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WH Meet - Fannichs the middle ones
by Fife Flyer » Wed Oct 30, 2019 9:52 pm
Route description: Sgurr nan Clach Geala, near Braemore
Munros included on this walk: Meall a'Chrasgaidh, Sgurr nan Clach Geala, Sgurr nan Each
Date walked: 25/10/2019
Time taken: 7.1 hours
Distance: 18 km
Ascent: 1120m5 people think this report is great. Register or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
We had fantastic plans (8 Munro's) for the weekend but I think you can guess what scuppered them - spot on, the weather. The forecast for Saturday & Sunday was awful, unless you like lots of wind and rain, with snow higher up so those plans were amended.
Now back to Friday, all the arrangements were finalised on Messenger and there would be four of us (the usual 3 and Martin) tackling what I call the Central Fannichs, which is basically the ridge in the middle. We arranged to meet at Broxden for a nice early breakfast at 6am and then the saunter up the A9 which at that time of the morning is not littered with campervans or caravans. Martin would be needing a top up of dirty diesel so we arranged to have a pit stop at Inverness.
We arrived at the start point just before 10am and it was rather blowy as forecast, but at least it was dry. Martin decided in his wisdom not to put waterproof trousers on, whereas we three were fully kitted up, I even had gaiters over my trousers. The forecast was for the temperature to feel like -10deg higher up so layering up was key to staying warm.
You can always tell when the forecast is bad when there are no other cars parked at the start, only dafties like us would be out.
Early morning shot of the western Fannichs
A sign of what lies ahead - underfoot condition wise
Looking back to Loch a'Bhraoin, don't the ATV's churn up the ground
Picking our way through the bog
The bridge is still standing
A few holes in the bridge, so care is needed
For those who don't know this walk takes in 3 Munro's which are all linked via a ridge, last time I did this walk I tackled it clockwise. George and I had a chat about trying it anti clockwise as were heading south the wind was right in our faces, so we came to an executive decision to head up the glen keeping the ridge on our left hand side. Our reasoning was if it was windy lower down it would be even worse higher up, so anti clockwise it was.
Happy smiley faces?
Martin finally decided it was time to don his waterproof trousers, what you can't see is the 40mph wind and rain
Martin still toiling behind his rock
A video to try and show what the weather was like
Heading slightly uphill now
Parminder waiting for his breakfast to kick in and give him energy
Looking across to the western hills
This is our lunch spot before we really started going up, nice and sheltered
A face of concentration
Not alot of water in the water feature, apologies for the splodge in the bottom left
Now it is time to head up there, I was trying to follow the WH route, at this point Martin and George opted for the direct ascent route
Splitting up wasn't a problem as we could see each other
Parminder & George having a moments break
Demonstrates how cold it is and we had now reached the snow line
Parminder opted to follow me, George would join up with Martin
Martin is the wee dot in the middle
One problem we observed from lower down was a slabby looking line of crags slightly to the right of the ideal ascent route, Martin & George went to the right of them Parminder following me to the left.
It looks like a spot of wet stuff heading our way
Parminder following me up, we kept keeping an eye on Martin & George
Another video taken between our first and second hills
We had now reached the bealach and this is looking up to our first summit
Our second target and the highest point on our route
On reaching the summit Martin confessed he wasn't feeling too great, a distinct lack of sleep wouldn't help either
Video on the summit of Sgurr nan Each
We didn't hang around on the summit for very long, the usual photo's and we were off on our way again.
Looking back to Sgurr nan Each
Video taken on the ascent of Sgurr nan Clach Geala
Looking down and back to the impressive ridge to Sgurr nan Each
Another shot of the ridge
Not far to our second summit
Parminder and George with Loch Fannich in the background
Looking across to the ridge off Sgurr nan Clach Geala, didn't want to go too close to the edge for obvious reasons
Martin and George taking a breather
The unique 'half trig' on the summit of Sgurr nan Clach Geala, Parminder doing a Franz Klammer impression
Looking down on our third and final target
Unfortunately I didn't take any photo's on the descent ridge as I was concentrating, the path was icy so I was carefully picking a route down in soft snow.
A 5 minute break and shelter from the wind behind a rather well positioned huge rock
Not too far now
Looking back to the ridge off Sgurr nan Clach Geala
Final video on the summit of Meall a'Chrasgaidh
Parminder approaching the summit
An Teallach in the distance
The shelter on the summit, needless to say we opted not to take a seat
That was the last of the photo's, the descent takes you down the shoulder and eventually into the bog.
This turned out to be another enjoyable day out and the weather didn't ruin the day, we only endured a couple of showers. As always a huge thanks to my colleagues for the company and banter and especially to Martin for persevering through illness.
by PeteR » Thu Oct 31, 2019 9:06 am
Despite the wind, which I can imagine, looks a good day with nice views......I saw nothing when I was there.
by BlackPanther » Thu Oct 31, 2019 9:18 am
I remember doing this trio clockwise but it was a long time ago. I'm tempted to repeat them in full winter conditions. That is if we have proper winter this year.
by Grisu » Thu Oct 31, 2019 7:23 pm
However, sounds like a great day, enjoyed reading, thanks!
All the best for Martin!
by Alteknacker » Fri Nov 01, 2019 12:08 am
by parminder » Mon Nov 04, 2019 7:51 am
by malky_c » Tue Nov 05, 2019 11:08 pm
Good effort getting up high at the weekend. I've been spoiled by far too much good weather in recent weeks so really couldn't be bothered. Turns out that it looked pretty good up there, even if it was hard, uncomfortable work .
by M4RTIN » Wed Nov 06, 2019 4:16 pm
A nice trio of hills, even if there was the odd repeat of 2 or 3, between all of us.
I definitely was not a my best, and would have been better off staying in the car.
I really was thinking I could have been hailing the whirligig-taxi before we even reached the 1st summit, but patience and support from you guys, plus a bit of stubbornness myself, got me up and over all three without the need to make "that call".
Apart from wanting to give up most of the way, it was another great day on the hills, and plenty of good views, considering the wild conditions.