Knoydart and Meall Buidhe with a 2 night camp May 2007

Date: Friday-Sunday 8th-10th May 2007
Participants: Us
Weather: Hot
Distance: 9.5 + 20 + 12.5km
Ascent: 420 + 1670 + 320m

Thought we’d try and reach our 2 remaining Knoydart munros on a 2 night visit. Left work in Airdrie in early pm and stopped in the Clachaig for tea (new menu with the return of hearty portions!), then on through traffic jam in Fort William and along Arkaig rollercoaster road to road end at 1735hrs.

Crossed fingers that all the kit was in place and headed off through Glen Dessary on a lovely warm evening.

Hiked over the pass under Sgurr na Ciche and pitched tent in the pass at 2030hrs. Quick supper of chocolate and an explosive can of Guinness then watched the midge hoard rise through the tent mesh.

Up at 0700 when sun hit the tent, midge had mainly fled the sun, struck tent (trying new midge jackets).

Wandered further down glen.

I’d identified a pitch at the mouth of the Coire na Ciche a few km down and we dropped the packs here. It was becoming apparent however that we were looking at that rare hillwalking challenge – weather too good, it was hot, hot and still, nice for standing but too hot for walking.

Meandered down to Sourlies. The bottom of this glen is a jumble but beautifully attractive at this time of year. Saw my first golden ringed dragonflies of the year, a few damselflies and some fritillaries.

There were a few car camping tents on the beach, presumably dropped from the yacht as I’d be seriously impressed if someone had yomped in with them.

Easy track to Carnoch and the bridge, fabulous views of Sgurr na Ciche and Ben Aden.

The late start on Friday now caught us up, the heat was pretty intolerable on the ascent of Meall Buidhe and the delay getting to Carnoch from our pitch had us climbing late morning and to be frank we were toiling. The track is good and follows a nice stream into which my head was dunked several times.

Cut off the path and directly up the ridge. Nice waterfall acted as a cold shower and we pushed on to the ridge line.

Easy walking from there to a last pull up Meall Buidhe.

Hazy air limited views but stunning scenery locally from Inverie round Ladhar Bheinn and across to Glenfinnan hills. Rum, Eigg and Skye only just visible. The best aspects of Ladhar Bheinn are hidden from here.

Luinne Bheinn was temptingly close but our pace had been poor in the heat and we reckoned we’d be pushing our time to head round.

I hate those occasions of weighing common sense against the wish to get to the top (indeed one of the best things about having ticked off most of the Munros is being able to take a totally relaxed view of most day’s walking). Decided to turn and head for the tent. The views to Sgurr na Ciche are inspiring.

Heat remained sapping. Lots of head dipping in streams and Platypus was refilled about 3 times. Nice walk along the beach at Sourlies.

Cursed ourselves for leaving the tent at 350m while climbing back up but got back at 1830 cooked noodles with salmon, then retired with a great view to Loch Nevis west and up the Corrie to Sgurr na Ciche and Garbh Chioch Mor. A well earned mug of Shiraz was greatly enjoyed.

Up again at 0600 and walked back under cloud breaking up to get to the car at 1030.

Left with the niggling feeling that we should have pushed on, salt rubbed in the wound by the posts this week describing RUNNING up and down hills on the same day.

I’m off to change my avatar from a ptarmigan to a slug.
a ptarmigan to a slug.

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