Known as ‘The Kinloss sixty’.
The following list was collated in celebration of the sixtieth anniversary of the Royal Air Force Kinloss Mountain Rescue Team and is a selection of quality mountaineering and climbing days that can be experienced in Scottish mountains and are considered to be testing and exhilarating single day achievements.
Team members both past and present agreed this selection of quality ‘outings’ through consensus. Team members have historically completed all the ventures in the past and although not necessarily of the highest technical standards they do represent many of the finest achievements that are attainable in the space of a single day. None of the celebrated ‘Big Walks’ such as trans country multiple mountain traverses are represented here, these achievements are comprehensively documented elsewhere in their own right
Hopefully this listing will provide an inspiration, incentive and objective for future generations of RAF Mountain Rescue personnel and indeed other mountaineers to participate in their completion maybe as form of ‘tick’ list of quality things to do in the Scottish mountains. Let the fun begin …….
- The Greater traverse of the Black Cuillins, Isle of Skye (including the standard ridge and also the Blaven-Clach Glas traverse with cross country walk between.
The direction of travel is optional but the main ridge is probably best and easiest done from Ghars Bheinn to Sgurr nan Gillean and should include the ridge direct as much as possible including the Thearlach Dubh gap, King’s Chimney, Innaccessible Pinnacle and Naismith’s Route on Am Bastier.
Seven to twelve hours should be allowed for the traverse of the main ridge with a further twelve hours reckoned for to complete the Greater traverse. The main ridge has short sections of climbing at very difficult standard (V. Diff rock grade). In all this is a very demanding undertaking although exhilarating and possibly offers the finest of mountaineering adventure available in Scotland and indeed the British Isles.
- The Dubh Ridge (doing the Dubhs as they say) of Sgur Dubh Mor on the Black Cuillins of Skye.
Traditionally the route is started in Glen Brittle then onto Sgurr na Banadich summit where a to descent to Loch Coruisk is made for a quick ‘dip’ in this magnificent sea-loch. Once suitably ‘watered’ an ascent is made back onto Sgurr Dubh Mor via the Dubh Ridge, an interesting but testing, ‘easier’ graded climb that leads to the summit where a return can be made to Glen Brittle. A competent and fit party should expect to spend a full day on this splendid venture !
- The Pinnacle Ridge Circuit
|3||Skye – Pinnacle Ridge – Naismiths Route (Am Basteir, Bruach na Frithe)
Great mountaineering day Naismiths follows an improbable line for VD, how bold were these guys?
|Isle of Skye||Pinnacle Ridge – Sgurr nan Gillean – Am Basteir – Bruach na Frithe|
|4||Foinaven /Arkle Traverse
Big hill day in a remote area.
|N/W Sutherland||Foinaven – Arkle.|
|5||Elphin Traverse a big day in the wee hills. Lots of height gained, wonderful views of the hills and the sea.||Pentland Firth||Traverse of Stac Pollaidh, Cul Mhor – Cul Beag
Beginner’s introduction to a big hill day.
|The Fannaichs||An Coileachan, Meall Gorm, Sgurr Mor, Beinn Liath Mor Fannaich, Meall a’Chrasgaidh, Sgurr nan Clach Geala, Sgurr nan Each, Sgurr Breac, A’Chailleach|
|7||The Shenavall Six/ Summer/winter
Superlative hills in great country, the pull back up on the way home clears the mind. Magnificent, a must for everyone!
Really brave people do 7 + 8 together
|Fisherfield Hills||Beinn a’ Chlaidheimh, Sgurr Ban, Mullach Coire Mhic Fhearchair, Ben Tarsuinn, A’Mhaighdean, Ruadh Stac Mor|
|8||An Teallach (winter)*** Grade 2 If taken direct
Best hill in Scotland, do not miss the complete traverse for the best views.
|Dundonnell||Sail Liath – Sgurr Fiona – Sgurr Creag an Eich – Bidean a Ghlas Thuill|
|9||Beinn Dearg Six.
The drop to Am Faochagach is one to remember
|Ullapool||Eididh nan Clach Geala, Meall nan Ceapraichean, Cona Mheall, Beinn Dearg, Seana Breagh. Am Faochagach|
|10||The Torridon Trilogy.
Ben Alligin – Liathach – Beinn Eighe you can add the Corbett
One of Scotland’s finest, two beleachs of pain to enjoy. The West Coast at its best.
Big Boys and girls only in winter
|Torridon||Tom na Gruagaich – Sgurr Mor, Mullach an Rathain – Spidean a’ Choire Leith -Connich Mhor – Ruadh – Stac Mor – Black Carlins – Kinlochewe.|
|11||“The Knoydart Three”
A very isolated area, worth doing just for the situation.
|Knoydart||Ladhar Bheinn, Luinne Bheinn, Meall Bhuidhe|
Another gem of the West coast, a long day and either a long walk in or out, time to contemplate.
|Garich – Sgurr Mor – Sgurr na Coireachan – Garb Choire Mhor – Sgurr na Ciche|
|13||South Cluanie Ridge
“A great starter day, training for big hill days”
Best way to do it is by the Forcan ridge.
|Glen Shiel||The Saddle, Sgurr Na Sgine, Creag nan Damh Sgurr an Lochain, Sgurr an Doire Leathain, Maol Chinn- Dearg, Aonach air Chrith, Sgurr an Doire Leathain, Sgurr an Lochain, Druim Shionnach Creag a Mhaim|
|14||Glen Affric Traverse- Toll Creaghach – Mullach na Dheiragain
A very big day, and a “Long walk back”
|Glen Affric||Toll Creagach – Tom a Choinich – Carn Eighe – Beinn Fionnlaidh – Mam Sodhail – An Sochach – Sgurr nan Ceathreamhnan – Mullach na Dheiragain – Affric|
|15||Ben Alder Horse Shoe
“Cycle in to Culra” and maybe spend the night to saviour the atmosphere.
|Loch Ericht||Carn Dearg – Geal Charn – Aonach Beag – Beinn Eibhinn – Ben Alder – Beinn Bheoil|
|16||Cairngorms – The Big Seven
“The drop into the Larig Gru is when the mind games start.
|The Cairngorms||Cairn gorm, Ben Macdui, Carn a’ Mhaim, The Devil’s Point, Carn Toul, Sgor an Lochain Uaine, Braeriach|
|17||Eagle Ridge Plus 5 munros, munro baggers only
“A busy day” involving a fair bit of fitness.
|Lochnagar||Severe *** 650ft
Lochnagar – Carn a choire Bhoidheach – Carn an t – Sagairt – Mor – Carn Bannoch – Broad Cairn
“Adverikie” Wall plus 3 Munros
Scotland finest Severe and three good hills, a bike would be helpful and a place to dump the gear.
|350 ft HS *** Creag Pitridh – Geal Charn – Beinn a Chlachair.|
|19||The Big Four
“A wonderland of views, lots of area knowledge for the big callout.”
|Ben Nevis||Aonach Mor, Aonach Beag, Carn Mor Dearg, Ben Nevis|
“An early test for Munro baggers”
|The Mamores||Sgurr Eilde Mor, Binnein Beag, Binnien Mor, Na Gruagaichean, An Gearanach, Stob Choire a’ Chairn, Am Bodach, Sgurr a’ Mhaim, Stob Ban, Mullach nan Coirean|
|21||Both Sides of Glencoe
Buachille – Aonach Eag
“A lot harder than you think, no stopping for a pint”
|Glencoe||Buachille Etive Mor – Buachille Etive Beag- Stob Coire Sgreamhach – Bidean nam Bian – Sgorr nam Fiannaidh – Meall Dearg,|
|22||Aonach Eagach Ridge winter/summer with Clachaig Gully 1500 ft Severe ***
“Some take all day in the gully, a great Scottish experience for severe climbers”
|Glencoe||Clachaig Gully -, – Sgorr nam Fiannaidh – Meall Dearg|
This is a really long and difficult day, some skilful route finding needed.
|Glen Etive Hills||Ben Starav – Beinn nan Aighenan – Bheinn Mhor – Stob Coire Albannaich – Meall nan – Eun – Stob a Bhruaich Leith – Stob Ghabhar – Stob Choire Odhair – Clach Leathad – Creise – Meal a Bhuirdh|
|24||Ben More Seven
Hard hills for Leuchars area, do not forget to stop at Elmas after the day
|Crainlarich||Ben More, Stob Binnein – Cruach Ardrain – Beinn Tulaichean – Beinn a’ Chroin – An Casteal – Beinn Chabhair|
|25||Ben Lawyers Seven (winter)
Normal Leuchars Day
|Killin||Meall nan Tarmachan – Meall Corranach – Meal a Choire Leith – Ben Lawyers -An Stuc – Meall Garbh – Meall Greigh|
“Fantastic day, Scotland in miniature, wonderful mountaineering a long walk back if completing the Traverse”
|Isle of Arran||Goatfell – Cir Mhor – Caistel Abhail – Ceum na Caillich – Beinn Tarsuinn – Beinn Nuis – Beinn Bharrain – Mullach Buidhe. Greater Traverse|
|27||The Old Man of Hoy
Book left on top by Scotty KMRT. Ian Clough on first ascent ex Kinloss. Do not bivy on top.
|Isle of Hoy (Orkney)||E1 5b 460ft ***|
|28||The Old Man of Stoer
Brilliant especially when tide is in, who swims the channel?
|Lochinver||VS *** 4c 180 ft|
|29||Visit Stron Ulladale (The Scoop)
“A sore neck day”
|Isle of Harris||“Look and Learn” 300 VS 4b|
|30||The Cioch Nose
“Patey’s finest, finish by the ridge.
|Applecross||V Diff *** 450 ft|
Northern Rock – Dragon/Gob
One of Scotland’s finest crags and area, bike again handy and a wee bottle for the bothy. VD men head for Beinn Lair.
|340 ft HVS *** 5a/ 420 VS 4c ***|
|32||Skye Rock – ***
Wonderful, day on great rock, no fingertips left at the days end!
|Isle of Skye||Coire Na Ciche – Cioch Direct 500 Severe *** Arrow Route 120 VD *** Integrity Severe 250|
|33|| The Great Prow Blaven Clach Glas Traverse.
The easiest route in Hard rock finished by a superb mountain day.
|Isle of Skye||The Great Prow VS 4c/, Clach Glas, Blaven|
|34||Cairngorm rock – The Needle
Great views on clean Cairngorm rock.
|(Cairngorms) Loch Avon||840 ft E1 ***|
Two fine routes, Clean Sweep one of Robin Smiths finest
|Coire Etchacan -Hell’s Lum Crag (Cairngorms)||HS 500ft *** HS 350 ft ***|
|36|| Mitre Ridge “Cumming Crofton Route ” Squareface best VD in Scotland
Long walk in/out, watch the loose rock on Mitre Ridge
|Beinn a’ Bhuird (Cairngorms)||550ft, H Severe *** 150ft VD ***|
|37||Savage Slit (summer)
Impressive lines, great rock
|Coire an Lochain (Cairngorms)||Severe *** 180ft
180 ft VS 4c
|38||The Brute/ King Bee
Kinloss route – Dougal Hastons crag a crag for the bold VS leaders.
|Creag Du Newtonmore||200 VS 5a ***/ 180 ft HVS 4c ***|
|39|| Ben Nevis “Five Ridges In a Day”
Take a camera; if you achieve this you are now nearly a mountaineer.
|Ben Nevis||N/E Buttress, Observatory, Tower Ridge, Castle Ridge. Ledge Route|
Magnificent rock climbing on the Big Bad Ben
|Carn Dearg Buttress – Minus Buttress (Ben Nevis)||540 HVS 5a ***
860 ft HVS ***5a
|41||The Moruisg Hills
Stop at Beardies bothy on the long walk out.
|Achnashelleach||Moruisg – Sgurr nan Ceanaichean – Sgurr Connich – Sgurr Connich – Sgurr a Chaorachan – Maoile Lunndaidh – Bidean a Choire Sheasgaich – Lurg Mor|
|42||Kinloss Corner/Agags Groove January Jigsaw
Scottish traditional rock, steeped in history
Buachaille Etive Mor
|330 VD ***/360 VD***330 VD ***|
An unforgettable experience, especially the top pitches one for the crag rat.
|Buachaille Etive Mor||Severe *** 1500ft|
|44||The Etive Trilogy
A big Idwal slabs, bold routes impressive rock. Watch the descent and the midges
|Glen Etive Slabs||Hammer 500 HVS ***/ Spartan Slab 400 ***/ Swastika 500 E1 5b ***|
|45||Cobbler Rock –
Bold middle range rock on a traditional crag.
|The Cobbler (Arrochar)||Recess Route, Punster’s Crack, Ardgarten Arete. Whether Wall V Diff *** 250ft, Severe *** 160ft, Severe *** 200ft|
|46|| Arran Rock –
Got to be done by everyone, Labyrinth different type of route
|Isle of Arran||Cir Mhor Labyrinth 250 Severe, *** Sou’wester Slabs 350 VD ***|
|47||Arran Rock – South Ridge Direct
Another classic that gets better with age.
|Isle of Arran||VS *** 395m 5a/b|
Winter climbs Cairngorms Coire An Lochan – The Vent -Western Route
Two differing routes in a busy Corrie.
Coire an Lochan
|350 ft Grade 3***/400 ft Grade 4/5***|
|48||Deep Cut Chimney.
Should go in most conditions wild move out of chimney!
|Hell’s Lum Crag (Cairngorms)||560 ft Grade 4 ***|
|50||Fluted Buttress/ Hidden Chimney/ Alladdins Buttress.
Winter Course tick lists
Coire an -Sneachda
|350 ft Grade 4**/ 300 ft Grade 3** /350 ft Grade 4/5 ***|
|51|| Greag Mheagaidh Ice – Smiths Route/ Staghorn Gully
Big long, serious routes with a long walk out. Good navigation a must>
|Greag Meagaidh||550 ft Grade 6 *** 1200 Grade 3 ***|
|52|| Ben Nevis Ice – Point Five Gully (winter)
Kinloss involved in first ascent Ian Clough and mates.
|Observatory Buttress (Ben Nevis)||Grade 5/5 **** 1000ft|
|52||Smiths Route/ The Curtain
How did they climb these routes cutting steps
|The Ben||400 ft Grade 5 *** 250 ft Grade 4/5 ***|
|53||Tower Ridge (winter)
Scotland finest winter route, read Murray’s account in Undiscovered Scotland.
|Ben Nevis|| Grade 3 ****Magic winter day.
Very tricky route, not to be underestimated.
|The Ben||1000ft Grade 4 ****|
Aonach Mor – The Twins winter
Left Twin/ Right Twin.
Watch the descent gully,
|300 ft Grade 3 *** 250 Grade 2 ***|
|57|| Beinn Udlaidh Ice –
Special place for introduction to steep ice.
|Beinn Udlaidh||Quartvein Scoop/ South Gully Of Black wall/ Peter Pan.300 ft Grade 4/4*** 250 ft 4/4**
Very Big hill days – Lochaber Traverse.
Mamores – Grey Corries and The Big Four 19 Munros in 24 hrs.
A test of stamina and mind should be done on the longest day.
Mamores Mullach nan Coirean – Sgurr Eilde Mor- Stob Ban – Stob Choire Claurigh, Stob Coire Eain, Sgurr Chonnich Mor, Aonach Beag, Aonach Mor, Carn Mor Dearg, Ben Nevis.
South Clunnie Ridge – North Clunnie 17 Munros in 24 hrs.
Mind-blowing drop to the Clunnie Inn, do not stop in keep going, you are half way there.
The Saddle – Sgurr Na Sgine – Creag nan Damh – Sgurr an Lochan – Maol Chinn – Dearg – Aonach a Chrith – Druim Shionnach – Creag a Mhain –
A Chralaig – Mullach Fraoch – coire – Ciste Dubh – Aonach Meadhoin – Sgurr a Bhealaich Dheirg – Salieag – Sgurr na Ciste Duibhe – Sgurr na Carnach – Sgurr Fhuaran.
|60||The Skye Ridge Winter
This two-day expedition involving a bivouac on the ridge. To this date (2005) no RAF MR Troop has completed Britain’s finest winter route. Any Takers for the Greater Traverse in winter?
The complete mountaineer will achieve this in his CV.
|Skye||Gars Bleinn – Sgurr Na Gillean Grade 4 *** to include the Thearlaich Dubh Gap – Kings Chimney – In Pin on Sgurr Dearg – Naismiths Route on Am Basteir.
The greater Traverse includes Blaven