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Sgor na h-Ulaidh on its own
by cheekykarma » Tue Aug 30, 2011 12:26 am
Route description: Sgor na h-Ulaidh and Meall Lighiche
Munros included on this walk: Sgor na h-Ulaidh
Corbetts included on this walk: Meall Lighiche
Date walked: 27/08/2011
Time taken: 8 hours
Distance: 16 km
Ascent: 1292m4 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).
Saturday the 27th August we arrived at the car park spot to find the lost munro of Sgor na h-Ulaidh.
We arrived about 10 am and were off on the search by 1030. I took my first photo direct from the car park toward the target but for sure it was indeed hidden.
Weather reports this time were positive, suggesting the morning of rain, mist, and dreich would be clearing by the afternoon. Not daring to be over hopeful we set off onto the land rover track to begin the journey.
I took a quick look back at the mood of Glencoe that morning.
The drive through Glencoe that morning was amazing. The pass looked as if it was on fire with smoky cloud hugging the land and the moody mountain tops peeking through.
I will say this too on the car park, it is right on a corner. The Glencoe pass is a fast road and we passed a car on its roof not far after Tyndrum. Reminding us that perhaps the biggest danger is less the mountains but more the road to them. So baring in mind the car park is on a bend and it is a 60 mph road, take care entering and leaving this little parking spot.
Our route as you would expect follows the standard path really when taking Meall Lighiche as well. We set off to follow the land rover track, then follow the burn, then cut up toward Stob an Fhuarain, then along the ridge and onto the summit of this lost and hidden munro.
It is also worth saying as things have changed since some guides. There is now some holiday cottages with private gardens and a path has been built and signposted for walkers to divert around the private gardens.
You rejoin and pass at the sheds which house a lot of sheep getting haircuts.
The landrover track runs out and you carry on and follow the water. There is a distinct little path runs up alongside as you pass by the corbett Meall Lighiche.
And still our target was not for showing itself.
But today was to be another great day for the walkers. The weather report was true to its word today, and yes, yes those peaks started to show against the sky.
As we followed the burn of Allt na Muidhe it soon became time to cut up onto the steep slopes of Stob an Fhurain.
These slopes are steep, grassy, mossy, and rocky. Finding a way up and across in a long zig zag is one way the other is to directly ascend the slope. We took a hard left turn and did just so adjust slightly as we came to the tops as you can quickly find yourself on steep ground amid the rocks and soon be using the hands and the feet to clamber a little.
Sheepies guard these slopes. And they do make me wonder. I clamber up with poles, gore-tex, layers, microfibres, wicking, breathable kit, supplies, parts of me clad in industry worth millions and more. Scientists right now creating that better walking boot than last years best boot. And so on. Yet there we have those little chaps with some fat, some wool, and a set of hooves.
Makes me fancy potatoes with a lamb chop!
After cursory glances and evil culinary thoughts with the sheep. The summit of Stob an Fhuarain is reached. Presenting us with the straightforward following of the ridge path toward our hidden munro.
But also showing off just how right the weather was today. And when the weather is great, it becomes astounding in Glencoe.
The way forward is marked with fence posts. And the path clearly rises up to take you onto Sgor na h-Ulaidh.
The path is reasonably straightforward, a steep zig zag trail. As you reach onto the summit itself it expands to large rock and boulder.
But today another great day in Scotland and of course great viewing.
Before my gratuitous summit pic of course it worth to note here who we shared the peak with. A group of 6 jolly chaps but also 3 very energetic folks. DECAID. Please have a look at the link http://www.decaid.co.uk/main-events/munro-mission
These folks are aiming for all 283 munro mountains in 49 days!!!
So simply sharing the summit with them in passing is enough for me to throw a few coffers toward their cause and I hope to encourage anyone else to consider a little donation to them as well.
Keep up with their exhausting progress on http://decaidmunromission.blogspot.com/
And like DECAID, I too had an enjoyable view to take in......
We decided to head off the summit toward Corr na Beinne and turn off and head down.
This is when we headed into a little bit of difficulty. For me and my novice 12 munro belt another good lesson.
Looking up you can see a clear pathway very often. Looking up the hill is scarred and you see a definite zig zag to follow.
But looking down.......
Is a way different story if you are descending amongst outcrop and crags.
This pic shows my walking buddy John looking for hand and footholds down toward a path we could maybe get to.
The pic is deceiving in that it does not really make clear that the pic is taken from an almost looking at my toes angle, and the line of ground below John is a straight tumble all the way to the glen below.
We tried and we were in some dangerous spots. You know when the moss covered rock just breaks, or the shale type rocky stone underneath slips, or the grass just slides off your boot.
Not a good place to be.
We decided it was best for us both to climb straight up again and go back the way we came.
In hindsight on the maps we could have went over Corr na Beinne and took the route down but as we had already spent a lot of time picking our way quite far down what I think was just between the Vixen and West Gully, and then having to ascend that up again. It was best to take the route we knew best.
And it gave a bonus in the end.
Some great views out to Mull.
We also on the day before our attempted descent saw something quite worrying.
The Royal Navy were out. On Exercise lets hope so. But we watched them go over Aonach Eagach then into a square type search pattern. Which made you think, someone is not being lifted off, they are looking for someone who has gone off!
So far the news has not relayed anything horrible and I am thinking it was a training day and some exercise.
But this in the back of the mind also was it was a sensible day to go back up and redo the path we were familiar most with. Rather than risk more time and energy on a more unknown route or chance.
And for me the novice, a very very good lesson in how quick things change from looking up to looking down. It is so so so hard to see a route down just by the very angle and nature of the contours of a hill.
The other bonus of this day. Great weather, great views, but a very special guest decided to take off his hat of clouds and say how do you do.
It was a pleasure to see Ben...
The way back down presented us with great views.
And on the road back to the car. The Aonach Eagach seemed to sum it all up. It stayed in shadow most of the day. It just looked on. It could sense there was a novice walker meandering around Glencoe nabbing his 12th munro. And it knows the fever, that crazy passion, will one day, sooner or later, lead them to its slopes and ridges. It sat in shadow almost smiling knowing one day it will catch me....
But for me, and for now, just looking at it is enough to say hmmmmm maybe maaaaybe next year. But not yet, not yet.......
Another great day and please if you read my report check out DECAID. Noble cause and a lot of effort put in.
Finally a little video around the summit of this lost munro.
by Johnny Corbett » Tue Aug 30, 2011 8:41 am
by jonny616 » Tue Aug 30, 2011 10:13 am
Not done this hill yet. looking at the map i may try from Etive & link it with Fhionnlaidh, but if not i will be re-reading your detailed report again.
by cheekykarma » Tue Aug 30, 2011 9:24 pm
the other mention on this hill is the long large slabs of rock that sit on the munro slopes as well, and near the top on the approach to the ridge of Stob an Fhuarain.
not a huge problem to navigate and skirt around - but some are long and these slabs are just like chutes waiting for a walker to think yeah I will not slip on that it will be fine
by skuk007 » Wed Aug 31, 2011 9:36 am
cheekykarma wrote:...the other mention on this hill is the long large slabs of rock that sit on the munro slopes ... some are long and these slabs are just like chutes waiting for a walker to think yeah I will not slip on that it will be fine
I see you've read my report.
by Tinto63 » Thu Sep 01, 2011 3:57 pm
Another interesting report.
by soulminer » Thu Sep 01, 2011 4:17 pm
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by cheekykarma » Thu Sep 01, 2011 9:58 pm
yeah was a good report and a bit ouch!
And it was your report in my mind when we were deciding lets go back up and back the way we came.
Had a slip and slide on the steep grass too near the end and the sudden acceleration is just frightening.
by MarilynMunro » Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:40 am