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.

Blown away on Bynack More

Blown away on Bynack More


Postby BlackPanther » Wed Oct 10, 2018 4:05 pm

Route description: Bynack More from Glenmore

Munros included on this walk: Bynack More

Date walked: 29/09/2018

Time taken: 5.5 hours

Distance: 20.3 km

Ascent: 852m

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).

It is not going to be a long TR just as it was not a long day on the hills. Not too long, but very entertaining. Well, maybe some of you wouldn't find staggering up a path and crashing painfully into boulders ENTERTAINING, but in the end, we had a hearty laugh after returning from the windiest so far hillwalking day in 2018 and probably, the windiest one in our mountain career!

Bynack More is one of our top 10 Munros and definitely the favourite one in the Cairngorms, mostly because of the Barns of Bynack. Let's say, climbing Bynack without visiting the Barns is like going to Paris and not seeing the Eiffel Tower. Sadly, this time we had to give the oddly shaped rocks a miss, as it was nearly impossible to stand up on the summit, due to 60-70mph gusts of wind :shock: :shock:

The usual route up/down BM from Glenmore Lodge:

Track_BYNACK MORE 29-09-18.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts


We started early in the morning as forecast was said to be better earlier in the day. Overall, it was quite warm and dry, the strong wind was the only serious obstacle, but we will come to that.
Initially, walking in the forest was very pleasant and we could not feel the gusts at all (though we expected to be blown away later).
2018-09-29 bynack more 004.JPG

The Green Lochan with very little water in it, but no wonder, after such a dry summer...
2018-09-29 bynack more 006.JPG

It's a good track from the crossroads, where we left the Ryvoan Pass, gently uphill and dry. Still relatively quiet...
2018-09-29 bynack more 010.JPG

Crossing the Allt a'Garbh-choire and looking into Strath Nethy brought back the memories of the day when we decided to use that glen as an alternative descent from Bynack More via Bynack Beg. If it's a wet time of year, DON'T DO IT. You're in for a splodgathon!
2018-09-29 bynack more 023.JPG

Looking back towards Meall a Bhuachaille:
2018-09-29 bynack more 016.JPG

Still sunny when looking north, but as we began to climb up to the high plateau, the wind got stronger. Kevin wondered if we would be able to reach the summit at all...
Nice views...
2018-09-29 bynack more 018.JPG

The higher we got, the colder the wind was. At some point we stopped to dig up winter hats and gloves:
2018-09-29 bynack more 029.JPG

On the plateau (800m high) the gusts of wind were in full strength, blowing from the west and pushing us off the path. We ended up staggering from side to side, stopping to keep the balance and waiting through the strongest blows. I won't lie if I say, 50mph at least.
We somehow reached the final, steeper ascent, about 150m to the summit along a nice, rock-studded ridge. There are different strange shaped boulders here and on a good day, it's worth exploring this ridge with a camera - you'll find all kinds of shapes here, including a turtle and an angry troll. But today, any explorations were out of question, as we wondered if it was safe to even attempt this ridge!
Lovely, autumnal colours:
2018-09-29 bynack more 033.JPG

A lonely figure staggered down the path towards us. A walker descending Bynack after reaching the summit! We exchanged a few pleasantries (though it was hard to hear anything in the whistling wind) and she said that the path was mostly in the lee of the rocks so it was OK to walk until the very summit which was very blowy. We decided to give it a go!
It was a struggle from the very beginning:
2018-09-29 bynack more 035.JPG

...and I began to regret losing weight recently, as the wind did whatever it wanted with me :lol:
2018-09-29 bynack more 043.JPG

...but we appreciated the views, especially south to Ben Avon:
2018-09-29 bynack more 040.JPG

Thankfully, the path followed the sheltered, eastern side of the ridge, so we managed to stay upright, though we were making very slow progress. not to mention, that the wind was constantly turning the edge of my hat inside-out, as a result every time it happened, I couldn't see anything :lol: :lol:
Good path but conditions rather extreme:
2018-09-29 bynack more 045.JPG

Near the top, we emerged on the flat summit area and here we had to brace for the full strength of the wind. Gusting 60 or maybe even 70mph :? :?
We almost crawled to the summit, praying that we stay up and alive. I felt like in a tumble dryer set for the highest speed!
2018-09-29 bynack more 050.JPG

Looking towards the Cairngorm and Ben MacDhui:
2018-09-29 bynack more 048.JPG

The Little Barns of Bynack from the summit:
2018-09-29 bynack more 051.JPG

We hid behind a rock near the summit to regroup. No way we could stay on the summit for a cuppa and sandwich in such conditions. We decided to descend a bit and find shelter on the eastern side of the ridge, somewhere along the path (plenty of rocks to sit on). Another walker staggered to the summit cairn a few minutes later and he kindly offered to take a photo of the two of us. It might look like we are just posing by the cairn, but we were fighting to stay straight :lol:
2018-09-29 bynack more 054.JPG

No attempt was made to reach the Barns of Bynack, as it was rendered impossible. We started to walk back and suddenly, just below the summit, a particularly strong gust pushed me against a large boulder. I collided with the rock side-wise, painfully bumping my right elbow (why does it always have to hit in the most painful spot????), lost my balance and went flying. Thankfully, I fell backwards on my rucksack so I landed softly, and there was nothing in my sack that might be squashed (like a loose banana). I almost lost my hat but managed to grab it the last moment the wind was ripping it of my head. Kevin got to me on all fours and asked if I was all right. I guessed what he was saying rather than heard (my partial hearing loss in one ear doesn't help in such situations), and showed him in a crude sign-language, that all was OK, I just needed help to get back on my feet. We somehow returned to a vertical position, using the large boulder as support, and quickly run down the path to look for a sheltered spot.
We found a reasonable hiding place and sat down for refreshment. I inspected my elbow. It was sore and bleeding, but the scratch was shallow, nothing to worry about. I got away with it this time :D
As we finished our sandwiches, more walkers walked past us (or should I say struggled) towards the summit. Altogether, I counted 13 fellow souls, all desperate to reach the top of Bynack More. So we were not the only windblown ramblers that day :lol: :lol:
After lunch, it was time to find our way down. No heroics this time, just a quick retreat down the path. The wind was actually getting worse and in places, we really had to fight to keep going!
2018-09-29 bynack more 058.JPG

I almost lost my hat again!
2018-09-29 bynack more 056.JPG

It was a relief to reach River Nethy again, as the wind was not as bad here:
2018-09-29 bynack more 061.JPG

The path to Lochan Uaine was busy with Sunday walkers, hundreds of people, some of them looked suspiciously at two windblown figures marching back to Glenmore Lodge, giggling all the time :lol: I don't know what we found so funny, maybe it was me "doing a turtle" on the summit (regulars at WH meets will know what I'm referring to :wink: ) or maybe it was the fact, that we just beat our personal record in the windiest day spent climbing a Munro. Maybe it was a bit silly, I don't know, but we had fun anyway!
Last edited by BlackPanther on Sun Nov 03, 2019 5:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
BlackPanther
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 3464
Munros:260   Corbetts:165
Grahams:114   
Sub 2000:48   
Joined: Nov 2, 2010
Location: Beauly, Inverness-shire

Re: Blown away on Bynack More

Postby Alteknacker » Wed Oct 10, 2018 5:22 pm

60 -70 mph!!! :shock: Wow, I was blown all over the place in winds of 50 - 55mph (and ended up with a shoulder injury). I thought you actually get blown off your feet at 70mph!!!
User avatar
Alteknacker
Scrambler
 
Posts: 3002
Munros:173   Corbetts:31
Hewitts:237
Wainwrights:100   
Joined: May 25, 2013
Location: Effete South (of WIgan, anyway)

Re: Blown away on Bynack More

Postby onsen » Wed Oct 10, 2018 6:19 pm

Gusty but memorable ! :thumbup:
User avatar
onsen
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 272
Joined: Oct 10, 2012
Location: The Great Southern Land, Australia

Re: Blown away on Bynack More

Postby BlackPanther » Wed Oct 10, 2018 6:39 pm

Alteknacker wrote:60 -70 mph!!! :shock: Wow, I was blown all over the place in winds of 50 - 55mph (and ended up with a shoulder injury). I thought you actually get blown off your feet at 70mph!!!


I ended up colliding with a rock as well :lol: Hard to say exactly how strong the wind was, the 60-70 was just an estimate. It definitely feel like it! :lol:
User avatar
BlackPanther
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 3464
Munros:260   Corbetts:165
Grahams:114   
Sub 2000:48   
Joined: Nov 2, 2010
Location: Beauly, Inverness-shire

Re: Blown away on Bynack More

Postby Mal Grey » Wed Oct 10, 2018 8:12 pm

Are you 100% sure you weren't just tipsy? There's no wind in the pictures ;) :lol:

There's something highly entertaining in the challenge of days like this, a battle against the elements where you fight for every step, a sense of the ridiculousness of us puny creatures fighting the might mother nature, definitely helps! The only solution seems to be laughter and giggling.
User avatar
Mal Grey
Wanderer
 
Posts: 3399
Munros:110   Corbetts:20
Grahams:9   
Sub 2000:3   Hewitts:113
Wainwrights:71   Islands:5
Joined: Dec 1, 2011
Location: Surrey, probably in a canoe! www.wildernessisastateofmind.co.uk

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 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: dav2930, Deerplay, helenw, maninblack, Swirly30 and 39 guests