Our blog - Creag Meagaidh and neighbours, Apr'17A blog of our mountain adventures in Scotland, hiking, biking, rock-scrambling and more !
Creag Meagaidh and neighbours15-16 April 2017
A weekend of hiking up Creag Meagaidh and its neighbouring Munros. Richard was leading...
I met up with Louisa, Darren, Nick and Neil at the Creag Meagaidh carpark to be greeted by a cold heavy shower with a fresh wind accompanying it! The waterproofs were on and stayed on most of the day, but not for the rain as it would turn out. We made good time along the lovely Coire Ardair path and were treated to some bursts of sunshine and views of fresh snow on the higher ground. It was quite straightforward up the window in the end with the odd hard patch of old snow easily avoidable as long as care was taken through the boulders covered by fresh snow.
At the top of the window the wind was blowing in though not as strongly as predicted. We wasted no time in climbing up onto the plateau and into the white room where the winds increased and wind blown ice and snow blasted us whilst navigating round to the summit of Creag Meagaidh. The views appeared briefly as we were about to depart the summit giving us a real treat and some gorgeous fresh windblown snow deposits.
Our return journey to the window went quickly and we even visited the impressive Mad Megs cairn complete with views. At the window we found some shelter for lunch before setting off up Stob Poite Coire Ardair and into the strong winds though no fresh snow falling on this summit. It wasn't the weather to linger here long and we walked on in the wind that was fierce at times and met the only other hillwalker we saw today coming the opposite way. Realising the wind wasn't letting up we headed for the miniwindow where a wee hollow allowed us some relative shelter for a drink and snack as the wind was making for a wild walk today.
The sunshine came out as we emerged from another wild wintery squall and climbed onto Carn Liath our final summit of the day where we enjoyed the views back to the Creag Meagaidh hills and Coire Ardair looking fantastic! The descent was fairly easy and the wind eased off as we lost height allowing us to bask in the sunshine for afternoon tea before catching one more wet squall before a sunny finish to the carpark. A truly fantastic day on a majestic mountain!
The second day I met up with Louisa, Neil and Rich the others having headed home and the weather was meant to be better though we soon entered the cloud and fresh snow on our way up Beinn a'Chaorainn. It's always a long climb, but the snow made for interesting going and the temperature plummeted as fresh snow started to fall on us. After layering up and reaching the southern summit we made our way carefully though poor visibility to the true summit skirting the impressive cornice along the way though we couldn't see all of it in the cloud. The weather wasn't too bad, but we didn't linger in the cold cloud long and continued the traverse round the northern summit and down towards the beallach between Beinn a'Chaorainn and Beinn Teallach.
Suddenly we emerged from the cloud and had some great views towards Glen Roy and our next summit. A large boulder gave us a lovely picnic table for lunch and while we chatted and ate the cloud lifted from Creag Meagaidh a little to reveal the window looking very wintery. It didn't take us long to cross the beallach and climb up Beinn Teallach where we were greeted by the sunshine and improving views ensuring that we would remain on the top for an afternoon snack. Every direction we looked in more and more hills were slowly revealing themselves as the cloud lifted. Our group were in high spirits as we descended through the fresh snow drifts in the sunshine with some fantastic views opening up all the time.
We made good time down the lower slopes where bog, moss, grass and heather make for a bouncy walk to the river crossing guarding our return route to the cars. It was a very easy crossing today and the layers were coming off as we walked back through the forestry to the cars in soaring temperatures. Another enjoyable day in good company in beautiful spring weather!
More photos by Richard are here on Flickr.
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