MUNRO ADVENTURE – One man and his dog of to climb all the Munros in 100 days – Graeme has let me use his blog to show you all the fun and adventure him and Penny are having !
2015 DAY 16/17(16/17MAY)
BAD WEATHER STOPS PLAY
After coming off the hill on Friday I drove back up to Blackrock Cottage to park for the night, there were numerous ladies there milling about cars everywhere , not quite such a quite spot today, obviously a weekend meet at there hut. Had a few texts earlier in the day but could not get a signal to reply , kettle boiled and sitting with a well deserved brew I read Dans, (my personal bike mechanics) text , are you taking a break for the ceilidh ???, mmmm that got me thinking ,MWIS forecast not good for both weekend days , I had just combined 2 days into 1
Why not I’m never much more than 3 hrs from home at any time so drunk up my brew sorted the van out and away by 3.45. It was raining most of the time since if came off the hill and continued almost to Inverness , it was amazing how green everything was becoming the further north I went , texed Shona to say see you at 7 what’s for tea???. (Well you do need to get your priorities right).Restless night due to my legs not feeling 100% I wonder why ??, the day was spent washing , tiding out the van and resting , the evening we were off to Rafford to the ceilidh It was good to catch up with the MMC lot, most of the usual characters were there , Dan in his highland dress , Jake full of fun as usual also dressed in the national costume, then there was 7 year old Joe with his home baked banana muffins very inappropriately decorated , Drummond with his cheeky smile couldn’t resist the twin peaked iced designed cake. Mr McLean sipping away at his bottle of tanqueray lime flavoured gin, Shelia going round with the begging bowl , taxi driver and expert dancer Ella , 6 ft tall Rachael breaking in her shoes in readyness for the tranter round,and to the musicians Emma on harp Carroll and Fifi on violin Martin on the whistle Richard on bodhran and finally jake on guitar and vocals . And to Andy on guitar doing his solo piece . A great night was had . Today it was restocking the van some gardening chores and off back to Glen Coe ready to start again tomorrow.
4 cans cider
1 Indian meal
2015 DAY 18 ( 18th MAY )
Sgorr nam Fiannaidh – Munro 188
Meall Dearg – Munro -212
A DAY OF TWO HALVES
Returned to Glen Coe last night after a wet weekend , it basically rained all the way down the road and it looked like it had been all day down here, got glimpses of the hills on the way down and could see the snow line was well down. I parked up for the night about half a mile outside Glen Coe village at a forestry car park,a fine secluded spot . It rained all night and still was in the morning so no hurry yo rush out today , I decided a 10am start regardless so waterproofs on and away. I altered my route plans accordingly due to conditions and decided to do the two hills individually both with sea level starts, walked down the forest path and took the track for the ascent of the Pap of Glen Coe . It’s a very well used route and has quite a bit of erosion problems winding it’s way up to bealach at 590m .
I decided to take a wee detour and ascend the Pap unfortunately the last 10 metres had cloud , back down and up the NW ridge on Sgorr nam Fiannaidh hitting the fresh snow at 720 m , it was clear views and the rain had stopped now and reached the summit which had 6in fresh snow on it , took a few photos of the snow covered Aonach Eagach ridge,then retraced my steps for about 10 mins and took the direct path which connected with the outward route and back to the van for lunch.
For my afternoons hike I moved the van round the Kinlochleven road 5 miles and parked at Caolasnacon just before the bridge . It was dry now but just kept the wet weather gear on as there wax still a log of grey cloud hanging about , up the track beside the river for about half a mile and took the SE ridge of the Corbett Garbh Bheinn ( well it was kind of way to to the bealach ) which followed the the rocky ridge to the summit which had just a covering of snow and no more , back down the same ridge to 750 m then a diagonal descent to the bealach . Took a compass bearing but it wasn’t really needed as there was a old fence line of metal posts all the way to the summit of Meall Dearg .
The last 50 m before the top had a untouched cap of pristine new snow and from the summit could send all the way down the Glen and over to Bidean which looked massive poking it’s ridges through the clouds , I’m glad I got the big hills here done here last week . Followed my steps back down to the bealach then followed the Allt Gleann a’Chaolais stream and onto the track back to the van . Job done with extras .
6hrs 34mins Some rain hail sleet and snow
45 Munros to date.
Well done Graeme and Penny good use of of bad forecast this is from our walk South to North in 1976 after doing the then 10 Mamores the day before. We were walking unsupported with all our gear. My knee was knackered after the Mamores the weather was wild and we missed out on these two Munros and walked the West Highland Way in the pouring rain to Blackrock Cottage
The day before we had done the Mamores – from Fprt William no support – Height 12000 feet of ascent a big day A high level traverse par excellence the Mamores. – to Kinlocheleven
Day 16 May 16 – “ATC Hut Kinlochleven – Devils Staircase – Blackrock Cottage Glencoe. The weather got very wild with extremely high winds and the classic Aonach Eagach was in no way on the winds were in excess of 60 mph so one of the best days is Scotland was not to be that day. Instead we followed the Devils Staircase over to Glencoe soaked to the skin we spent the night in the Blackrock Cottage Glencoe. the Devil’s Staircase was initially given its name by the soldiers who were part of the road building programme of General Wade. The carrying of building materials up that stretch of the road was not popular! The name was perpetuated when some of the workers building the Blackwater Dam chose to travel to the nearest pub after their wages had been paid out. For the workers at Kinlochleven the journey to the Kingshouse Hotel proved to be more difficult than many realised. The journey back was even worse as unsteady legs meant that many were unable to manage the return trip and, on a cold winter’s night, the devil often ”claimed his own“.
There is a signpost at AltnaFeadh indicating the West Highland Way over to Kinlochleven. The path is very clear and soon rises above the plain of Rannoch Moor. The path zigzags as it climbs the steepest part at which point the views of the moor and of the mountains surrounding it are well worth taking in. The path continues down, crosses the burn using surrounding it are well worth taking in. The path continues down, crosses the burn using stepping-stones and then starts slowly upwards again. To the right the Blackwater reservoir comes into view. Built for the aluminium smelter (now closed) at Kinlochleven, the dam had a capability, when full, of running the smelter for eighty days.
The path continues downwards until it reaches the dam road at the pumping station where the pipes to the smelter start the high pressure build up for the turbines in the generating station. Still very steep, the path continues down to Kinlochleven across the river, through a small section of woods to the tailrace where the water rushes out of the generating station.
It was the right decision and gave my knee a bit of a break as it was a short day carrying big rucksacks and 5 days food. Normally this is a lovely walk but today it was wild and wet but we had some great weather so far so could not complain the hut is just at the foot of Meall a’ Bhuird, and Rannoch Moor at the entrance to Glen Coe. OS map 41, GR NN268530. It was great arriving on Blackrock Cottage The cottage is about 1.5 miles south-east of the Kingshouse Hotel, and about half a mile from the A82, on the access road to White Corries ski area. The hut is owned by the Ladies Scottish Mountaineering Club and is the classic photo of Glencoe and many cards and Calendar’s what a place to stay the night and try and dry off. I was happy to have an easy day Jim and Paul were disappointed but it was the correct decision in the weather. As we came down into Glencoe the weather changed but it was late in the day. My knee was hurting would I manage to continue the Etive Hills were next on the list and we could break the record for number of hills donel The forecast was poor!
A wet day 10 .5 miles and height 1750 feet. No Munros”