Sunday, 7 August 2011

Glencoe, the Lost Valley & Stob Coire Sgreamhach

I'm going to forgive the weathergirl for a change as she got it reasonably correct on Saturday.

What a nice change it was to go for a climb and actually see the surrounding views.

The targets for the day, were a 'walk-in' to the Lost Valley in Glencoe, followed by the climb to the bealach between  Stob Coire Sgreamhach & Bidean nam Bian.

As is usual, very little went to plan.

The initial hour went swimmingly well with the whole group in an organised chain heading up the approach.

Doing the Conga

Then it took an interesting turn as the group split, with my 5 taking the valley route towards the Lost Valley whilst the rest opted for the scree slopes which resulted in them doing an about turn and retracing their steps before finding the path again, which left our 5 having a good 45 minutes to ourselves awaiting the catch-up.
We were on our first casualty by this time as one of my group had taken a tumble on the approach, dropping 15ft from a rock on the scramble approach.

Entering the valley

5...soon to become 4

One nice thing we came across was the tame chaffinches who were more than happy to share lunch.

Tame Chaffie

Atop the 'wee hoose' in the valley

After the feeding session, it was onwards and upwards, heading for the bealach. The views from behind were getting better and better as we gained height with Nevis starting to poke its head out from the distant mountains.  After an hour of a nice easy path, we started passing the waterfalls which looked tempting for a mid-walk shower.

Looks tempting for a shower....

Then the slog starts up the zig-zag path, and disaster strikes for me and my left calf muscle takes a hammering, leaving me half crippled and having to start dropping back further and further from the group. Still, I made the bealach and rejoined the others, so we abandoned the rucksacks there and headed off to summit  of Stob Coire Sgreamhach.

Trying to smile through the pain..

The girls are smiling for real..

So, after a brief 2 minutes at the summit, we headed back down to the rucksacks, where I opted to be the bag watcher, whilst the rest headed off to tackle Bidean.  At least I had a nice easy rest and a chance to take in the amazing scenery.

looking down into the valley.

Then it was time for the walkout, and halfway down, the storm clouds gathered, and soon we were in a deluge, but at least on the way back to the bus.

So, today is recovery Sunday and I reckon my walking is goosed for 4 weeks until the muscle tear heals.  Looks like no excuses for not working weekends now.  As for Bidean.....well, it's been there for a long time and will be there again when I decide I'm recovered enough to go finish this route.

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