Well finally a little bit of summer has arrived. Up until a few weeks ago I was wondering if the tees were ever going to bud and show some greenery!! Finally this weekend we have enjoyed some lovely summer weather and for once I have taken full advantage of it. Heading high into the hills above Lochleven was great on such a nice day - made even better by the snow, which had fallen the day before - still being on the high tops and visibility being fantastic. I then headed to Traprain Hill for a little bit of cragging and once again the sun was shining here - at the other side of the country. Long may this weather continue!!
Report and video below but my pictures can be seen here - some great shots over to Glencoe (if I do say so myself!)
Two Corbetts by Kinlochleven
I decided on Glas Bheinn near Kinlochleven as a bike and hike day. Having previously headed along the track from the road leading to the Mamore lodge I knew that it was ok for a bike and that this would dramatically reduce the walk in and walk out time!!
The forecast was an improving one with blues skies dominating as the day progressed and as such I also had in mind perhaps going up a second hill if the weather was looking good.
I left the car at the gate, not far off the road and a sign stated that no unauthorised vehicles were allowed past this point. The fact that it also said that the gate could be locked t any time made my mind up to leave the car here and not up at the lodge (turns out I was the only one to do this as the lodge car park was full on my return). It does mean a rather steep pull up to the Lodge but also meant a rapid descent route on the bike!!
A steep cycle got me up and past Loch Eilde Mor in around an hour. I had decided to head to the causeway at the east shore of the loch and take a direct route up the hill. This would save time (and also the boggy path!!) to perhaps enable me to fit another hill into the day. A tight schedule was required as my other half was needing me home for 19.00 hrs!! The weather was ok at this point, a bit windy and the tops of the Mamores were in clag but this soon changed. By the time I reached the summit of Glas Bheinn (after a steep pull on pathless ground) the clouds were starting to lift. There had been a late snow fall the day before and the remnants of this snow was seen on the Munros , a few days from June now so hope that it starts to warm up soon!!
It was now 11.00 and I took some pictures and video before setting off for the car. This is where the bike came into its own, and after the highpoint was reached it was a relatively quick cycle down to the car (the path is a little rough in places but ok for a mountain bike).
Back at the car I decided to head for the Corbett of Mam na Gualainn – just along the road. I had planned on heading down into Glen Etive to go up Stob Ban but the timing wasn’t right so headed for Mam na Gualainn instead. To my annoyance I saw that I could have actually headed up this hill from the Mamore Lodge on the bike and save a bit a descent and re ascent – however I only realised this on returning to the car – no point crying over spilt milk etc etc!! haha.
By the time I reached the parking spot near Callert House – the weather was glorious. Really felt like summer and the warm jacket was left in car and the t –shirt left on as I headed up the hill. Sun cream was required too – could this be the start of summer (or Spring!!) at long last?!?!?!. A slow plod got me to the summit around 15.00, however every 2 minutes I was turning to take in the views across Loch Leven to Glence and Ballachulish hills. Bidean and Beinn a ‘ Bheithir stole the show and with clear visibility the landscape looked amazing!
A long pause on the summit and then headed back to the car – reaching it about 16.30.
Got home for 18.15. A great days walking in glorious weather.
P.S. Does anybody know if the Mamore Lodge car park can be used without upsetting anyone as both times I have visited recently I have left the car before the gate which equals a long pull up and a few extra metres of ascent? Would be interesting to get others thoughts on this?
Some thoughts and reports from my outdoors activties...