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Loch Voil Weekend

3rd- 4th June 2017 Loch Voil

The weekend of 3/4th June saw a DHC gathering descend upon the Loch Voil Hostel, at the western end of the loch, and west of Balquhidder. This is a rather belated report, and the group took on a variety of activities, so this is a summary of the bits and pieces I can actually remember at this point - so apologies to anyone whose monumental efforts fail to get a mention!

The group comprised Ruth, Steve, Bob, Jane, Robert, Althea, Jeff, Susan, Ali, Gillie and there were a couple or three others, but as I have no photos, my memory is proving inadequate.

One of the main missions for the Saturday was for a sizeable group (7 of us) to tackle Stob Fear-tomhais, pretty much directly south of the hostel, and for those driven by Corbett collecting mania to venture on to Stob a'Chroin. It was a mixed weather sort of day; light winds blowing in occasional showers and cloud, but with sunny intervals in between. It made for some interesting cloud and light effects across surrounding hills.

Photo 1 shows the lovely loch side setting of the hostel as we set out, and following a straightforward track and hack to the summit.

Photo 2 shows the happy throng at the summit - happiness enhanced by Steve's usual chocolate handout.

We then headed off down to the low point between the two target summits, where lunch was taken (Photo 3), at a spot giving great views of Loch Katrine and Ben Venue to the south.

At this point, Althea decided to head directly back to the hut, I (Jeff) headed for a shorter return via Stob Breac (a Graham) with the promise of a nice ridge walk, whilst otherwise Corbett 2 was taken on.

Photo 4 shows the view from Stob Breac looking north towards Stob Binnein and Ben More Crianlarich, and gives a good sense of the dramatic and changing cloud and light conditions during the day.

My descent would have been better if I hadn't opted for the diretissimo through the forest, which turned out to be a tree covered bog, but otherwise gave a pleasant end to the day.

The larger party completed Stob a'Chroin, and then had the longer descent and return. Meanwhile, I believe there was some messing about in the Trossachs, and Bob and Robert headed for Glen Lochay for some Munro bagging, but I am given to believe there was an unfortunate footwear location malfunction that turned Robert into more of a taxi service!

An excellent group constructed pot luck supper, and a beer or two, set us up for Sunday. Here, I've no idea what anyone else did, but Gillie, Althea and myself decided to head up Glen Lochay ourselves, and take on the Corbett Meall nan Subh. For future reference, approach from the north and it becomes trivial. Approach from the south as we did, and you discover vehicular access is more restricted than it once was, and there is a bit more of a road walk in! Nevertheless, a straightforward ascent on a pleasant bright day, achieving the summit.

....and some fine views across Meall Ghaordaidh towards Tarmachan before heading home.

A great weekend. Thanks to Robert for organising - just a shame he didn't spend more of it at higher altitude!

Jeff Dickens

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