Distance walked: 9.0kms (5.4mls)
Time taken: 3hours 12mins
After much chopping and changing I finally settled for a weekend in the Loch Lomond area of Scotland in company with Karen. The logistics of travelling up to Scotland to first pick up crampons and an ice axe then heading further North to Ardgartan with enough time to get in a decent walk was proving to be a bit of a headache. I met Karen, who had travelled up from near Glasgow in the car park at Ardgartan and we travelled together to the start which was on the Cowal Way. The weather forecast promised to be cloudy with the chance of rain.
We set off along the Cowal Way and the track was immediately unpleasant as it had been severely churned up by the logging vehicles which frequent the area. The first 2 kms was up Coilessan Glen which is heavily wooded before we reached the edge of the woods. After going thought a wooden gate we made for the bealach which separated the two corbetts Cnoc Coinnich and The Brack. We had talked about reaching both today, weather permitting of course. Karen decided we should head for Cnoc Coinnich first and as I didn’t mind either way of nodded my agreement as I was already on my way. The ground was already sodden and was like walking across thousands of wet sponges. Despite the fact it was only a further kilometre to the cairn I was feeling a bit weary, possibly the result of too few hours of sleep after a night shift. It had been drizzling all day and as we reached the top of Cnoc Coinnich the rain started properly. We didn’t linger as the wind had also picked up and the views were none existent. After heading back towards the bealach I checked with Karen to see if she still fancied bagging The Brack considering the terrible weather. She had already bagged that top several years ago and I didn’t want to climb up in the rain so we decided not to bother. We descended back along the muddy track and were quickly changed into dry clothes and on our way. No photos today didn’t want to get anything wet.
Distance walked: 7.9kms (4.9mls)
Time taken: 5 hours.
Had an early night due to a rotten headache and woke early. We set off for Butterbridge with the intention of again walking to the top of two Corbetts, Binnein an Fhidhleir and Beinn Luibhean. We parked up near Butterbridge around 9am and set off towards Creag Bhrosgan. I jumped over a wire fence to avoid the worst of the bog lower down but Karen thinking it didn’t look particularly bad walked through it and her right leg quickly disappeared into the water/grass. There was no point in attempting to keep our feet dry today, the ground from start to finish today was sodden. The cloud was down to about 300mts and we couldn’t make out much of the way ahead. We got to about 150mts and Karen mentioned that we needed to look for the gully which would give us the easiest access to the higher crags to Creag Bhrosgan. As usual the gully appeared frightening in the cloud but as we got closer and started to climb it wasn’t particularly difficult, that would come a bit later.
We then continued to pick our way through the the crags in the relentlessly steep climb. After finally reaching the pile of stones at the height of 817mts we headed off in a Westerly direction towards Creag Bhrosgan
We were walking in cloud for the next hour unable to see where it was we needed to be, Walking onto several false summits until we finally reached the trig point at Creag Bhrosgan. Once again we didn’t stick around too long, it wasn’t particularly cold or wet it was just that with the low cloud it wasn’t worth hanging around, We retraced our route and managed to make good time to the stones.
Almost immediately the steep descent started and it became clear that going down was going to be even more difficult then the coming up. About half way down I didn’t place me foot properly and slipped down the hill for about 10metres. The only injury was to my pride. I slipped several more times heading down and we eventually reached the car at 2pm, 5 hours after setting off.
Karen at Creag Bhrosgan trig.
Once again we decided we didn’t have enough time, in the low cloud to make the second top and headed back to Karen’s house.
Despite the pants weather had a good weekend. Thank you to Karen for putting me up for the night and for the headache tablets.