Seven of us made it to Glencoe; Robert B, Tim, Susan, Chris H and myself, at the SYHA hostel and Bob and Jane at the Clachaig Inn.
A variety of routes were undertaken on Friday before we all met up at the Hostel. Tim and Susan ticked off another Corbett, apologies don't know which one, Robert B managed the Munros Meall Buidhe and Beinn a'Chreachain on the way over before joining the rest of us and myself and Chris managed 2 Munro's in the Mamores, Beinn Mor and Na Gruagaichean.
The weather was better then expected but it was one of those humid September days with heavy showers and we lost count of the number of times the the waterproofs came on and off, very tiresome. We had excellent views south west over Loch Leven and didn't see a sole all day, quite a contrast to the next day.
Weather improved throughout the day and ineviatably half an hour after coming off the tops the cloud cleared and stayed clear, what else, and then it was capped off with the heaviest shower of the day half an hour from the car, just when we thought we'd get back dry.
Saturday started with some rain but indication of improvement. Tim, Susan and Jane headed for another Corbett whilst Robert B, Chris H and myself headed for Bidean Nam Bian. From the tourist parking half way up Glencoe the route was visible most of the way up and the top of Stob Coire nan Lochan was almost visible through the rain.
We set off, it was relentlessly steep, and relentlessly wet, the forecast relief from the rain didn't materialise and we plodded on. Finally we got relief approaching the top and after being passed by Mr Orange and Mr Camouflage on the way up we saw them disappearing into the mist as we reached the first top. The cloud lifted and we got great views west to the sea but the summit of Bidean Nam Bian stayed stubbornly just in the cloud. We followed the airy and very scambly ridge up to the summit of Bidean, to see Mr O and Mr C disappearing again. The route along to Stob Coire Sgreamhach was like Picadilly Circus compared to the Mamores on Friday with at one point a string of c20 coming up to the bealach from the Lost Valley. We carried onto the quieter summit of Stob Coire Sgreamhach but only just ahead of the aforementioned snake of 20. We made it to the summit in clear weather, and caught up with Mr O, Mr C had disappeared, or his camouflage was doing its job. Robert B suggested we proceed down the Beinn Fhada ridge as there was only a small scrabble and a grassy slope to descend down, we were assured. Excellent route but the buttress scramble is not for those with any issue about heights, and grassy slope has been redefined to include 10ft crags.
We made it down and carried on following the burn down the valley, which made this this route even more noteworthy, following a very powerful impressive burn channeled through narrow gorges and across sculpted granite slabs, to come out on the A82 Glencoe road. Typically the burn had its photo point on the A82 well occupied leaving the impressive bits of the burn 200yds upstream empty but for us, but best that way.
Sunday dawned very similar to Saturday and Tim, Susan and Jane were heading for the Corbett Glas Bheinn east of Kinlochleven, and Robert B, Chris and myself set off early and had a fantastic atmospheric drive over Rannoch Moor with low lying cloud hugging the lochans and sunshine on the hills.
We tackled Beinn Dorain and Beinn an Dothaidh from Bridge of Orchy and again we summited in cloud, after an interesting contour of the mountain after missing the main path in the mist, and only to see the tops on the way down, and again there were people everywhere, we couldn't work out what was different this weekend, we'd never seen so many folks on a Munro. ( Editor: perhaps a last munro party?)
Contribution from Bob
Jane and I had had a few days on Arran before the DHC Glencoe weekend. We took the shorter ferry from the north of Arran from Lochranza across to Kintyre and had a pleasant drive up the edge of Loch Fyne. We stopped of at Loch Awe and rented a canoe for an hour before heading on to camp in the van at the bottom of Glen Etive.
Friday started off a bit overcast and with a few showers. Jane headed off to do the Corbett , Beinn Trilleachan, on the west side of Glen Etive and I headed to the Munros on the east. I set off up Meall nan Eun with the options of trying for 2 or 5 Munros depending on the weather. Fortunately it brightened up as I reached the second summit Stob Coir an Albannaich so carried on to complete the 5 - Glas Bheinn Mhor, Beinn nan Aighenan, and Ben Starav. The cloud kept coming and going, but it was clear on the summits for some fine views down Loch Etive. The final descent down the long north ridge of Ben Starav was hard going on tiring legs. The sight of the van parked on the road at the end of the track was very welcome.
Last winter I'd done the south summit of Buachaille Etive Beag, but I hadn't realised that the smaller north summit , Stob Coire Raineach, was also a Munro so hadn't done it. So this was ideal for a short run on Saturday.
Sunday saw Jane heading to a Corbett up from Kinlochleven with Tim and Susan, so I set off from Kinlochleven to do Na Gruagaichean, Binnein Mor and Beag with the option of doing Sgurr Eilde Mor if time permitted. I made good progress so did all 4 Munros. A good total of 10 Munros for the 3 days helping to boost my Munro count.