Elphin, Sutherland (Apr 2013)

19th – 21st April 2013

Another excellent weekend staying at Taigh nam Famh Hut in Elphin, Sutherland.

There was a good selection of activities including hiking, climbing and of course copious amounts of quality eating & drinking!

Andy, Marten, Cheryl and Fraser, Greg and Carmen

Andy, Marten, Cheryl and Fraser were up at the crack of dawn…6.30am. We drove north past Inchnadamph and left the car on the A894 next to Loch na Gainmhich, below Glas Bheinn. This would be the end point for our mega 20 mile+ walk across one of the most remote areas of Scotland. Greg and Carmen drove us another 5 miles to our starting point across the Kylesku bridge at Kylestrome.

So stage 1 at 8.15am was an easy romp along the north shore of Loch Glendhu on a good track. The weather was cloudy and very windy but thankfully dry. First stop was 7km in at Glendhu bothy, an excellent and spacious 4 room establishment in a superb location. Then the hard work began, following the track up from sea level to where it ends at 400m, although we did take some time out for comedy bridge crossing.

Next was the ascent of Sail na Slataich, 652m, then along a very windswept ridge to the summit of the Corbett Ben Leoid, 792m, which we reached at 1pm. The two figures we had seen on top of the peak turned out to be Greg and Carmen, who had driven round to Loch More on the A838 and walked in from the north. After a couple of group photos we parted company with them once again and descended south to remote Loch an Eircill where we had lunch in warm sunshine, and a stone skipping competition which Cheryl won.

It was now after 2pm, so we did a long traversing ascent to the top of the Stack of Glencoul, 494m, which proved to be a superb viewpoint. Very conscious of the time now, after taking lots of photos, we turned south past Loch nan Caorach looking for a way down into the valley of the Abhainn an Loch Bhig, while enjoying the view across this remote valley to Britain’s highest waterfall, the  Eas a Chual Aluinn which drops 650 ft down the crags of Leiter Dhubh.  Due to a line of crags this proved to be quite difficult, and it was hard going over very broken ground. Eventually we found a way down and then did a rising traverse to pick up the footpath that starts at 300m on the opposing valley wall.

The last stage was a long 4 mile haul up and over the Loch Bealach a Bhuirich plateau to finally descend to our car at Loch na Gainmhich, arriving at the roadside at 7.30pm. Sirloin steak, mushrooms, fried onions with red wine, beer, whisky and Christmas pudding for dessert

Meet report by Andy Murphy

Bernice, Andrew and Allan – Cul Mor

Bernice, Andrew and Allan had a pleasant day climbing Cul Mor. We had excellent visibility and cracking views out to Sullivan, Reiff and surrounding area with interesting rock formations and terrain.

We were down early enough for a trip to Ullapool for coffee and cakes!

On Sunday, I had an early start and headed down to Achnasheen to do Sgurr Ruadh (in not so nice weather conditions it has to be said, although still an enjoyable day) before driving back to Dundee.

Meet report by Allan McCulloch

More reports to follow

More photos