Monday, 10 June 2013

Moal Chean-dearg

Moal Chean-dearg (right) and An Ruadh Stac (behind to the left)
Monday morning was less than perfect as it was raining quite heavily when we awoke. It soon looked as though it might dry up, so we packed our rucsacs hoping that things would get better. From our lodgings we were able to access the mountains without even moving our car, which is just perfect. A long walk in is needed, but it is quite pleasant as the route follows the fast flowing Fionn-abhain with its many waterfalls. The track passes a stalkers bothy and also a curiously shaped stone called Clach nan Con-fionn – a stone which the legendary Giant Fionn is said to have tethered his dogs. 

Bothy Coire Fionnaraich
After about another kilometre we left the main path and headed up hill towards the Bealach a’ Choire Gharbh (pass between two mountains). The weather had improved, but it was still raining and it was hard to judge whether more water was pouring down the path or the stream to our right. The view from the Bealach was quite something, as in front of us lay An Ruadh-stac, which was shrouded in cloud and to our right was the faint track which lead steepily up onto Moal Chean-dearg. In reality it looked steeper than it was. At this point Dawn and Georgina decided to take a slow walk back whilst Sam and I agreed to continue.

The girls made it back safely, but not without incident as Dawn slipped crossing a wee burn and bumped her head. Luckily she was ok.

Heading Towards the Sumit of Moal Chean-dearg
The climb up to the summit for Sam and I was quite strenuous as much of the route is over boulders. Most of the boulders were held solidly in place, but the odd one was lose. This  resulted in a few slight stumbles, which was no good for ankles, or in my case my well-strapped Achilles tendons – yes both legs. Sam managed to fall with his walking pole stuck between a couple of rocks and although his pole saved him, it was a little on the bent side  by the time he got back on his feet. We managed to straighten it enough to be useable, but it will never again be telescopic.

Sam Crossing a Section of Bolders
The summit cairn was very palatial with a nice shelter and comfortable seating. We paused for lunch and the obligatory photographs. 

Sam at the Sumit of Moal Chean-dearg
Bag Looking Quite Thin for Once

With the third Munro bagged, we set off down and on the way we spotted at least three Ptarmigan. 

The giant grey monolith An Ruadh Stac dominated the view to the west. Few mountains appear to be solid rock, but this one certainly gives that impression. We both agreed that climbing it was an adventure that we were both up for another day.

An Ruadh Stac

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