned on here a few weeks ago.

And will a couple of hard frosts knock them on the head, like our midgie friends?

There was one on me last night -- the day *after* the Fannichs walk (two showers and a hair wash later). I don't know whether I'd picked it up while working out in the garden, or if it had been on me since the walk (ew, ew, eeeeuuuuch!!)
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby kmai1961 » Mon Sep 15, 2014 6:59 pm

Here's proof that Flyer didn't make the whole thing up (given that he's not in any of the report photos):

boys on sgurr mor, fannichs.jpg
men, men, men, men...
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby Gordie12 » Mon Sep 15, 2014 7:07 pm

Your walking buddies must be so happy to see you walk ahead of them on the climbs then turn round and photograph their pain - what do they say to you???

Experienced the ugly keld myself on Friday near Ullapool but just a few of them - not easy to flick of the arms, must have strong legs for hanging on.

I was interested in your time for these 4 as I'm thinking about doing them before I run out of daylight hours so would need to be soon I suppose.
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Re: 2 x Kitchen Sinks for the Eastern Fannichs

Postby tina bonar » Mon Sep 15, 2014 7:38 pm

Another interesting read Martin.Well done folks on what was a fair old day :clap:
We were thinking about you all when we had a fairly short trip to Kinlochleven.We left Montrose at 3 a.m, started walking at 6.30 and were home at a very civilised 6.50 p.m with a touch of sunburn
Keds were out in force in the Mamores and i found a tick after my swim yesterday morning :shock:
Oh we do enjoy a good walk :D
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