Ardgour – West Of Fort William this is an area of great hills and sea lochs though there are no Munro’s this is a place of great hills. Hamish Brown describes it as “the feel of an Island. Its surrounded by water and access is by Ferry.”
I was going to have a low key weekend but decided to join the Moray Mountaineering Club for their weekend meet at Strontian in Ardgour. This place Ardgour is wonderful defended by a long drive from the or the Connan ferry near Onich. I was in no rush so had a leisurely drive down visiting Sue in Onich. On the way the Corngorms were plastered with snow looking incredible. The further West I went the snow was not looking so much. I took Sue to lunch in the Glencoe tea room and superb lentil soup and a toasted sandwich.
The weather was great yet there were a few climbers in the cafe.
It was then head off on the Ferry £8.50 only short a few minutes to Ardgour. The ferry was busy then on to the bunkhouse at Strontian 12 miles away.
I met Simon and his wife who organises the meets on the ferry and we were soon in the Arirundle bunkhouse and sorted. It would be a big group of us of 18 several were here already and on Ben Rispole a nearby Corbett.
I decided to have a bike ride up the Arirundle Nature Reserve it was right on our doorstep to the Feith Domhnuill Mines.
It was good to get out on the bike and this would be a recce for tomorrow as I wanted to climb Sgurr Domhnuill a big Corbett at 888 metres.
The Forest is superb with old oak trees and though the track it is a bit washed out in places by the rain it was hard but good fun. I reckoned I would knock one and a half hours of my day by taking the bike.
The Forest is amazing with some incredible oak trees, mosses and lichen.There is little views of my hill till you get out into the open where the trees have been cleared but the Sgurr is prominent.
I took the lower path to where the Forest opens up and though pushing the bike a bit.
It would be worth the effort. It was and the descent was great but you have to be careful.
On the way back I met Simon out for a wander and we had a good chat. There was a woodpecker in the trees on the way off that was making some noise I would not have heard it but Simon was so aware.
It was warm and sunny yet in the open a bitter wind I decided to wear my shorts on the bike.
My mate Kev who lives nearby says this not a good idea as the rocks are out and his dog has some every day. A top tip.
There are also some good images of Lyme disease skin rashes on the LDA web site.http://www.lymediseaseaction.org.uk
Unfortunately blood tests don’t always show evidence of Lymes in the first 8 or so weeks and not all people have rashes such as this, if at all. Check out http://www.lymediseaseaction.org.uk/about-lyme/faq/ for more info.
I was soon back and the rest arrived the bunkhouse is cozy I had some tea then an early night and hopefully a new hill.
What’s so great about Ardgour.
Walking in Ardgour offers a wide array of different landscapes, stunning views, wildlife and points of interests.
For “Corbett” enthusiasts (Corbetts are the range of Scottish hills beneath Munros that must be between 2500 and 2999 feet high with a drop of 500 feet on all sides), Ardgour boasts three renowned examples which offer some breathtaking views looking across Loch Linnhe to the famous peaks of Glencoe, the mountains of the small isles and (of course) Ben Nevis.
For those who prefer a gentler pace there is a network of paths criss-crossing the estate which can be explored in all weathers and can be as long or as short as one would. It’s a special place.