All posts by Jon Shutt

Sept 2017 Work Meet Report

A wee update on activities at the hut at the weekend.

13 people came along to the work meet on Saturday – Jojo, Jon, Katie, Colin S, Sue, Alison, Hannah, Colin H, Iain, and guests Sonal, Ally, Alistair and Fiona. We got through all the jobs on the list and some more – all done by mid-afternoon. The hut now has hooks in the shower-room and a few other improvements. It is also extremely clean. We enjoyed the excellent pies and desserts courtesy of Alan Clark, with the enormous multi-layer strawberry and cream cake being my favourite.

The next day those of us remaining put up some posters in the ranger centre car park to advertise our “open hut” afternoon. Printer problems meant the posters were hand drawn with the aid of some wine the night before. Fortunately Fiona had brought along a pencil case full of colouring pens.

Katie, Jon, Jojo, Alison and Sonal enjoyed a walk up to Loch Brandy and did a little yoga after the climb under Sonal’s tuition. Iain, Alistair and Fiona also went for a walk nearby.

By mid-afternoon reinforcements for the Social Meet were beginning to arrive – Moira, Tony and Ken. Unfortunately unforeseen circumstances meant we had a couple of cancellations – but they still baked cake for us, couriered by Moira and Tony. True commitment to the club. This was scoffed down by the 6 guests who were lured in by our posters and are all
potentially interested in becoming members.

All in all an enjoyable and relaxing weekend. Very different to the work meets some of you will remember from the early days of the hut – now the hut is up and running the time pressure is off and all the heavy work is done. Not one rock was moved or a shovel lifted!

Best wishes,
Katie

Secretary
CDMC

Sept 2017 Meet Report

This month’s meet was held at the Galloway Activities Centre on the eastern shore of Loch Ken (www.lochken.co.uk).

Five club members attended the meet for the weekend: Alan, Janet, Lindsay, Vania and Jim (coordinator and author). Six places in two rooms had been booked by Alan but there were also other types of accommodation available within the centre grounds; Yuts, camping, eco-bothies and lochside cabins.

The bunkhouse was a modern affair which could accommodate twenty people in five rooms. The rooms were split either side of a central open plan area where the lounge and kitchen was located. Toilets and showers were available but there were additional ablutions in the centre’s main building. A TV, microwave, electric cooker and small fridge with a freezer compartment were provided but it was hard to see how potentially twenty people could function here. The centre has a café so it looks as though they would prefer it if people ate there. We booked a table on the Saturday evening to enjoy the Galloway Gourmet Burger Night.

Alan, Janet and Lindsay stopped off on the way down to climb Cairnsmore of Fleet arriving at the centre around 1730. Jim arrived shortly before with Vania arriving around 1000.

The next day’s plan was that Alan, Janet, Lindsay and Vania would climb Corserine but I opted to not climb due to an Achilles tendon problem. Instead I brought my mountain bike and planned to ride around the SE section of the Galloway Forest Park: this area was south of the A712 and west of Loch Ken. Our Burger Night sitting was time restricted so it was in everybody’s interest to get back in time!

A beautiful morning set us off. Alan’s group route was from the Forest Lodge parking area, skirting Loch Harrow to Summit Corserine then follow the ridge SSE (Rhinns of Kells) to Meikla Millyea then trek back through the forest to the Lodge car park. Lindsay had been thinking about her burger and timing all day so when a slight dispute arose about the choice of the route back she made the executive decision and all made it back in good time. I drove round to the west of Loch Ken to the car park at Mossdale and cycled a short
distance down the dismantled railway to the shore of Stroan Loch. Turning north I visited the Secret Cages of the Red Kite project and to the Bennan Hill view point before following the forest trails north running parallel to the west shore od Loch Ken. The route took me west at Cairn Edward then back south to the Raisers Road then east to the picnic area at the the otter pools. I opted to follow the Raiders Road to the Chatteringshaws Loch Dam Visitors Centre for a coffee and cake before my return south on the No:7 National Cycle Route to the Big Water of Fleet Viaduct. I crossed the viaduct and picked up the old
railway line to head back to Mossdale. Unfortunately the old line here was heavily overgrown in places but passable with caution. At one point I was up to my knees in swamp and had to manhandle the bike off the line but made it to a point where the trail surface was good and headed back to the van in good time for the burger dinner. All in all, 5½hrs riding and some 55km covered with two tics found the next day.

I had a bit of saddle soreness so I headed home on Sunday while Alan’s group opted to climb The Merrick. Somebody mentioned (no names) that this hill was close to Selkirk. Janet found a brochure and pointed out the geography of southern Scotland. I hope they all got home OK! There are other stories to tell about this weekend but will save them for another day, another meet.

Regards,
Jim Plaice

Aug 2017 Meet Report

A small gathering of 7 attended the meet. Janet, Alan, Lindsay and Jim met at the top car park and walked in to open the hut on Friday night. Much later they were joined by Katie, Jon and Sonal, who lost her bottle of Rum on the walk in (thankfully her Tia Maria made it!!)

Saturday
Jon wanted to climb Sgurr a Mhaim, his last Munro to bag in the area. So Jon, Katie and Sonal completed the ring of Steall – An Gearanach, Stob Coire a’Chairn, Am Bodach and Sgurr a’Mhaim – at usual speed only taking 8 hours. They encountered rain, hail, rainbows and a couple of ravens. The rest of the bunch headed for Sgurr Choinnich Beag and Sgurr Choinnich Mhor on the opposite side of the Glen. The day started with factor 30 being applied then waterproofs on, off, on and off again. Great views all round.

Sunday
Katie, Jon and Sonal ended up climbing Stob Ban. The ascent was fine, with views on the top, then it rained the whole way back to the car park. Janet, Lindsay, Alan and Jim opted for an easy day, but got a Dow adventure instead, looking for Samuel’s cave further down the glen. After a lot of scrambling around the cave was found and explored. A successful weekend and looking forward to Loch Ken in September!

June 2017 Meet Report

Fisherfield/Shenavall

Friday

Alan, Lindsay, Janet, Trish, Lawrie, and Dave arrived at Corrie Hallie as arranged 16:00. Before the 7ks walk in, a birthday was celebrated, Alan joined the “SEVENTIES CLUB ” a cake and wine to wash it down was produced plus cards and “presies” of a Tee Shirt with the Gaelic wording CUIR EASBSA ANN AM, and a Baseball cap to match, Alan was fare tickled PINK !!!! Translation: ask Alan the next time you see him.

We arrived at Shenavall in brilliant sunshine with views of the Fisherfield hills in all their glory

Saturday

Lawrie, Janet and Iain ( who arrived in the small hours on Saturday) had an early start (5ish) their mission was the “Big Six” – Beinn a’ Chaidheimh, Sgurr Ban, Mullach Coire Mhic Fhearchair, Beinn Tarsuinn, A’ Mhaighdean and Rhuadh Stuc Mor. Alan, Lindsay, Trish and Dave left sometime later – their mission was the 2 Corbetts Beinn Dearg Mor and Beinn Dearg Beag.

The days forecast was pretty spot on, bright sunny spells with heavy rain / hail, thunder and lightening, amazing the groups got back dry.

Sunday

After a late start and leisurely breakfast, the group broke camp and walked out to Corrie Hallie by the longer route via Achneigie.

A most appreciated cup of tea/coffee was served to the stragglers by Lawrie who with Lindsay were the first back getting the kettle on. “Brilliant”

Another memorable weekend. “MISSIONS ACCOMPLISHED”

April 2017 Meet

The venue for the April meet was the Jacobites’ hut at Invercroft, Achnasheen, attended by Alan, Colin, Dave (Sat only), Iain, Janet, Jim, Ken, Lawrie, Lindsay, Stewart and Vania. Despite a Jacobite-warning of wellies being required to access the hut, all arrived dry-footed courtesy of a raised wooden walkway across Loch Gowan.

Friday evening saw the early birds opening up, lighting the fire, and a few made their way to the Ledgowan Lodge to work on an invite to Saturday night’s dance (finding later that walking legs and dancing legs don’t mix). When most of the group were catching up in front of the fire, two unexpected guests appeared at the door asking……’is this the Ling Hut?’ After advising them in the nicest possible way that their navigation skills had gone awry, they were last seen heading into the night, hopefully in the direction of their friends at the Ling.

Saturday turned out to be a good day weather-wise. Stewart was first out heading to Sgorr Ruadh and Beinn Liath Mhor; closely followed by Iain in the direction of Slioch. Colin had Moruisg as his target for the day; and Ken (practicing solo walking for a big day coming soon) made his way from Achnashellach via Glenuig Lodge and Scardroy back to Invercroft. The big group of six – Alan, Janet, Jim, Lawrie, Lindsay and Vania – parked at Coulags walked up by Fionn-abhainn for a tea-break at the bothy. They then disappeared in three different directions to An Ruadh Stac, Maol Chean Dearg and Meall nan Ceapairean, managing to regroup in time for a second bothy stop. Saturday night, as usual, saw group members sharing their day’s experience, Iain having declared sight of one golden eagle, only to be trumped by Dave, newly-arrived from an expedition up Strath Rushden, claiming sight of two on his day in the hills.

With Sunday’s weather not looking too promising, Colin, Iain, Jim and Stewart headed for home, while Dave and Ken were last seen still deciding what to do next. Alan, Janet, Lawrie, Lindsay and Vania made a half-hearted attempt to reach Fuar Tholl (or to look at in anyway) with skies darkening at each step. The path up the glen has been adopted by the local walking group and members were out digging ditches (for anyone looking for a new project 😀). By 1pm all had turned back, the final few managing to get a soaking before the car park. Refuge was taken at the Ledgowan, joined by the ditch-diggers, before heading for home.

All in all an enjoyable weekend only partially spoiled by the weather.

March 2017 Meet

The March meet was held at the Lagangarbh hut in Glencoe with allocated bed spaces for 14 persons. This is a popular venue which attracted 16 people wishing to attend. Although we had a couple of withdrawals for overnight accommodation the club broke even by filling the full 14 slots.

One of those attending the meet was Sieglinde Bucher, a guest from a ramblers group. Jim met her at Stirling railway station and travelled up to Glencoe in the camper van. On approaching the hut, Jim noticed what appeared to be, two shady characters that seemed to be casing the joint but these turned out to be Rhona and Maggi who had arrived 10 or minutes before. After introductions, it was hugs and belated New Year kisses all-round. The weather on Friday was good but it deteriorated overnight resulting in a miserable Saturday morning which had an impact on individuals climbing plans.

Rhona and Maggi climbed the Devils Staircase to Kinlochleven and met up with a few others at the Ice Climbing Centre café in the afternoon. We were not sure how many slices of cake had been consumed but when one hears the comment, ‘I shouldn’t have that last piece’, one must draw one’s own conclusion.

Colin was going to Ballahulish and would drive the girls back. Neil and Sandra tackled the main street of Fort William for a bit of retail therapy.

Ken walked to Kinlochleven, via the devils Staircase but also visiting the Black Water Reservoir graveyard for the workers who lost their lives during the constructing the dam. (The hydroelectric scheme was constructed in the early 1900s. The dam was built using hand tools, without the benefit of mechanical earth moving machinery, and has been
described as the last major creation of the traditional ‘navvy’ whose activities in the construction of canals and railways left an indelible mark on the British countryside. (Wikipedia)).

Phil climbed the Graham, Beinn na Guraig, from Inchree and was rewarded with good views in the afternoon. Sieglinde was happy to do a low level walk and teamed up with Jojo to walk the Lairig Gartain and Lairag Eilde round the Buachaille Etive Beag.

Alan, Dave, Lindsay, Lawrie, (arr. Saturday morning) and Jim set off for Kinlochleven to climb Glas Bheinn but access across a weir at the west end of Loch Eilde Mor was under construction for a new water pipe line and therefore impassable. A crossing point was found further downstream but too late by then to tackle the hill. Photographs of the construction and ground disturbance are posted on the group website.

Scot arrived late Saturday evening but was bright eyed and bushy ready tailed for a Sunday climb. Sunday weather was very good so some groups decided to go for a tick.

Alan’s group climbed Beinna Chrulaiste and was rewarded with magnificent views of Stob Dearg and north up Glencoe and surrounding area but the icing on the cake were the two para-gliders presumably launching themselves off Stob Dearg. It was intended to come off the hill via the Kings House Hotel but a small issue about keys for the vehicle to be used for
the return cropped up!

Jojo and Sigi planned to tackle Sron Gharbh and if time permitted Am Bodach. Sigi was planning her return to Glasgow via Crianlarich railway station.

Ken planned to move to Inbhirfhaolain via Lairig Gartain then onto Cadderlie Bothy

Feb 2017 Meet

Despite a less-than-perfect weather forecast for the weekend, some twelve souls made it to the ‘Àite Cruinnichidh’ backpackers hostel near Roybridge. After the usual uming-and-ahing on a dreich morning, we set off in three groups.

Jim Plaice, Janet Sinclair, Alison Todd and Lawrie Wilson set off eastwards with the intention to do a round of Beinn a’ Chaorainn and Beinn Teallach. Due to the inclement weather conditions they did just the first top. Jim Plaice put a few photos on the Yahoo group website, including one of the snowman they built (or is it a “snowperson” :)).

Dave Duncan, Vania Kennedy, Alan Dow, Sandra and Neil Cameron headed south up Lairig Leacach aiming for Cruach Innse and Sgurr Innse. Again, wind and weather cut those plans short with just one top completed.

Scott Moncur, Phil Blackwood and Jojo Neff drove up the road to Glen Loy for a low-level walk up towards Glen Sulaig bothy. The bothy was in a good condition and we stopped there for an early lunch. Scott and Phil then headed back down the glen whilst I went up the way to Druim Fada. At this time, it started snowing in big fat flakes and it turned more wintery as I ascended. My compass took me along the ridge heading eastwards and down the other side through recently cut woods to Corpach. Once below the clouds the snow stopped and there were some clear views across the water to the base of Ben Nevis. By bus
and train I returned to Roybridge and from there on foot to the hostel. Dinner was followed by the usual knees-up in the comfy dining kitchen at the hostel.

The forecast was somewhat better for Sunday with higher clouds, less wind and precipitation. I can’t recall all activities for this day but a few folk went home. Janet and Jim (I think) returned to complete yesterday’s mission of climbing Beinn Teallach. Dave, Vania and Alan went for one of the Carn Deargs in Glen Roy. Phil and Jojo went further up Glen Roy to climb two other Carn Deargs and Glas Bheinn before visiting Luib-chonnal bothy. A very spacious and well equipped place, including wood burning stove and a ready supply of wood.

Glen Roy with its many Carn Deargs made me wonder whether it is time to draw up another tick list of “The Deargs” for those running out of Munros, Corbetts, Grahams, Marilyns and molehills. I would include all tops of that name regardless of height. Any volunteers ?

Christmas meet report

The CDMC meet to Woodlands House, Kingussie, went very well with great attendance, accommodation, food and weather.

28 people rocked up over the weekend and many hills were climbed. Apologies if I make some errors in matching hills and people in the following! Jon, Katie, Sonal, Jojo, Alison and Gintas climbed Sgor Gaoith and did yoga at the summit (photo attached shows the “Tree” position). Colin, Sue, Iain, Innes and Vania (I think) went up the corbett at the back of Kingussie (Carn an Fhreiceadain I think) (photo attached). Ken and Stewart Bryne also went up this corbett, I think. Dave, Alan, Janet, Sandra, Neil and Lawrie went up Carn Dearg Mhor. Colin Harris visited Aviemore library (west side). Michael the Drumochter hill path and Moira and Tony visited Loch Morlich.

We had a very tasty dinner on Saturday night (photo of gathering attached) and a carol singing session (Jon on ukulele, Katie on fiddle).

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On Sunday we enjoyed the leftovers for breakfast. Some folk went home, Scott went up the nearby corbett, myself, Jon, Sonal, Alison and Gintas had a great day on Geal Charn and I’m sure a lot of other people went up hills but I left without noting down the destinations – sorry.

There wasn’t much snow up high but we managed to find a few solid patches for practicing ice axe arrests on – whoopee.

Thanks to everyone who came and made this a great meet.

Katie

President
Carn Dearg Mountaineering Club