Alladale Grahams

Grahams: Beinn Tharsuinn (Ardross), Beinn Tharsuinn (Deanich), Càrn a' Choin Deirg, Càrn Salachaidh, Meall a' Chaorainn (Easter Ross)

Date walked: 03/07/2022

Distance: 83km

Ascent: 3066m

After last week's visit to Easter Ross, I was tempted to do a repeat and gather up the various Grahams still required in that area. I'd started off with a plan to do Beinn Tharsuinn (Ardross one) along with Carn Salachaidh from Strath Rusdale, but then I got busy with the planner and decided it would be more efficient to link the four Grahams around Alladale and pick off the Ardross Tharsuinn on its own. I've done all the Alladale Corbetts three times, so wouldn't need to factor them into the plan. As usual we headed up after Allison finished work on Thursday evening. The roads were fairly quiet and we made good time despite driving fuel-efficiently. Arriving at the parking area at Glen Calvie I noticed one of my tyres was looking decidedly flat - that won't have helped fuel consumption...I inflated it and thought I'd see how it was when we returned. Bags loaded, we set off into the slightly midgy but otherwise rather lovely evening.

2022-06-30_2157 Raw.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts

My route took us through Glen Calvie Lodge - although we'd been this way once before I didn't feel comfortable as it felt a bit like trespassing. So we kept beyond the outer wall, past a lot of fishing beats. Allison saw a salmon jump entirely out of the water. We reached a wee bridge but noted that this wouldn't link with the track we wanted to take, so a bit of huffing and puffing up hill through bracken and climbing a deer fence was required. Would have been much easier to take the normal route for Carn Chuinnaig and join the track later on... Anyway, we walked towards the trees, startled by a sound somewhere between a squeak and a squeal - I though it was some kind of owl, but Allison said it was deer - and right enough, a group of little deer broke out of the undergrowth. I'm used to hearing deer bark, but haven't noticed them making this noise before. We continued a way into the trees, found a flat area in a clearing and decided to pitch for the night. Grand views across to the Ullapool hills - could just make out Suilven against the afterglow of the setting sun.

ImageAA8660F0-8D54-4CC1-9C84-7C6418228F7A_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Forecast for Friday - as indeed for all three days - was rain, due to start, apparently at 9am. Well, we got up and set off around 8, and the rain avoided us until almost 2pm. We could see showers falling in various locations around us, but we were pleasantly dry for the morning at least. We continued along the track which was going south, rather than east towards Carn Salachaidh but the direct route looked somewhat unpleasant. So we had good surface underfoot, the track joining with the east-bound track coming from Diebedale. After crossing a bridge, we took a left hand track for a wee while before cutting across the tussocks and peat hags towards Carn Salachaidh. Tough going. The summit was reached, good views towards a moody Carn Chuinneag before we headed back the way we'd come.

ImageCDE6F2CF-3494-4077-872D-24B9F742E437_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageCFC6C7A0-DE70-44EC-9962-DB08A171963B_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image455937AD-90CB-4F13-A051-8031E5E55B39_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image4AA145B8-8BB4-4C74-9923-86C36A7DBF87_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image330DBD37-C7F2-4115-AB42-8791589B5FA0_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageDFE51316-C4C0-4845-B097-14E438EF0A99_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

We passed the lodge at Diebidale and set off up the Diebidale Ridge, following an ATV track for a while. Once the plateau is reached, the walking is good, with short grass and moss underfoot. Saw our first cloudberry of the year. When we reached Leaba Bhruic Allison was all for stopping for the day. However it was still only about 3.30 and I wanted to get Beinn Tharsuinn done - I hoped we might be able to camp near its summit. So a long drop and a steeper pull up the craggy slopes of Tharsuinn. Sadly the rain was quite heavy by now and there was nowhere at all to camp - far too stony. We started descending towards From Loch, looking for suitable spots, but there were none - either the ground was far too slopy, tussock-hell, or if it was flat it was a marsh. We went along the loch side for a bit, hoping to find something, but there was nothing, and, being in the shelter from the wind, all manner of flying beasties were around. I suggested we could try heading uphill, directly north of the loch, hoping we'd get a breeze up there and maybe find a better pitch. This had nothing to do with me noticing there were three Simms up there, not at all :wink: Fortunately we did find a suitable spot, almost at the summit of the 648m subSimm. Got the tent pitched, had our meal, then I said that I was going to do the Simms. There wasn't a great deal of ascent required - 200m for all three from where we were and I was back at the tent in around an hour, dried off (as it had stopped raining by then) and much warmer than I'd been feeling sitting in my wet clothes eating my tea.

Good walking on the Diebidale rdge
Image844C177A-CFE5-4DF4-83A9-B8B7DF46D93D_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageA4C9D7E3-A966-46C7-ABF2-61BE58391AF0_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image40C648E2-68BE-447D-A9F1-88AFD1BB40A3_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Above Crom Loch
ImageBE268328-96E6-4C42-A7CE-442FFF2AE504_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image96FD4342-B187-4FC0-9D11-B000AC1FA719_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

The rain came on in waves overnight but we had another dry morning on the Saturday. Today's plan was to climb the fearsomely steep Meall a'Chaorainn then take the track up to Alladale Lodge and visit Carn a'Choin Deirg. We descended to the valley and followed the Allt Crom Loch westward, arriving at a couple of small dams that led us to the track. From here, the monster awaited :lol: When we climbed this before, we did so from the SW, where the gradient is easy, as we'd come from Carn Ban. But we both remembered the knee crunching steepness of descent off the east side. This would be our path of ascent. The good news was - we started from 370m and were only going up to 620m so the ascent wouldn't be too long. Steep, short heather, the odd deer track. The summit is right where you emerge after the climb, rather than having to lumber about on the hill top. Great. Now we can go back down :lol:

The monster
ImageF9A22F00-488D-482C-99FD-EE92ECE09798_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageBDCB134C-F474-4E17-ABF6-E61343B43E86_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageEC4915E5-0B91-49E7-A2C0-C67871275831_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image17F6178D-64FF-4937-95F3-E66C62C92F21_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

After the excitement, we set off along the track to Deanich Lodge and paused for lunch by the footbridge. Rain sent a multitude of ripples on the otherwise calm water. Then up Gleann Mor towards Alladale- always a pleasant walk, with various good spots to camp along the river, if you don't mind cows for company. We reached the crossroads before the Lodge, where we met three folk out for the day. They'd enjoyed the spectacle of salmon leaping too. Noticed that the estate have completed works on their greenhouses/raised beds which look excellent. Our route took us through the main lodge - again I didn't feel that we should be there although there were no 'private' signs, so we went around the outer wall onto a track which we followed for a short period before taking a vague ATV track up onto the hillside. This is clearly where the estate dumps the decapitated heads of deer, as we found numerous skulls - no other bony body parts, just skulls. I had an image of a worker on an ATV chucking out heads left right and centre as he went up the hillside. There are some new tree plantations which we wended through before reaching the fence line. When doing Carn a'Choin Deirg previously (the WH route), I'd noted how easy going the terrain was, nice short grass and moss. I kinda expected the same when going up by this route - oh no! tussocks cleaved by peat hags was the order of the day. Very frustrating and slowed our progress down. The rain, which had been showery all day, now came on with renewed vigour and the wind was right in our faces too. Not fun. It's a while since we've had a lot of rain over a weekend, and I'm quite keen to keep it that way.

Image0F04E49D-3B71-4D4A-BB73-6CDE9C5CF4DB_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image319A734C-F6EC-4D79-B59E-A705C28BE6C3_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image112BE1C6-1C01-4FC0-B190-15F070B16DCA_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

We inched our progress along the hillside, with the time getting on. Allison was tired and her back was hurting - all the rough ground wasn't helping. I knew we'd have to camp somewhere here for the night. Yesterday's problem of lack of spots came up again. I wondered if we might camp around Loch an Tuill Riabhaich but it didn't look promising. I decided to deviate from my planned route, descend into the valley and try to find a camp spot there, so that we could head up to the summit unladen. After ploughing through more peat hags we found an ok spot beside a gate in the fence and got pitched in the pouring rain, after I'd ranted and raged about the bloody weather. A bit of food helped us both and we set out in almost dry conditions to get to the summit. Although the clouds were still low, the evening was pleasant, with the odd rainbow over the hills. back to the tent for another rainy night.

ImageFC95BAA4-31EA-4DF4-BBA2-EAE528D23F02_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image41E75373-8212-44DE-A241-B2C80130C406_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageC2EAEF51-73FD-4DD5-9FA3-091147E84706_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageF42895D1-3D9B-4DD9-9224-40DE86D4DBC2_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Sunday's forecast had been another 'rain all day' one, so it was a bit of a surprise to wake and find it dry. We packed up and set off, deciding to follow the course of the Allt Riabhach rather than return the way we'd come in. This was actually quite nice, there was something of a deer path and not too many tussocks. The grass was studded with spotted orchids and other pretty flowers - we saw the season's first bog asphodel. A cuckoo serenaded us - have not heard many cuckoos this year - it'll be time for them to depart very soon now that we're into July. Our route brought us out at the holiday lodges and we walked back to the car. My tyre had deflated a bit, but not tremendously so and I could see a small nail in the rubber, the culprit. I decided to re-inflate it and hope it would be ok on the journey home. But before that there was the question of Beinn Tharsuinn (Ardross) to be considered.

Image410534FF-ADC6-4022-A5B5-6EF107C3C069_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image590B46D4-2209-4973-AEDD-126A607F3796_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image6D8689D9-83B1-467B-A217-5C79A2B157BB_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image8CCB1539-B587-42AA-A283-DC1E530097B6_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

New Greenhouses
ImageA89CF839-B9C1-4D9E-BC0A-AF51C8DC1B27_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image1F674456-0AF6-4987-B909-055BA06780F5 by Al, on Flickr

2022-07-03_1202 Raw.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts

I had hoped that we'd be back at the car by 9, giving us time to do the next hill and get home before it got too late - but it was around 11 now. Last time Tharsuinn had taken us 5.3 hours and had involved peat hags and unpleasantness. Given that we were both tired and a bit sore I didn't really fancy that - but at the same time, the hill was on our road home and was a long way to come up another time. Allison was ok to give it a try and therefore we drove down to the quarry at Strath Rory, had a quick lunch in the car and prepared to set off along the quarry track. The sun was actually shining! Rather than repeat the WH route, I thought we could do a more direct ascent. We got as far as the quarry on the slopes of Torr Leathan- a hideous gouging of the landscape - and took a line right up the back of Tharsuinn. A bit tussocky, wet in places but no peat hag to battle with. Glowering skies from the trig column - Carn Chuinneag once again, Wyvis too. back down the same way injust under four hours, which was welcome.

ImageEA48EDDE-BFF1-4FD1-934A-94507F7FF506_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageF9D7A228-D0BE-4EF5-B3CB-A65AED890825_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageDF728AE1-A940-4091-A493-54A835D36310_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image0E7D12D0-52A5-40C2-B005-8F51FA206AB2_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image6EA4087A-189D-4314-A9F1-CD88EEFC26FC by Al, on Flickr

Set off back to Inverclyde. Roads were surprisingly quiet, maybe being that bit later than usual helped. As we approached Inverness I remembered about the Black Isle Brewing Company's shop - A checked that it was open til 5 (we were at 4.30 and near), so we took a wee diversion in there, spoke to a delightful older lady behind the counter, and came out with a case of mostly strong dark beers. Something for a cold night in the tent :lol:

Click to mark this as a great report. Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

Windy Wyvis and some Grahams from Glen Glass

Attachment(s) Munros: Ben Wyvis
Grahams: Beinn nan Eun, Càrn Loch nan Amhaichean, Meall Mór (Easter Ross), Meall nan Eagan
Date walked: 26/06/2022
Distance: 60km
Ascent: 2760m
Views: 192


This post is not published on the Walkhighlands forum
Attachment(s) Date walked: 22/06/2022
Views: 19

Beinn Maol Chaluim from Glencoe

Attachment(s) Munros: Mullach nan Coirean, Stob Bàn (Mamores)
Corbetts: Beinn Maol Chaluim
Grahams: Stob na Cruaiche
Date walked: 19/06/2022
Distance: 59km
Ascent: 2964m
Comments: 4
Views: 360

Six Windy Corbetts

Attachment(s) Corbetts: Càrn na Drochaide, Creag an Dail Bheag, Creag nan Gabhar, Culardoch, Farragon Hill, Meall Tairneachan
Date walked: 13/06/2022
Distance: 78km
Ascent: 3710m
Views: 294

Sunshine in Ardnamurchan

Attachment(s) Corbetts: Beinn na h-Uamha, Creach Bheinn (Morvern), Fuar Bheinn
Grahams: Beinn Gaire, Beinn Mheadhoin (Morvern), Croit Bheinn, Glas-charn, Sgùrr a' Chaorainn
Date walked: 05/06/2022
Distance: 88km
Ascent: 5048m
Views: 296

1, 2

Weasels' Cape Wrath Trail Adventure -Part Two

Attachment(s) Date walked: 12/05/2022
Distance: 406km
Ascent: 15300m
Comments: 19
Views: 1902

A very long walk for a Graham (and a Sub)

Attachment(s) Grahams: Meall Dubh
Sub 2000s: Ben Dreavie
Date walked: 05/05/2022
Distance: 406km
Ascent: 15300m
Views: 357

Weasels' Cape Wrath Trail Adventure -Part One

Attachment(s) Date walked: 04/05/2022
Distance: 406km
Ascent: 15300m
Comments: 5
Views: 1372

An Odd Weekend in Armine

Attachment(s) Grahams: Ben Armine, Creag Mhór (Sutherland)
Date walked: 01/05/2022
Distance: 48km
Ascent: 1053m
Comments: 7
Views: 993


User avatar
Location: Greenock
Occupation: Idle and old
Interests: Searching for meaning
Activity: Hill Bagger
Mountain: Foinaven
Place: Assynt and beyond
Gear: Satmap Active 12
Member: MCofS
Camera: iPhone 13 / Sony RX100
Ideal day out: A long walk that thrills, chills and makes me feel alive
Munro rounds: 2
Corbett rounds: 2
Graham rounds: 1

Munros: 265
Corbetts: 137
Grahams: 163
Donalds: 86
Wainwrights: 15
Hewitts: 31
Sub 2000: 383
Islands: 28
Long Distance routes: West Highland Way    Cape Wrath Trail   

Filter reports



Trips: 30
Distance: 2604 km
Ascent: 111061m
Munros: 16
Corbetts: 35
Grahams: 62
Sub2000s: 2


Trips: 43
Distance: 2399 km
Ascent: 129611m
Munros: 135
Corbetts: 62
Grahams: 25
Sub2000s: 8


Trips: 60
Distance: 1982.7 km
Ascent: 85039m
Munros: 13
Corbetts: 2
Grahams: 8
Donalds: 2
Sub2000s: 190


Trips: 57
Distance: 2933 km
Ascent: 180392m
Munros: 11
Corbetts: 193
Grahams: 34
Donalds: 1
Sub2000s: 27


Trips: 61
Distance: 3090.77 km
Ascent: 206176m
Munros: 271
Corbetts: 16
Grahams: 10
Donalds: 9
Sub2000s: 32


Trips: 76
Distance: 2994.86 km
Ascent: 175243m
Munros: 67
Corbetts: 12
Grahams: 72
Donalds: 81
Sub2000s: 97
Hewitts: 13
Wainwrights 12


Trips: 78
Distance: 2035.42 km
Ascent: 124390m
Munros: 17
Corbetts: 4
Grahams: 142
Donalds: 71
Sub2000s: 24
Hewitts: 15


Trips: 68
Distance: 2453.94 km
Ascent: 164961m
Munros: 77
Corbetts: 126
Grahams: 17
Donalds: 8
Sub2000s: 2


Trips: 64
Distance: 2406.7 km
Ascent: 166291m
Munros: 109
Corbetts: 112
Grahams: 16
Donalds: 10


Trips: 64
Distance: 1894.46 km
Ascent: 127277m
Munros: 219
Corbetts: 17
Grahams: 4
Donalds: 3
Sub2000s: 1


Trips: 24
Distance: 254.33 km
Ascent: 16304m
Munros: 26
Corbetts: 5


Trips: 1
Corbetts: 1
Donalds: 1

Joined: Aug 22, 2012
Last visited: Jul 06, 2022
Total posts: 2105 | Search posts