Whiteburn's Wanderings

One man's wanderings backpacking around Scotland plus the odd digression

Around Corrour: 16 – 18 June 2013

My observation is that most Munro tickers seem mount day raids to ‘bag’ a hill; they look for the easiest route and then mount an expedition to get in and out before retiring back to civilisation; I far prefer to enjoy the hills at a more ‘leisurely’ pace combining backpacking with traversing the hills sometimes by more less trodden paths or no paths at all.  This was to one of those dawdles.

Day 1: 22.5km: 1400m ascent

Day 1

A delayed start from home, roadwork’s and idiots on the road meant that I didn’t get to Fersit until 10:30.  After the final packing I finally managed to get set off from parking area by An Dubh Lochan by 10:45.

I managed only to get a couple of kilometers when I realised I’d left the car key at the car so I dumped the sack and jogged back to the car returning ½ hr later, another delay!

I couldn’t see any sign of a path so I just set off cross country following the Allt Chaorach Beag before cutting up to the ridge north of Stob Coire Sgriodain, entering the rain and clag.

Once on the ridge a good trail led over the top and on to Cho Dearg before doubling back to Meall Garbh and following the ridge down over Garbh – bheinn , I didn’t see anything more than 20m in front of my nose until I finally was half way down the descent to the Allt Luib Ruairidh.

The 300m ascent up to the SW ridge of Beinn Lap proved unrelentingly steep and very sweaty inside waterproofs.  The NE ridge had a gentle breeze so despite the rain and clag I really wanted to camp here to avoid the midges but I couldn’t find any water so I was forced to descend.  Finally ended up by the river about 1km south of Strathossian House, quite a good spot which even had a light but intermittent breeze that kept most of the midges at bay.

Day 2: 23.5km: 1000m ascent

Day 2

Woke up to a glorious day but zero wind and Mrs Midge was hungry, I don’t normally like using the DEET (anything that can melt plastic can’t be good for you) but today it was mandatory.

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The stroll up the Corrour Lodge was quite pleasant in the morning sunshine, once across the river I swung east of the trees and followed a burn heading straight up towards Meall Nathrach Mor, a nice cross country ramble, from here easy going led to the summit of Sgor-Choinnich, today providing a nice view down Loch Ossian.

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The traverse over Sgor Gaibhre to Carn Dearg provided great views.

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I lunched at Peters Rock and then headed off down the track toward the hostel.

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The thought of a pint at Corrour Station did cross my mind but I resisted and plodded off north towards Loch Treig, a couple of Duke of Edinburgh groups were pitched up on the southern shore so I continued to Creaguaineach Lodge and pitched up on the ‘front lawn’, a nice level spot with short soft grass;  it’s underwater as far as the OS is concerned and I guess it may be when the loch is full.

Day 3: 14km: 1000m ascent

Day 3

Scottish weather, one day brilliant sunshine the next clag, looking towards Meall Garbh from my camp the cloud was down to around 600m.

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I followed the Allt na Lairige up the glen for around 1km to where it was a simple wade across to the northern side and could see an practical route up the steep slope following a burn.

At around 500m up the southern slopes of Stob Coire Easain, the wall of clag hid the ridge I was to follow to the summit; it didn’t look as though there would be much opportunity for panoramic view today.

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Stob Coire Easain and Stob a’Choire Mheadhoin were crossed in 10-15m visibility which didn’t clear until I’d descended to around 800m.  I always find that walking in thick clag can become a bit surreal, sounds are deadened and objects always look further away than they really are, the only thing that remains constant is the compass needle which I check frequently.

The descent from Meall Cain Dearg is one of those routes that from below looks totally impractical; the descent is quite step in places but nothing technical.

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It was only a hop, skip and a jump back to the car, another little dawdle completed.

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This entry was posted on October 7, 2013 by in Trip Reports and tagged , .
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