A Ghlas Bheinn

A Ghlas Bheinn, 20 March 2020

A blog post from one of our mountain adventures in the Scottish hills and mountains. I was heading out for a proper winter hillwalk doing a route recci up A Ghlas Bheinn at the western edge of Kintail. 

A Ghlas Bheinn

Day 1

We had an event planned in mid-April called the Kintail Bookends and on one of the days we intend to head up A'Ghlas Bheinn. There are various route possibilities up this rugged Munro and I knew from my previous visit the landowner has been discouraging use of the Falls of Glomach Forestry Commision car-park - so time for a revisit to check the area out.

I arrived at Morvich and sure enough the car-park had been moved and a 'No entry to unauthorised vehicles' sign erected at the entrance to the road up the northern side of Strath Croe. So I moved up the road on the south side of Strath Croe and started hiking with my dog Charlie in fine conditions.

Over a bridge on the River Croe, then up a rough path - some rather curious bullocks were showing too much interest in Charlie, so we kept our distance. Through a gate and now more relaxed we dropped to the Abhainn Chonaig, crossing it via a bridge, then picked up forestry tracks. There's been quite a bit of felling around here and work continues. Through the forest and to the first fire-break, it was uphill next, and by heck, it's pretty steep. Still it's direct to A'Ghlas Bheinn's summit. We disturbed some feral goats and I could see a herd of deer higher up. At around 600m the snow-level was reached, soft to begin with, then much icier higher up, needing ice-axe and crampons not long before reaching the summit.

On the summit, the views were stunning. A'Ghlas Bheinn is fairly detatched from the other Kintail peaks, so a 360o view is seen on clear days - like today. Skye's Cuillin Ridge stretched out west, Applecross and Torridon peaks were crystal-clear to the north-west. Turning around, more peaks - Sgurr nan Ceathreamhnan, A'Chralaig and Kintail. I had the place to myself, not even another set of footprints around, simply wonderful !

Although I had a late start (11:15am), I was hoping to also add Beinn Fhada into the day, but descending south from A'Ghlas Bheinn's summit was icy and technical gear was needed for much of the way to Bealach an Sgairne, so slower than I'd hoped. Nope, by the time I got to the junctions in the stalker's paths, I decided instead of heading up Beinn Fhada to enjoy a relaxed walk back to Strath Croe.

As a side note, this day was the day before the Coronavirus sh*t began to really hit the fan ! On the following Saturday, I took the hard decision to postpone the Kintail Bookends event, along with all our other events in April - the Kintail Bookends is now in the calendar for 11-12 September.

More photos by Steven Fallon are here on Flickr.

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