Hill: Carn Ban
Date: Saturday 5th April 2008
Time: 8hrs 30mins
Company: Me, Dave, Kev (and another Dave part of the way)
Weather: Changeable - Sunny spells to Blizzards
From Oykel Bridge we drove to Strath Mulzie as far as Corriemulzie Lodge and parked in the walker's car park there.
Beware the road has lots of pot holes.
We set off walking along the track, which runs alongside the Corriemulzie River, and before long started getting excellent views of Seana Bhraigh's "Matterhorn" Top, Creag an Duine.
Creag an Duine from Strath Mulzie:
On reaching the fork in the track at NH299927 we left the track and made for the bridge across the Corriemulzie River.
Not sure how structurally sound the bridge was but we managed to get across it safely.
I wouldn't like to jump up and down on it. The ascent would have been easier if we had continued on to Loch a' Choire Mhoir and ascended from there. However, given the river was in spate we didn't fancy getting wet feet crossing the unbridged River at NH293907.
Bridge over Corriemulzie River:
From the bridge we set off across several miles of bog and peat hags passing between Meall an Dhaimh Bhig and Meall an Dhaimh Mhoir, making for the base of the ridge of Carn Ban which leads to the 779m top.
Setting off towards Carn Ban after crossing the bridge:
Bog and hags to cross before reaching the base of the hill:
On reaching the base of the hill, one of the two Daves decided to call it a day as weather conditions were worsening. Kevin,
Dave and I began our ascent of the ridge leading to Carn Ban's 779m top.
Close-up of Creag an Duine:
Dave ascending 779m top:
Looking up the wide ridge:
Dave and Kevin approaching the 779m top in increasingly bad conditions:
On reaching the 779m top, it was a complete whiteout. We were aware there were significant cliffs around Toll Lochan and that it
would be safe if we stayed to the right of these cliffs.
As the whiteout conditions continued, I programmed in the summit of Carn Ban as a waypoint into my
Garmin12 GPS. This proved to be a good move as we reached the summit cairn directly, without having to search for it on the summit plateau.
Myself at summit of Carn Ban:
Dave and Kevin at summit of Carn Ban:
We didn't hang around at the summit for long as the wind was incredibly cold.
The forecast windchill of -25C appeared to be correct.
On the return, at the bealach between Carn Ban and the 779m top, we stopped to eat some food before re-ascending the 779m top.
View from bealach between Carn Ban and 779m top:
From the 779m top, we didn't stop until reaching the track at Loch a Choire Mhoir. We decided to chance getting wet feet on the way back rather than cross all the bog and peat hags again.
During the descent the weather improved and the sun came out.
Loch a' Choire Mhoir with Magoo's/Coire Mor bothy in distance:
Seana Bhraigh's Creag an Duine top:
We were glad to be back on the track. On crossing the unbridged river, we all got very wet feet and had to
subsequently take off our boots to pour out the water and wring out our socks.
I'm glad we crossed the bridge on the way up.
The walk out to Corriemulzie Lodge felt quite long and we were glad to reach the car.