99 - Where's my flake?
A few weeks ago when I was updating my hill log on Scottish Hills I noticed that I wasn't far off ticking my 100th Munro. Now for some that's more than a third of the way to completing but for me its just about keeping a record of what hills I've done. It started off as a book I recorded stuff in when I was getting back into walking after the stress fracture of my tibia and needed to know what aggravated it. Steve then introduced me to his Munro spreadsheet ;-) and the hill logger on Scottish Hills, hence I now know how may Munros I've done.
When we saw the weather forecast for the weekend it was obvious that East was a better option and after scouring the books plumped for Beinn a' Ghlo. Most of the eastern hills have passed me by as I've preferred the rougher western counterparts but these 3 Munros looked like they could be a nice wee leg stretch.
It was 1045 by the time we got to the car park and as normal appeared to be the last to set off though there were a few other peeps just in front. All looked good on the weather front and the first views of Carn Liath looked inviting.
Although the books describe the route as being on loose eroded path we made very good progress and found ourselves on the summit of Carn Laith in 1 1/2 hours. This may have had something to do with the fact that I knew there was a dug in front and I wanted to catch up with it ;-)
Catch up with it I did and soon Sunny & I were the best of mates. If I could have kidnapped him I would have.
Elaina & Sunny on Carn Laith
Onwards to number two, Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain "Height of the corrie of round blisters" - heaven knows why it has that as a name as it was a pleasant wee hill really.
Steve looking towards Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain
The wind had picked up a bit and although the sun was shining I was feeling it a bit nippy so donned Montane Lite-Speed jacket which someone once referred to as my ribena berry look with my purple buff!! It did the trick 3 hours after leaving the car park we were on the summit of number Munro number 2 where we met another 3 people. They very kindly offered to take a photie of Steve and I. Oh how it made us chuckle when we saw it so I've included it here :-)
Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain summit
This is where we parted company with Sunny and his owner, though I'm sure Sunny would much have preferred to continue with us. On looking at the map you brace yourself for a big drop and pull up to get to the third hill, Carn nan Gabhr but in fact the path makes easy work of it. As Steve was starting to get twitchy at being on a path for so long he decided to take the direct approach and gave himself a wee bit more work. The summit ridge is rather entertaining with its collection of 3 very large cairns with a trig point in the middle one. Steve and I met up at the third cairn and got the obligatory celebratory summit shots. Amazing 3 Munros in 4 hours 10 minutes :0)
Carn nan Gabhr summit
Celebrating number 99 - no flake though
Looking back to the large summit cairn of Carn nan Gabhr
We'd had a bit of debate about what was going to be the best route down. We'd seen the path that goes from the beallach but decided that it looked a better prospect to go onto Airgiod Bheinn. Seemed a good idea at the time but I was soon cursing it as it was on one of my hated descents loose, rocky steep crap. Bang goes doing the hills in record time.
Out came the Mountain King Trail Blaze Poles, one of the best pieces of kit I have purchased. The help a lot with my balance and eyesight issues in descent and although I'm still slower than most at least I'm not on my backside like I used to be on terrain like this.
I was rather glad when we got onto the heathery stuff and then it was onto the boggy peat for the yomp out. Steve made a very entertaining somersault that even I had give him credit for - miles better than my usual arse planting of which there was only one minor slip on this outing.
We were making good time on the way out and soon caught up and overtook the three women we had met throughout the day. Yeah we weren't going to be the last car in the car park!! :0)
As Steve has a bit of an aversion to the A9 I had already worked out he would want to go back any other way so was not surprised when he said about heading Crianlarich way. Of course this was nothing to do with the fact that we get withdrawl symptoms if we don't get a fortnightly helping of the best fish & chips in the highlands from the Real Food Cafe - perfect end to the day :0)