Sunday, 16 October 2016

My final Munro in Glencoe

Our route takes the zigzags up the front of the central peak Gearr Aonach and descends down the nearest hill Beinn. Fhada.

On the other hand if you like a bit of excitement doing a top mountain route that will stick in your memory for the rest of your years read on.

We had travelled up to Glencoe to try and catch up the tail end of a glorious settled spell of weather, staying at the FRCC hut in Kinlochleven. The hut already had two occupants, one of the best things about staying in these places is the characters you meet. Today was no exception, we got talking to 'Derek' and his lady friend, he told us that his greatest claim to fame was that he had done ALL the 4000m peaks in the Alps. I mentioned that one of my mates had also done the 4000m peaks, a guy he also knew once we had mutual friends we got on like a house on fire.

Next morning we were away early, weather was dry, some blue sky with mist swirling around, our objective was to do the Snakes and Ladders zigzag on the Nose of Gearr Aonach then walk the ridge contour round to the Lost Valley path then climb Stob Coire Sgreamhach, my last Munro in Glencoe, then play it by ear.

After a couple of minor dead ends we found the grade one scramble snakes path we then took another excursion out onto the main face to the right and found a superb variation which led us up to the grade three ladder scramble which in turn led to the escape path under the East Face of Gearr Aonach.

All to soon we reached the main ridge leading up to Stob Coire nan Lochan which we avoided by contouring left. This took us into some close proximity to some big bellowing beasts, fortunately they were more interesting in rutting each other so ever so quietly we sneaked past.

Some interesting ground to us across to the main Lost valley path up a badly eroded path to the col and onto Stob Coire Sgreamhach.

The cloud cleared for the briefest moment we caught site of the Beinn Fhada ridge, most impressive, we were sold on the idea, this has got to be one of the best ridges in Glencoe. On the way up Gearr Aonach I had been scoping the nose of Beinn Fhada which looked very steep BUT to the east of the main nose it looked more forgiving. So we skirted the main face down very steep broken ground, exciting stuff.

A quick pint in the Clachaig before going back to see my new bestest mate 'Derek'. 

Gearr Aonach above the Lost Valley Path

The initial scramble up the Zigzags

Back on the grade one section

Todays munro is the top left peak

Lokking down the Beinn Fhada Ridge

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