Tuesday, 8 August 2017


James & Alistair on An Teallach
Early on Monday morning I departed Chamonix, less than 12 hours later I arrived in an even better mountaineering centre, Ullapool, by public transport. Not bad going. I travelled direct to the North West Highlands for a day of guiding on An Teallach, the finest mountain on the planet. Father and son in law team had travelled all the way up from Sheffield (Alistair from London) for a day of spectacular mountain walking and scrambling. This was James's 60th Birthday present from his daughter. What a gift! The weather forecast was reasonable too with some sun and just a few showers forecast.
Fisherfield Forest from Sail Liath
Grand views into Toll an Lochan
The classic traverse of this magnificent mountain begins from Corrie Hallie with a long approach walk to the foot of the first ridge, Sail Liath. An Teallach has many ridges, spurs and 'Munro Tops'. It's an easy walk with a reasonable path to the first of our summits today. From the top there are wonderful views into the Fisherfield Forest and to the Beinn Dearg Munros. We had lovely sunshine and great cloud formations. From here you get the first glimpse of the spectacular Corrag Buidhe Pinnacles.
Sail Liath ridge
Loch na Sealga & Beinn Dearg Mor
The fun begins!
Shortly after the descent off Sail Liath the fun begins on the pinnacles of Corrag Buidhe. This series of spectacular Torridonian Sandstone rock towers are a delight for scrambling on. This was Alastair's first taste of scrambling. James has already got a few classic Scottish scrambles under his belt. These pinnacles, towers and ridges do have bypass paths but then you miss all the fun! The guys soon got into the swing of it and they were soon grinning and loving the exposure.
Cloud adding to the fabulous scenery
James in full concentration
Alistair loving it
Up and down scrambling
Halfway across the Corrag Buidhe the cloud drifted in and we started to get a few drops of rain. This added to the atmosphere of the day. Torridonian sandstone is still nice and grippy even when wet so the rain didn't make anything more difficult. The boys were looking forward to the final tower, Lord Barkeley's Seat. This famous pinnacle overhangs the Toll an Lochan and can be quite unnerving, the cloud made the exposure less severe!
Narrow, scrambling
Looking back to Lord Barkeley's Seat
Pointy and narrow
Final scrambling to Sgurr Fiona
After the fun of Lord Barkeley's it's just a final easy scramble to the first Munro summit of Sgurr Fiona. Unfortunately we had no views from the summit. A bit chilly on the tops but these guys are tough, wearing shorts in the rain. Not for me! The ridge that links the two Munros is just straightforward hillwalking. Within an hour we were stood on Bidein a' Ghlas Tuill, the highest point on An Teallach. From here there are magnificent views but not today. We ambled back down to Dundonnell for a grand 10 hour day and a full traverse of the mountain. The boys were chuffed to pieces. A brilliant day out and great craic all the way along. We saw just two folk all day! Next stop, Skye!

No comments: