Back on Track with Antonia's First Double

Route: Beinn Narnain and Beinn Ime

Munros: Beinn Ime, Beinn Narnain

Date walked: 27/03/2012

Time taken: 10 hours

Distance: 14km

Ascent: 1384m

I had my first Sunday off work since October and with that fantastic weather forecast we weren't about to pass up such a glorious opportunity.
I'd suggested to Antonia that we get out for some walking and originally she suggested doing some walking around our home in the Borders but I pointed out that we need to be taking any and every opportunity that comes our way if we are to complete all of the Munros.
Now I know it isn't a race to get round them but I'm equally conscious that I don't want to be trying to tackle the Inn Pin at 70 years old ( although I'm sure it's probably been done more than once ) and our original plan included having all of the Arrochar hills completed last summer.
The plan was hatched to tackle Beinn Narnain, Beinn Ime and with an option on The Cobbler if time and fatigue allowed.
The plan was good, except that I hadn't banked on doing a 14 hour day on Saturday tramping up and down serving for 200 guests in the Hotel. Oh and of course I'd forgotten about the clocks changing so I only got 4 hours sleep too. All perfect preparations for a long day in the hills. :shock:
The rest of this TR is in the form of an interview with Antonia.
1 Fox Statue.jpg
That famous statue of a handsome fox pointing our way into the hills.

So Antonia, what did you think about the idea of tackling two Munros in one day?
Antonia: I was really excited about it because we've only climbed one on all of our other walks. I didn't think that we could do The Cobbler as well though because we would be too tired by then.

Did you have to get up early in the morning?
Yes. Paul came and woke me up at 6am but because the clocks had changed it was really like 5am so I was still quite tired.

Did you see anything interesting on the journey?
Not much. It was really misty most of the time. The car journey took longer than I expected too because Paul went the wrong way a couple of times. We did see that silver thing on the motorway and Paul shouted out "Time for Teletubbies" again. He always does that when we see it. :?

What was the weather like?
It was misty most of the time while we were driving but just before we got to the start we came out of the mist and it was really sunny. It was sunny all day then and it was really warm at the start but as we got higher up there was a bit of breeze to cool us down. I needed to wear my coat at the top of the mountains because it was still quite cold. There was some snow still around at the top of the mountains.
6 Morning Mists over Arrochar.jpg
View back to Arrochar from the track. The mists can still be seen in the valley running to Tarbet and Loch Lomond

Were there many other people about?
There were some people getting ready while we were parking the car but we hardly saw anyone on the climb up Beinn Narnain. We did get passed by a couple of people nearer the top and I decided to race some others to the top. There were a lot of people at the top and most of them had climbed up from The Cobbler side. One man took our picture at the top. Thank you to him. Some people were also doing Beinn Ime but lots were doing The Cobbler. We could see loads of people on the top of The Cobbler.

How long did it take?
It took nearly 4 hours to climb Beinn Narnain but less than two hours to get from there to Beinn Ime. It took us nine and a half hours in total. I thought we were quite quick really, I'd expected it to take us longer than it did.
Paul:I was really pleased with Antonia's progress. Ever since she put her foot in a bog on Ben Vane she's been really cautious about her footfall and consequently quite slow. But on this walk she seemed to have regained her confidence and mostly just ploughed on even when her foot did sink a bit.

What were the views like?
They were really cool, especially the views of The Cobbler. We could see other mountains and some that we have already climbed. Ben Lomond and Ben Vane. We got some good views of A'Chrois too but because of the mist we couldn't see as far as we did on Ben Chonzie.
28 A' Chrois and Sugach Buttress.jpg
A'Chrois and the Sugach Buttress

50 Beinn Ime Buttresses with A'Chrois behind.jpg
Buttresses on Beinn Ime with A'Chrois behind

25 Looking back to Ben Lomond From just below the Spearhead.jpg
Ben Lomond in the haze. Viewed from the top of Cruach nam Miseag

What did you think of The Cobbler when you first saw it?
I thought it was cool but quite strange. I thought that part of it looked like an elephant. I showed my mum in a picture and she could see the elephant but Paul still can't see it.
Paul:That first view of The Cobbler was a real stunner. Antonia was just beginning to flag a bit and was complaining about wanting a rest and then she crested the rise in front of her and let out such a gasp. It really spurred her on even though we weren't climbing that hill at the time.
15 First View of The cobbler.jpg
That first view of The Cobbler. No picture can really convey the absolute majesty of the sight.

What did you do that was fun?
I decided to race other walkers to the top of the mountains and I also pretended I was a soldier marching on parade.
I got to play in the snow that we found too and I used some of it to help cool me down a bit.
Paul:The other walkers didn't actually realise that they were in a race until Antonia did her victory celebration at the summit. So now you know folks, if you bump into us in the hills Antonia considers it to be a competition. :roll:
31 The Spearhead 2.jpg
The magnificent Spearhead. Two walkers can just be seen right centre. They are trailing in Antonia's wake as she races them to the top.

Did you like scrambling on Beinn Narnain?
Yeah, I really liked that. I'm not sure why but it's just loads of fun. It's wet and muddy at times and there are some big steps that Paul has to help me with.
11 Antonia on scramble up gully to Cruach nam Miseag 2.jpg
Antonia scrambling up a gully on the approach to Cruach nam Miseag

Which of the mountains did you like best?
Beinn Narnain because it was more scrambly and had the best views.
40 View across to Beinn Ime from Beinn Narnain.jpg
View across to Beinn Ime from Beinn Narnain

32 View down Loch Long From Beinn Narnain.jpg
The hazy View down Loch Long from the summit of Beinn Narnain

48 Beinn Luibhean and Beinn an Lochain from Beinn Ime.jpg
View of Beinn Luibhean and Beinn an Lochain from Beinn Ime

44 Beinn Narnain from the slopes of Beinn Ime.jpg
Beinn Narnain from the approach to Beinn Ime

What wildlife did you see?
We saw some Bullfinches near the start. I've never seen them before, they're dead pretty. There were some pretty yellow flowers on Beinn Narnain that Paul said were Primroses. There were loads of spiders in the grass on both mountains and we also saw loads of frogspawn and tadpoles in the pools.
7 Primroses.jpg
The Primroses were out on Beinn Narnain, smiling at the morning sunshine.

Were you tired when you got to the end?
Yeah I was really tired, my legs were aching and I just wanted to sit down. Paul took me to get McDonalds and then I fell asleep most of the way home.
55 Evening sun Streaming from behind The Cobbler.jpg
As we descended past The Cobbler the evening sunshine was streaming from behind it.

Now how do you feel about climbin two Munros in a day?
It's tiring but I really liked getting to the top of more than one mountain on the same day.
35 Paul and Antonia at summit of Beinn Narnain.jpg
Us at the summit of Beinn Narnain

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Comments: 10

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Attachment(s) Munros: Ben Chonzie
Date walked: 21/02/2012
Distance: 12.5km
Ascent: 712m
Comments: 15
Views: 6919

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Attachment(s) Munros: Ben Vane
Date walked: 02/08/2011
Distance: 12km
Ascent: 930m
Comments: 2
Views: 2855

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Attachment(s) Grahams: Dun Rig
Donalds: Birkscairn Hill, Dun Rig, Glenrath Heights
Date walked: 26/07/2011
Distance: 22km
Ascent: 792m
Comments: 2
Views: 3375

Approximately Our First Munro

Attachment(s) Munros: Ben Lomond
Date walked: 14/07/2011
Distance: 11km
Ascent: 990m
Comments: 7
Views: 4636


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Activity: Mountain Walker
Place: Borders Hills

Munros: 5
Grahams: 1
Donalds: 3
Sub 2000: 2

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Trips: 2
Distance: 26.5 km
Ascent: 2096m
Munros: 3


Trips: 3
Distance: 45 km
Ascent: 2712m
Munros: 2
Grahams: 1
Donalds: 3

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