Lochcarron 21st - 23rd August
From an initial (pre-covid) wishlist of ten participants, only four hardy, DHC athletes (Jane, Bob, Robert and Iain) made-it to Loch Carron. Unusually, the Munro-ists out-numbered the Corbett-eers and we were fortunate to have the use of a lovely house on the main street. Thanks, Patrick!
The previous two weeks had seen gorgeous, sunny, calm weather on the West Coast, but our trip was timed to co-incide with the arrival of storm Ellen.
On the Friday, Iain solo-ed Munros: Moruisg and Sgurr nan Ceannaichean, only to be informed that the latter had been demoted to a Corbett after his (1984) guide-book had been published. Anticipating meeting Ellen near the summit, he left his midge-repellent in the car and enjoyed some minor blood-letting in the uniformly calm conditions. Also worth noting is that the path marked on the OS map has been largely subsumed into the bog. Jane and Bob joined the party Friday evening (staying in their camper-van) and we all enjoyed a very agreeable dinner at the French Bistro.
Saturday dawned wet and got wetter as the day progressed, so Bob and Iain decided to conquer Maol Chean Dearg to the north of Lochcarron. Unlike Moruisg, this Munro benefits from an excellent stalkers path most of the way to the summit. There is also a welcoming bothy at Clach nan Con-fion, whose facilities were used to change emphasis from midge, to water-repellant. On reaching Bealach a Choire Garbh at 587m, the rain turned to fog, but the path remained conspicuous all the way to the massive, sheltering cairn, where we enjoyed lunch while Bob described the excellent vistas that lay behind the fog. Jane explored the coastal paths around Ardaneaskan. Robert joined us for dinner in Patrick’s house, which included an excellent home-grown courgette tart and a very agreeable Sauvignon Blanc.
The main-event of the weekend was Sunday's ascent of remote Munros: Lurg Mhor and Bidien a Choire Sheasgaich (aka Cheesecake). Re-inforcements arrived in the form of a well-rested Robert and the decision was made to access both mountains by bike from the lovely Attadale gardens. The first kilometer is on a smooth tarmac estate road, which then turns into a steep gravel track, recently enhanced by the newly installed run-of-river hydro-electricity development. This was probably the toughest part of the day as it was hard to push (or cycle) the bikes up the hill faster than midges can fly. However, once the highest part of the road was reached, the long, smooth descent to Bendronaig bothy was quite exhilarating. Both mountains are quite straightforward and afford excellent views of Skye and Torridon. The bikes made the return to Attadale quick and easy. Jane went to Torridon (please insert a fuller description here).
Monday dawned beautifully calm and sunny, but we were all too knackered to climb anything (Bob and Jane did some scary-looking cliff-stuff).