Winter Wonderland – Taking it Easy   10 comments

After the exertions of the previous two days skiing and in a effort to be more sociable with the rest of the party we opted for a day walk this time. A chance for me to add another missing munro on my quest to take the longest elapsed time to complete the list. Meall Glas was our target plus possibly Sgiath Chuil if we had time (or could be bothered in my case)

It was yet another stunning blue sky day as we started the climb up the track from Auchessan. Ben More, our ski mountain from yesterday looming large



A nice contrast between the brown heathery lower slopes and the snowy summits. Sgiath Chuil in the distance


On  such gorgeous day with a large group, the pace is slow and stops are many. Sometimes idly chatting and stopping to admire the majesty of the surroundings is more important


We were soon above the snow line and the going was hard with the snow deep and largely soft. Who cares when the views are this good.




After another lengthy stop for food, brews and dialogue we pressed on towards the summit. There were a couple of pretty steep slopes to ascend requiring crampons and axes to be on standby but nothing too tricky





The final summit slopes suddenly felt tiring after 3 straight days in the mountains. Still, the views and the conditions always spur you on


It was pretty chilly on the top so we pressed on towards the lower top of Beinn Cheathaich with Sgiath Chuil still  a target. The walk across the summit was magnificent. The snow cover was complete and the surroundings fabulous. It was these images that gave the blogs posts their title. It was a Winter Wonderland. Mountain walking just does not get better than this





We paused on the summit so everyone could catch up. Again all shaking our heads in wonder at how amazing the weather was and how lucky we’d been this weekend





On the way down towards the Lairig a Churain between Meall Glas and Sgiath Chuil I suddenly felt extremely weary. I decided that very long and very steep climb of 1,000 feet back up to Sgiath Chuil was too much and along with TBF and THO decided an easy stroll back from the col was in order. We waved at the others as they set of for the summit and alas didn’t see them again as we left before they got back to the cars



There had been a gathering haze of cirrus cloud through the day (heralding the fact the weather was to break the next day). Whilst not quite as clear blue it added an even greater atmosphere as the sun began to go down. We stopped for another snack in the middle of this vast expanse of bog now completely filled with snow



It was a long walk down from the col with much deep snow and several deep gullies to cross. The low light and shadows were just breathtaking. We watched from time to time to see the progress of the others. The slope that MM had chosen looked especially steep (he confirmed later that it had him concerned from time to time




We were not back at the car till 6pm. We’d been out 8 hours and only climbed one summit and done around 6 miles. That’s what happens when you are forced to stop every few hundred yards, look at the view and share the experience with old friends. I didn’t get home till after 1am but it was worth very tired minute at work the next week. What a truly magnificent weekend. Wonder how long I’ll have to wait for the same combination of circumstances


10 responses to “Winter Wonderland – Taking it Easy

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  1. Oh right, that’s why we got back to the cars before you did! We were quite surprised, but we were back well before sunset. Great photos again. What a surprise to learn that MM chose a dodgy route! I’ve never trusted his judgement on that since that day he slithered down a sheet of ice from the top of Winter Corrie and then came back looking slightly sheepish/alarmed, saying perhaps we shouldn’t go that way, which had seemed perfectly self evident to me from the outset!


    • It was a lot further back from the col than I thought and the snow was deep. MM said “he didn’t want to stop” on the steep bit in case he fell back down. He caught us up before we made it to the car. The Winter Corrie experience was the same day he also tried to cross the river on a very unstable looking patch of ice. He’s not called “Mad” for nothing. Sensational day. Sensational weekend 🙂


  2. Quite splendid. You don’t get too many days like that. 6 miles? Quite enough.


    • A truly fantastic day Alan, I’m running out of superlatives after 3 reports of sunshine and snow. I might have overestimated the 6 miles, I added a few for purposes of morale and making it look more like a proper day out. Sadly I was surrounded by some seriously fit people who made me feel inadequate – well jealous at any rate 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Wonderful photos 🙂 And I agree with Alan, 6 miles is plenty.


  4. Nice set of photos. I like the Munros in that area, not technically hard but very open and spacious with great views of the surrounding peaks.


    Blue Sky Scotland
    • I used to be a bit down on these peaks in my younger days, seeing them as “inferior” the the more dramatic peaks in the north west. Since I’ve rediscovered them over the past few years with regular visits to the area I’ve quite rightly decided they are very fine peaks with like you say expansive views. On a day like this they were perfect to just enjoy the mountains and the conditions


  5. Looks like you had a beautiful day!


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