Date: Saturday 9th May 2015
The forecast for the Saturday of the Strontian Meet had looked rather pants on the Thursday, however a major shift had a near perfect day on the cards by the Friday forecast.
A clear sky greeted us from the bunkhouse getting up at 0600 – headed out at 0650.
The 2 major thoughts were the Ardnamurchan Ring Dyke walk or a return to Beinn Resipol. We had been rather irked that due to a back injury Hazel only got half way up Resipol on our September 14 revisit so we decided to set this to right.
Essentially repeated September’s route from Resipol campsite.
There’s a marked path up the hill from the caravan site, the small hill track has been replaced by a rather large vehicle over the first 2km (above rather than through the mixed woods), followed by a squelchy ATV track.
The tourist route follows Allt Mhic Chiarain all the way to its source just below the summit – not a great route choice in my mind as it constrains the views N and S by following the coire.
We broke off the ATV track and forded the Allt at about NM 743 653 to ascend Meall Mhic Chiarain and Carn Morn a Comhdail to maximise the views of Loch Shiel.
Once the north edge of this ridge is reached there are great views of the entire length of Loch Shiel from Glenfinnan to Acharacle.
Passed the wee lochans that Hazel had sat at while I visited the summit last time and then pushed on up easy, grassy terrain to Carn Morn a Comhdail.
A splendid viewpoit for the entire length of Loch Shiel – a panorama not seen from the summit.
Spent a fair bit of time watching newts and beetles in the summit lochans, always a distraction in the summer months.
Up to the summit we sat around for nearly 2 hours out of the chilly breeze. A high cloud layer had turned the sunshine rather wan as we arrived but this proceeded to clear to the east as we sat around so that by the time we left we had a near perfect view to the west.
Visibility was also excellent – could see Ben Macdui between Ben Nevis and Creag Meagaidh (120km), Arran and Jura to the south, and hills of South and North Uist to the west (110km).
Resipol is a great place to sit and look – clearer views of Mull, Coll, Tiree, the Small Isles and Section 10a.
A bit more cloud to our east had a more dramatic air to the view. Ventured out east to Leac Chlann Dhomhnuill Mhic Dhughaill for an unobstructed view east.
Eventually decided to head on in search of a bit more warmth, rather nippy for May. Headed back towards the summit then dropped NW back to the large lochan just N of the summit. Found a windless spot in the sun and sat listening to the waves lapping around. Peaceful and pleasant.
Carried on via the reverse of the ascent – we had thought of dropping south over Beinn an Albannaich to the track up from Ardery but the views out to sea had improved as the day went on and we find it difficult to give up sea views.
Wandered round the lochans on Meall Mhic Chiarain. A few greenshanks piped their displeasure at seeing us.
Still fine views to Rum and Eigg.
Back to where I’d met up with Hazel last time – a fine wee lochan.
A pair of Teals were moving from one lochan to another. Can’t remember seeing these before in upland lochans, perhaps they were transitting to somewhere else.
Headed back to the north edge of Carn Mor na Comhdail to enjoy the view.
The summit of Beinn Resipol appears again as the track is regained.
A 9.5hour hands in pockets bimble to cover about a 5 hour walk. Pretty much the way we like it.