Beinn Dearg

Munros: Am Faochagach, Beinn Dearg (Ullapool), Beinn Liath Mhor Fannaich, Cona' Mheall, Eididh nan Clach Geala, Meall nan Ceapraichean, Seana Bhraigh

Date walked: 31/05/2013

Time taken: 17 hours

Distance: 54.3km

Ascent: 3600m

At the turn of the year I had 34 Munros left, so I thought 2013 would be a good year to complete my round. May 30th saw me with still 34 Munros to climb so I thought I’d better stop making excuses and get walking!!!! I still had 6 hills around the Ullapool area so I thought that would kick start my count down.

After a few false starts of trying to leave work on Friday afternoon I eventually manage to get away at 3.30pm. I would normally have stopped en route but I was keen to climb a hill in the evening so I drove non stop. 4 hrs or so later I parked my camper van at the dam at Loch Droma and was looking out at the Fannaichs which looked stunning. I still had Beinn Liath Mhor Fannaich to climb and with 3 hrs of light remaining I quickly got my boots on and I was away by 7.40pm. I followed the pipe line for a few km before heading up the slopes. Going was good and the top of the Fannaichs were all clear. Sgurr Mor in particular looked stunning.
Beinn Dearg, tomorrows destination, however was under cloud. 1hr and 30 mins later I was at the top and the sun was setting behind the cloud covered An Teallach. It was stunning, quite spiritual in fact.
I was tempted to stay up for longer but there was a biting cold wind and I was keen to get back to the camper van before dark. An hour and ten minutes later I was back in the van and enjoying my evening meal at 10.40. 8.3km and 738m ascent in 2hrs 40mins was a good start to my weekend.
The MWIS forecast had not been great, 30% chance of cloud free Munros, so my heart skipped a beat when I looked out the window at 5.45 the next day and there was cloud free skies in all direction.
I quickly had breakfast and drove the 5 miles down the road to Inverlael. The plan was to climb Beinn Dearg, Cona Mheall, Meall nan Ceapraichean before heading over to climb Seana Bhraigh, via Eididh nan Clach Geala, which I had already climbed some years earlier. It would be a big walk of 34km and 2126 ascent, but with an early start time was on my side.

I left the van at 6.40 and headed up the forestry rd. It had been 3 years or so since I last walked up the rd when climbing Eididh nan Clach Geala and memories of that day soon came back. Thunder and lightning that day, but nothing but blue skies today. At 8 o‘clock (1.40mins) I past the path towards Eididh nan Clach Geala and the bealach was definitely getting closer. Beinn Dearg looked fantastic and so did loch Broom behind me.

9 o’clock (2.20mins) saw me at the Bealach. After a quick bite to eat I was soon following the wall up to the summit which was reached at 9.40 (3hrs). The views were fantastic An Teallach looked impressive as did the Fannaichs and Seana Bhraigh looked a very long way. I could even see my favourite hill, Stac Pollaidh.

The next hill however was not too far away and it only took me 50 minutes to reach the top. An Faochagach, tomorrows destination, was In full view and I was able to familiarise myself slightly with the shape of the hill in case visibility was poor the next day. 45mins to the next top, Meall nan Ceapraichean, and I decided to have an early lunch. Opened my couscous but to my horror I had forgotten to pack a spoon. I raked about in my rucksack but the only thing I could find was my compass. Hadn’t needed to use my compass as yet, so I thought I might as well put if to good use!!! The couscous was as good as ever.


Seana Bhraigh still looked a long way off but it was still only 11.15. I had loads of time left and I was still feeling good. Eididh nan Clach Geala was my next destination and I was looking forward to climbing it again as visibility had been poor the last time round. The decent down was interesting and route finding could have been problematic in poor visibility as there was several craggy slabs. I soon reached the bealach and remembered the little lochans. 12.15pm saw me at the top of Eididh nan Clach Geala ,5hrs 35mins after leaving the van. I was overjoyed with my progress but Seana Bhraigh was still looking miles away.
I had a quick look at the map and to my dismay it was still a good 6km away, about 2hrs to the top I reckoned and then I would have a 3hr or so walk out. Better get going I thought to myself.

My 2 hr prediction to the top was not far off as I made it in 1hr 50 mins (14.05) The walk across the plateaux was interesting walking past several little lochans. Walking along the rim of Cadha Dearg was interesting too. Would not want to try and descend that way.


The final climb up Seana Bhraigh was however hard. I was definitely slowing and the weather had turned. It was now raining but the cloud base was still 3500m or so, so visibility was still good. When I reached the top I was knackered and it was freezing so I took a quick photograph, had a quick chat with 3 guys who had walked in from Glen Mulzie and headed down.

The weather got worse and soon I was walking in hail. Cloud base was still 3000m or so, so visibility was still good. I followed the lochan trail and I soon found the path down Coire an Lochain Sgeirich that would take me back to the van. It was a long walk back but the weather had improved again and by the time I got back to the forestry track I was walking in a T shirt. At 17.25 I put the kettle on and in a couple of minutes I was enjoying a well deserved cuppa. I had been on the go for 10hrs 45 min. I was tired but happy, one of the best walks ever.

I returned to where I had camped the night before and cooked a celebratory tea of sea food pasta (mussels, calamari and prawns). Food always tastes twice as good when you have been walking. An early night was in order as I had another 12.1km of walking tomorrow and 736m ascent.

I had a lazy morning enjoying a coffee whilst lying in bed looking out towards the Fannaichs which again were cloud free. Could I get 7 cloud free hills? It was time to find out what An Faochagach would bring.
I drove the 2 miles down the rd and was off at 8.20 I soon reached the Abhainn a’ Gharbhrain and was glad I had packed an old pair of trainers. I quickly changed footwear and was across with no bother at all. Boots were soon on again and I was enjoying the walking. My legs were surprisingly feeling good. The climb was fairly uneventful and I reached the summit in 2 hrs or so. It was cloud free but again there was a biting wind so I did not hang around. I was however quietly delighted that the land rover track that is marked on the map is fairly in descript. I was half expecting a motorway. When I reached the Abhainn a’ Gharbhrain on my return I was not too worried about walking with wet kit so I just ploughed through. Should however have taken the 3 minutes to change my gear as I had an uncomfortable I km back. I had a quick cup of coffee and was soon heading back to Carnoustie. 28 to go! The countdown had begun!!!!

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Comments: 3


Location: Carnoustie
Activity: Munro compleatist
Mountain: Slioch
Place: Torridon
Member: None
Ideal day out: Long days- with lots of miles

Munros: 272
Corbetts: 10
Grahams: 1

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Trips: 1
Distance: 54.3 km
Ascent: 3600m
Munros: 7

Joined: Jan 07, 2013
Last visited: Jan 07, 2019
Total posts: 9 | Search posts