Saturday 21 March 2015

Meall a'Chrasgaidh, Sgurr nan Clach Geala and Sgurr nan Each (Fannichs)

Meall a'Chrasgaidh and Sgurr nan Clach Geala, Allt Breabaig Glen and Sgurr Breac from near the start of the walk

Setting off from the same layby on the A832 as last weeks walk, (Sgurr Breac and A'Chailleach) we had our sights, today, on three more of The Fannichs.

Another beautiful day...

Meall a'Chrasgaidh, Sgurr nan Clach Geala, Allt Breabaig Glen
and Sgurr Breac from NH163749

We took the same track to Loch a'Bhraoin, through the wood and across the footbridge over Abhainn Cuileig, before taking the boggy stalkers track south into the glen.

Bridge over Allt Breabaig (NH164749)

Rafe's - Views south to Sgurr nan Clach Geala,
Allt Breabaig Glen and Sgurr Breac

We followed the somewhat intermittent track for a while, looking for a good route up the hillside, the lower slopes of our first Munro of the day - Meall a'Chrasgaidh - to our left. It was all pretty much heather, dead bracken and rocks, without any sign of a break in the defences - we headed off south east - up...

Rafe and Jim - ascent of Meall a'Chrasgaidh

 Leitir Fhearna and Meall an t-Sithe over Allt Breabaig Glen
from ascent of Meall a'Chrasgaidh

It was a bit of a slog (quite a lot of a slog), but in the clear sunshine, the views opening up all around, it was a delight.

The ascent relented eventually and it was a gentle stroll, with glorious views, to the summit - Meall a'Chrasgaidh (Munro 243, 934m).

Sgurr Breac over Allt Breabaig Glen from ascent of Meall a'Chrasgaidh

Leitir Fhearna and Loch a'Bhraoin from Meall a'Chrasgaidh - distant Fisherfield Forest and An Teallach

Fionn Bheinn from ascent of Meall a'Chrasgaidh

Meall a'Chrasgaidh summit (Munro 243, 934m)
Views to Sgurr Mor and Sgurr nan Clach Geala  

Last weeks walk, Sgurr Breac, Toman Coinnich, A'Chailleach and Sron na Goibhre from Meall a'Chrasgaidh

Once the photo fest was completed, we yomped off, around the massive cornice, south east across the bealach above Am Burach to the Munro Top of Carn na Criche, the snowy dome of Sgurr Mor dominating the views ahead.

But the views to the south, Sgurr nan Clach Geala, our second Munro objective of the day, a rocky, serrated ridge blowing snowy clouds across the coire - were awe inspiring...

Rafe and Jim - Carn na Criche, Sgurr Mor Sgurr nan Clach Geala
from bealach at Am Burach

Ptarmigan on bealach at Am Burach

Meall a'Chrasgaidh from ascent of Carn na Criche

Sgurr nan Clach Geala from ascent of Carn na Criche

Sgurr nan Clach Geala ridge

Carn na Criche (Munro Top 136, 961m) with views to Sgurr Mor

Meall a'Chrasgaidh from Carn na Criche summit

We continued on, south west to the lochan at Clach Mhor na Bouchdaich - looking up to the snowfields coating Sgurr nan Clach Geala - definitely time to don the crampons.

Rafe and Jim - Sgurr nan Clach Geala from Carn na Criche

Coire Mor and Eagan Tuill Bhig cliffs on Sgurr nan Clach Geala with Sgurr nan Each beyond

Jim and Rafe - ascent of Sgurr nan Clach Geala

The snow was solid - hard and icy - the crampons a necessity. Even Rafe found it difficult to find purchase on the snow. There were a couple of short scrambles through the rocks, and the going was steep. Cornices hung from the cliffs and ice sculptures from the rocks.

What a day. The pictures say it all...

Carn na Criche and Sgurr Mor from ascent of Sgurr nan Clach Geala

Meall a'Chrasgaidh from Sgurr nan Clach Geala with An Teallach beyond

Sgurr nan Clach Geala ridge

Carn na Criche and Sgurr Mor from Sgurr nan Clach Geala ridge

Sgurr nan Clach Geala ridge

Carn na Criche and Sgurr Mor from Sgurr nan Clach Geala ridge

Sgurr nan Clach Geala (Munro 53, 1093m)

Beinn Eighe massif and Ben Alligin from Sgurr nan Clach Geala

We were at the summit all too soon - Sgurr nan Clach Geala (Munro 53, 1093m) - we stopped for lunch amongst the rocks, just beyond the top - before continuing south towards our third Munro of the day - Sgurr nan Each - across a sinewy ridge.

Last weeks walk, Sgurr Breac, Toman Coinnich and A'Chailleach from Sgurr nan Clach Geala

Sgurr nan Clach Geala summit ridge - views south east

Looking back to the summit of Sgurr nan Clach Geala

Views south west from Sgurr nan Clach Geala

Sgurr nan Each from descent from Sgurr nan Clach Geala

Sgurr nan Clach Geala, Carn na Criche and Sgurr Mor from Cadha ns Guite

Jim and Rafe - ascent of Sgurr nan Each

Nearing the summit of Sgurr nan Each

Looking back (N) to Sgurr nan Clach Geala from ascent of Sgurr nan Each

Sgurr nan Each summit with Loch Fannich beyond

The day just felt like it was getting better and better...

The walking was good and the views stupendous.

Sgurr nan Clach Geala Carn na Criche and Sgurr Mor from Sgurr nan Each summit (Munro 267, 923m) 

We made our way back to the bealach, Cadha na Guite, between Sgurr nan each and Sgurr nan Clach Geala, before striking off the ridge into upper Glen Breabaig.

It was rather damp underfoot, and somewhat slippery at times, but we descended quickly into the wild and pathless glen.

We stopped for a second lunch on a big rock, in the sunshine, just before we passed into the afternoon shadows of the mountains.

Descent into Allt Breabaig Glen from Cadha ns Guite

Further down the glen, a path appeared and improved as we walked north, making it easier going. We forded Allt Breabaig, before it widened and deepened, and were soon back at Loch a'Bhraoin, only slightly footsore.

A tired Rafe - views north along Allt Breabaig Glen

Waterfall on Allt Breabaig views to Meall a'Chrasgaidh and Sgurr nan Clach Geala

Loch a'Bhraoin, Meall an t-Sithe and forest plantation
from stalkers path in Allt Breabaig Glen

And the sunset over the loch just topped everything off...

West over Loch a'Bhraoin from by footbridge (NH158750)

Route:  Layby on A832 west of Breamore Junction (NH163761), SE along road for 100m, SW on track to footbridge (NH158750) via new path through forest plantation (well signposted), continue along track for 50m to NH158749 and turn left (E) onto indistinct quad track, cross footbridge over Allt Breabaig at NH164749 (not marked on OS map) and continue S along quad track through bog above burn, rejoin stalkers path at NH163741 and continue S, at NH764738 (approx) head E up pathless open hillside up Meall a'Chrasgaidh, Meall a'Chrasgaidh summit (Munro 243, 934m), SW to bealach (sh 819m) SE then E to Carn na Criche (Munro Top 136, 961m), W then SW to lochan on bealach and continue up narrow ridge to Sgurr nan Clach Geala (Munro 53, 1093m), S to Cadha na Guite, continue S along ridge to Sgurr nan Each (Munro 267, 923m), return N to Cadha ns Guite, WNW from bealach into coll at head of Allt Breabaig glen, N along stalkers track to ford at NH161741 (if in spate stay on E bank and return to footbride at NH164749), continue N on stalkers path to first footbridge (NH158750), through forest plantation and start.

Statistics:  Distance: 19.5km  Ascent: 1200m  Time: 9 hours

Map: OS Explorer 436 Beinn Dearg & Loch Fannich

Meall a'Chrasgaidh

Sgurr nan Clach Geala

Sgurr nan Each

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