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Cruach Ardrain - so good you climb it (nearly) twice ...

Cruach Ardrain - so good you climb it (nearly) twice ...


Postby 2manyYorkies » Sun Aug 09, 2015 4:39 pm

Route description: Cruach Ardrain and Beinn Tulaichean

Munros included on this walk: Beinn Tulaichean, Cruach Ardrain

Date walked: 07/08/2015

Time taken: 7 hours

Distance: 17.1 km

Ascent: 1380m

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I've always admired Cruach Ardrain, the way it looms over Crianlarich as you drive down from Tyndrum. It looks like a mountain that can handle itself, high and precipitous..

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I was going up from Glen Falloch side, as I had a night's accommodation booked for after near Crianlarich. I arrived late morning after the usual long drive up from Yorkshire, parking in the lay-by off the A82, next to the site works. Starting off at midday exactly I flopped inelegantly over the stile, legs not working yet.... and crossed to the railway underpass using a very swish new graded track put there presumably to keep evil walkers at bay from the works site. From the lay-by:

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After reading tales of doom about the route up through the forest I'd decided to skirt the plantation using the main track. The rickety bridge proved interesting, mainly as the gate across it was secured at both ends, so further inelegance ensued to get round it. A straightforward squelch up onto the Grey Heights and a path skirted up and around, muddy and boggy in bits, sometimes not there at all, but of minor consequence in comparison with the huffing and puffing from the the climb. Once on the heights the views open up all around, with the main prize straight ahead:

Cruach Ardrain:
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Beinn a'Chroin and An Caisteal:
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The track meanders up, down and around, over the lumpy terrain of Meall Dhamh, notable for a few photogenic lochans, and a mild uninspiring descent to the bealach before the climb to Cruach Ardrain.

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It's a steep old pull up along the flank of Cruach Ardrain, sort of spiralling round the mountain, eventually coming out onto a ridge where you turn left/north to the final summit slopes. This path junction is at about 940 metres, turn right/south for Beinn Tulaichean.

To Cruach Ardrain:
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To Beinn Tulaichean:
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I loved the summit of Cruach Ardrain. Great views all around, and peace and quiet. I'd met just one solitary walker on the way up (and I met only two more the whole trip). Could have stayed there a long time, immersed in the surrounding splendour..

Ben More and Stob Binnein with Cruach Ardrain summit cairn:
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Lawers group peeping through the gap:
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Down across Meall Dhamh and Grey Heights to Crianlarich and Strath Fillan beyond:
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Beinn Tulaichean:
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All good things must pass, and after photos and food I took off for Beinn Tulaichean (not literally). A strong body of opinion would class it merely as a Munro Top, but I wasn't complaining about the status, an easy walk led to another excellent viewpoint, seeing the Crianlarich hills from a completely different viewpoint:

Cruach Ardrain, Ben More and Stob Binnein:
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Cruach Ardrain:
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And down to Rob Roy country, Ben Vorlich and Stuc a'Chroin in the distance:
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And now for the flipside... in the absence of another, lower clear bypass path its necessary to re-ascend about three-quarters of the way up Cruach Ardrain, well that's what it felt like anyway. So back up to 940m or so, before the steep drop off the flank of Cruach Ardrain and the brief climb back onto Meall Dhamh.
As ever though, the views, made even better by the early evening light, compensated for the sweat and toil:

Meall Dhamh:
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Beinn Bhuidhe (I think...):
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Ben Lomond:
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And finally down to Glen Falloch:
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Got back to the car about 7:15, hot footed to the B&B, quick shower then up to the RFC in Tyndrum to get the best seat in the house for my fish and chips, with the view back down the road to Cruach Ardrain, best way to end a great day. :D :D
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2manyYorkies
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Re: Cruach Ardrain - so good you climb it (nearly) twice ...

Postby ancancha » Sun Aug 09, 2015 6:31 pm

ok got you, up the same track as me and then hang a left about where I hung a right.
Really nice photos, fabulous clouds in your fourth last photo :!: "Beinn Bhuidhe (I think...):" :clap:
Fish and chips are braw :lol:
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ancancha
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Re: Cruach Ardrain - so good you climb it (nearly) twice ...

Postby rockhopper » Mon Aug 10, 2015 1:08 pm

Good day for it - Friday was certainly seemed the best day over the last week or so - cheers :)
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Re: Cruach Ardrain - so good you climb it (nearly) twice ...

Postby Alteknacker » Mon Aug 10, 2015 3:26 pm

Great report, and some excellent pics. :clap: :clap: :clap: These are really fine characterful hills. I did them at about this time last year, and had reasonable weather (though not as good as you had).

Friday was a great day for weather. I was in the Lawers group at about the time you took your photo - I think you were probably looking at me, but I guess you didn't see me wave.... :wave: (just published the WR today).

One's really had to take one's opportunities for a bit of sunshine in the Highlands this year!
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Alteknacker
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