Thursday, 17 March 2011

Above Glen Lochay

A misty, dull day. The car wound its way along the Glen Lochay road towards the day's objective: Beinn nan Oighreag. It is 2983ft high though, according to the SMC guide The Corbetts and Other Scottish Hills, was resurveyed in the 1930s and temporarily found to be a Munro, resulting in "a flurry of activity unequalled to the present." And this was the 1930s! The area certainly felt quiet enough today. There was nobody else about except the local farmers and their stock. This was one of my earliest Munro-bagging areas, easily accessible from Helensburgh, and I hadn't returned for years. The wee narrow road and rocks felt homely, couthy. I had preferred instead to return time and again to the more exciting landscapes of the Blackmount and Glencoe. A red squirrel dashed across the road in front of the car to the sanctuary of some trees, and fortunately I missed hitting it.

Hielan' Coos:

There wasn't much to see in the clag, and I resigned myself to an uninteresting slog up and down. Annoying, as the forecast had been good. But wait - what was that ahead?

Clouds clearing:

A temperature inversion!

Breaking out the clouds:

Looking across Glen Lochay:

I had broken out the clouds at an old summer shieling. The change in warmth, visibility, light and mood was marked. I practically danced up the ridge to the top, revelling in the situation.

Footprints up Beinn nan Oighreag:

The top has a Big View, ennobled by snowy tops. East, the massed bald peaks of the Ben Lawers group. Ben Vorlich south in the sun; Meall Ghaordie's ridges west with the distant rocky peaks of Glencoe beyond. And far to the north, sailling above all, the distinctive white clog of Ben Nevis, Britain's highest peak.

Ben Vorlich in the distance:

Loch Lyon:

I had looked down on this ridge years ago from Meall Ghaordie, thinking that it would be a chore to have to ascend some day. Now here I was, and thanks to the weather it was proving to be a better top than the Munro. I took some more photos, delighted how the day had turned out.

Summit Panorama:


-maria- said...

What a beautiful day it turned out to be! Lovely pictures.

RamblingTart said...

Wow!! What a stunningly gorgeous hike. :-) I'm so glad the weather changed for you. I love these pictures so much.

Robert Craig said...

Glad you like the pics. After always seeming to get out in dull weather have been blessed with some sunny, snowy days recently!