Ulog 14: Serious Bagging - Sgor na h-Ulaidh, a wild and remote Munro

in #ulog2 years ago (edited)

59 Great one of … text.jpg

A spectacular view of Bidean nam Bian and Ben Nevis (at the far left).

Last weekend I brought my Munro bagging total up to 86, on a hillwalk with a different Meetup group, and organised by someone else.

To recap, I'm on a mission to climb all of Scotland's "Munros", or hills with an altitude of at least 3,000 feet (914.4m) or more. There are 282 of them.

For now, my goal is to reach 100 Munros, and I'd like my 100th Munro to be Ben Nevis.

The back of beyond

This walk took in just one single hill, Sgor na h-Ulaidh (pronounced Scurr na hoolie). It's in a remote location, between two great glens in the west of Scotland: Glencoe and Glen Etive.

We had quite a lengthy walk just to get to the foot of the mountain, so the trip took us seven and a half hours.

1 Walking towards Sgor na h-Ulaidh, Meall Ligiche on right.jpg

Walking to the foot of Sgor na h-Ulaidh.

Sgor na h-Ulaidh is in the west of Scotland, between Glencoe and Glen Etive.

Map Sgor na h-Ulaidh.jpeg

There are few paths on this route, and the ones that are there are rocky and boggy, so you're constantly jumping over rocks and bogs, or walking up a wild hillside.

3 Lovely green river, the Allt na Muidhe.jpg

Sgor na h-Ulaidh is also notoriously steep, which I actually quite like. My legs have become strong due to regular hillwalking and indoor climbing, and I love rocky scrambles.

22 Another good vertiginous one of Ian and others clambering up the steep rocky hillside.jpg

Sgor na h-Ulaidh is notoriously steep.

When you're climbing up a steep hill, you can cover a lot of altitude pretty quickly. So this was a hillwalk I really enjoyed, especially as the views from the top were spectacular!

27 Fantastic one of Fraochaidh, part of Beinn Fhionnlaidh and Glen Creran out to Mull.jpg

Beinn Fhionnlaidh, Fraochaidh to the right, and views out to the Isle of Mull.


39 Views to Loch Leven.jpg
Views over Loch Leven.


49b Great one of Nevis with someone's cap copy.jpg
Ben Nevis.

And it was my 86th Munro, meaning I have just 12 more Munros to do if I want Carn Mor Dearg and Ben Nevis to be my 99th and 100th Munros.

So I did a silly pose.

42 Me trig point daft 2 copy.jpg

As a group walk, it was very sociable. I think you bond with people when you're sharing an activity in the great outdoors, and there were some great conversations – although maybe not quite so many as during the Beinn a'Ghlo walk the week before, because we spent a lot of time short of breath as we panted our way up the steep hillside, or watching our feet as we stepped over rocks and bog on the less steep paths.

57 Heading down.jpg

Even heading down the hill was a tricky business.

After we'd puffed our way to the summit and then carefully picked our way back down the other side, we realised that we had to go over another hilltop, Stob an Fhuarain. It doesn't have Munro status, but it did give us some more beautiful views.

60 Great view of Beinn a'Bheithir.jpg

Beinn a'Bheithir and Loch Leven from Stob an Fhuarain.

After the walk, we went to the well-known Clachaig Inn for drinks in the afternoon sunshine. I didn't spend too long there, as I was going out with friends that evening, to a pizza restaurant, meeting a friend who had emigrated to Canada and was coming back for a visit.

66 My pint, Lynn and Clachaig sign copy.jpg

A half pint of Kelpie Ale at the Clachaig Inn...

Pizzas! Pic by Mandy.jpg

...then pizza followed by cheesecake and ice cream at Paesano's in Glasgow. You have to replace the calories after a big hillwalk!

This was a very busy weekend for me. The following day I was organising another hillwalk for my own Meetup group – one I'd done before, so it wasn't a Bagging trip for me. Unfortunately the weather broke down and it became quite a challenging day!

I'll write about it in my next post.

Hills divider.jpg

Previous Serious Bagging posts:

Ulog #8: Serious Bagging, my mountain mission!

Ulog #9: Serious Bagging, Day One – Creag Meagaidh in threatening weather

Ulog #10: Serious Bagging, Day Two – climbing Bidean nam Bian, a big beast of a mountain!

Ulog #11: Serious Bagging, Day Three/Four – Two beautiful mountains near Loch Treig

Ulog 13: Serious Bagging – The three Munros of Beinn a'Ghlo

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That looks like so much fun!! I would totally do that if I lived in that area.. when I lived by the rockie mountains I hiked a few 14,000 fts. There is nothing like climbing above the treeline and being able to see everything.. 😎

14,000 feet is very high! Our highest mountain is 4,411ft. But they are so wild and beautiful. I feel lucky to live relatively close to the mountains, and to know so many people who love to climb them with me.

Have been to London this summer and I already with to visit Scotland too! The pizza seems well done, as well, which is a sure plus from an Italian @natubat 😁

The pizza was delicious! And Scotland is so beautiful - you should definitely try to visit. The only downside is the weather and the midges.

I have to ask, how many of your hill walking group and baggers are on steemit with you ? I would think with that much time to talk and visit you would have recruited a whole bunch of them over here.
I noticed a lot of reddish tones in one of the pictures of the rocks, most of the hills you have climbed have been the slate grey colored rocks. Was that pretty much an abnormality for that area for the stones to be reddish colored or I have I just not been paying close attention to the previous pictures ?

I don't know of any of my fellow hillwalkers who are on Steemit - and believe me, that's not for lack of trying! I've frequently posted my Steemit posts on the Meetup event page and on Facebook, and I've had great comments from my friends on these posts. But... no actual sign-ups (as far as I know). I had a similarly blank response when I became an early adopter of Ethereum and told all my friends and family they should sign up!
One thing that interests me about the mountains I climb is that each group in a specific area often has a particular rock characteristic. Many of the Glencoe hills have those reddish coloured rocks, and that might be the reason that some of them are named Stob Dearg, which means the Red Peak.

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Which one is it, Red or Blue?

It looks steep, but photos never do them justice to how scary it is being up these. I have yet to come down a big scary one, I always descend using the wimp trail.

I like the graphics! It's the red one. Some people do the blue one, which is called Meall Ligiche, on the same circuit, but we wanted to get back by early evening. I don't like scary descents either - walking poles help though.

I think we are the only ones about who don't have those poles. I don't seem to have the correct 'dress' either looking at all these serious climber types. @bingbabe is better than me, but t-shirt on tops of mountains blowing a gale just isn't so good.

Speaking of gales, that's what scares me the most up there. I don't want to be blown off the top.

There's no "correct dress", but it's a good idea to bring layers of clothing, as the temperature can change dramatically in the hills! Poles are recommended, as they can really take the weight off your knees and prevent injuries, as well as helping to steady you on steep descents. And they can help you get up a steep hill faster too.
A couple of times i have abandoned a hillwalk near the top due to high winds. Always best to err on the side of caution! But you can tell if the wind is strong enough to blow you over, or just difficult to walk in.

Thats an impressive challenge to do 100 Munros ( a term I had never heard of) and this climb and hike looks such a beautiful area and what amazing views

Thanks @tattoodjay! It's a fun challenge, especially as most of the mountains are in such beautiful locations. Munros got their name from the man who first assessed their elevations and climbed them, about 100 years ago, Sir Hugh Munro :)

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