Monday, October 25, 2010

Buachaille Etive Beag

Stob Dubh Summit
Stob Dubh (Buachaille Etive Beag)

One final walk for the October holidays - a smash and grab across Rannoch Moor to Glen Coe.

Stob Coire Raineach and Stob Dubh
Munros: #96 & #97
Date: Tuesday 19th October 2010
Distance: 8.6km
Time: 4hrs 30mins (Car to Car)

After a rendezvous with my brother at the Green Welly for coffee and bacon rolls, we narrowed our choice down to hills at Bridge of Orchy or Glen Coe. As we approached Bridge of Orchy, the summits were covered. Figuring that Buachille Etive Beag was lower and possibly cloud-free we carried on across Rannoch Moor.

Bad mistake? The entrance to Glen Coe looked like a portal to hell - black cloud and a blizzard filled the entrance to the glen and we were battered on the drive down to the new car park at the beehive cairn.

However, it transpired to be a passing shower and cleared up as we parked up. Booting up, there were only a handful of cars in the car park and we were off by 1000.

From other trip reports, I wasn't looking forward to to potential bogfest going up the hill, but I can report that the pathworks are now complete. There's a cracking gravel path to the bottom of the steep section and then one of the best set of stone steps I have come across which goes all the way to the bealach. 

Lifting Cloud
The cloud is lifting as we start our ascent.

Walkers ascend the steep path up ahead.

View From The Bealach I
Mike looks down to Pass of Glencoe and the A82 in the distance.

At the bealach, the wind was a little stronger, and cold, and I donned my winter jacket for the first time this season. We then hung a left and began the ascent of Stob Coire Raineach. In no time we were on the summit. The wind was doing a good job of clearing away the low cloud and the views were beginning to open out. 

Aonach Eagach
Low cloud hangs above the Aonach Eagach ridge. From the upper slopes of Stob Coire Raineach.

View From Stob Coire Raineach
Blackwater Reservoir and Rannoch Moor from Stob Coire Raineach summit.

Buachaille Etive Mor
Buachaille Etive Mor from Stob Coire Raineach summit.

Brothers Grimm
Brothers Grimm on Stob Coire Raineach.

After a short break lower down the hill to get out of the wind, we dropped back to the bealach and started on the second hill. The weather was improving and we were starting to get some great views. 

View To Stob Dubh
View To Stob Dubh from the descent of Stob Coire Raineach.

More Up
Mike contemplates 150m of ascent to the Stob Dubh ridge from the bealach.

The pull up onto the ridge is steep but short and in no time we were onto the flat section leading towards Stob Dubh. 

Back To Stob Coire Raineach
Looking back To Stob Coire Raineach from the top of the ridge to Stob Dubh.

Bidean Nam Bian and Aonach Eagach
Panorama of Bidean nam Bian and the Aonach Eagach ridge.

Final Push
The final stretch of the ridge towards Stob Dubh.

One final rise to the summit of Stob Dubh and the views were fantastic.. 

Dubh View
Panorama from Stob Dubh looking along Glen Etive to Loch Etive.

Glen Etive
Looking down Glen Etive to Loch Etive from the summit of Stob Dubh.

Stob Dubh Summit
Stob Dubh. Munro #97

Bear Bags Two
Fourth Munro for Nursery Bear.

Noticing the weather coming in behind us, we descending off the summit. We made our way back along the flat section of the ridge, where we dropped slightly East out of the wind and snow to eat our lunch. I wouldn't have wanted to drop my flask here - it wouldn't stop until it got to the Lairig Gartain 500m below! 

Time To Go
A big lump of weather approaches. Looking back to Stob Coire Raineach.

Lunchtime. Sheltering on the steep slopes to avoid the snow. Looking across to Buachaille Etive Mor. No soup was spilled.

After the lunch stop, it was back to the bealach and back down the steep stone steps to the car at 1430. 

Snowy Bealach I
Mike looks back at the descent from the Stob Dubh ridge as another snow shower hits.

GPS Elevation Data


Plumbago said...

I wish my GPS could give as sensible altitude output as yours seems to. Walks that we do frequently start and end at a location whose altitude has seemingly radically changed during our absence. And I now almost routinely use Geosetter to automatically supply the altitude information retrospectively when I marry my GPS data with photographs. Ho-hum.