Tuesday, April 24, 2007

26-27 Beinn a'Chochuill (172), Beinn Eunaich (156) (21/04/2007)

Not a great day as we left Mull - lots of mist and forecast of rain throughout the day, so the chance of getting up any mountains was bleak. We decided to forego our plan of climbing Ben Cruachan, since this ridge (which had been described to us as 'classic'), would be better saved for a better day. Later in the morning, however, the mist began to lift a little and there was the suggestion of better to come, so we decided to aim for these two munros and see how far we got. The first part of the walk was along a broad track which took us to about 400m and then we began to trudge up a damp path on the south eastern shoulder of Beinn a'Chochuill. After half an hour of this, when we were entering the mist and the drizzle was at its most persistent, we thought about turning back, since it wasn't going to be much fun if the weather remained the same. We persisted, however, and were glad to have done so, for the wind subsided a little and the drizzle lessened to more of a mizzle and even stopped for periods of time. We got up onto the ridge, then walked west to the summit and then back towards Beinn Eunaich. The mist lifted a little, so that at some parts of the ridge, we had views left and right and got the impression that this would be a splendid vantage point under clear skies. The walk wasn't too tricky, which was a blessing in the mist and the paths were easy to follow - the only slight difficulty was a steepish final descent from Beinn Eunaich to the track. We took about 6 hours.

The slopes of Beinn a'Chochuill enshrouded in mist

25. Ben More (Mull) (189) (16/04/2007)

Setting off from the shores of the loch, it looked to be a good warm sunny day to climb Mull's only Munro. The first hour or so was spent tramping over damp grass, before a preper path emerges. We had decided to opt for the simple route, though one can take the slightly more adventurous option of coming in from the north along a high level ridge. So our path wound up the grass and then scree sloped of the western shoulder. Unfortunately, the small patch of cloud which hid the summit as we began the walk was still there when we reached it at about 800m. It wasn't too thick and we were able to get glimpses through it at the top, but it did mean that our view of the western isles was blocked. The view from 800m was excellent, though. We were also a little surprised that the walk took us less than 4 hours.
A glimpse of the ridge from the top
Jo just below the cloud

View from a nearby nobble a few days later. Our climb started on the far right and followed the skyline to the summit.