Wednesday, April 06, 2011

127. Beinn Liath Mhor Fannaich(209). 02/04/2011

We didn't get swept away in the night, although the tent poles were bending inwards with the wind at times - we weren't as sheltered as we thought from the gale force winds. We were a little surprised by the mode of precipitation during the night though; we awoke to 3 inches of snow covering the tent(!) and it was still falling outside. Also it turned out that Christian had been awake most of the night due to the thinness of his sleeping bag - even hot porridge struggled to lift his spirits.

Anyway, we were worried that the weather had turned for the worse and didn't really fancy the idea of gale force winds coupled with blizzard conditions, therefore we resolved to make for the nearest road to the north rather than atttempt the ridge. This would at least allow us to take in Beinn Liath Mhor Fannaich on the way out. Packing the tent away was interesting with numb fingers and the snow still falling, but we managed it in good order. It really had proved to be a great tent - I hadn't really appreciated it previously having not had to push it to the limits.

Tramping down across the corrie and up the slope on the other side was something we thought might be slightly uncomfortable in the conditions, but actually the terrain wasn't too bad under the snow and the stream we had to cross was managed dry-shod. We reached the ridge between Sgurr Mhor and BLMF, which was now blanketed in snow and quite pictureque - we momentarily considered taking in Sgurr Mhor too, but the fact that the wind was now back up to howling volume meant we continued walking out.

With the gale now at our backs and with the precipitation more or less finished, we were able to get up the final slope to BLMF without too much ado and from the shelter of the summit cairn we enjoyed the clear view of Easter Ross, which was jolly pleasant.

It wasn't the most comfortable of descents over rough ground down to the glen in the north, but we got there eventually and were then able to hitch a lift to the Alltguish Inn for a pint and a scone. By this time of course, whatever the Scottish version of Murphy's Law is had come into effect and we were provided with very good weather almost making us wish we hadn't decided to escape. Still, better to be safe than sorry.

The excellent weather by the time we'd fully descended

BLMF from the ridge

Christian at the summit of BLMF

Our campsite in the morning


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