Crogearraidh na Thobh (Crogary na Hoe)
Maireabhal (Marrival)
Beinn Mhor
Crogearraidh Mor (Crogary Mor)
Date: Sunday 15th August 2010
Company: Myself and Beinn
Time: Sub one-hour each

The weather forecast today was for sunshine. Unfortunately, the forecast proved incorrect. I set off from Lochmaddy around 6.30am to ascend my first hill on North Uist. Cloud was down to around 150m. I therefore decided to head for the lowest hill first. Crogary Na Hoe must be one of the lowest Marilyns at only 154m high. I drove to the end of the road at NF971731 where there is parking for a couple of cars. The view from the start of the walk, towards numerous islands, was nice.

View from start of walk:

View from start of walk:

I passed through the gate at the start of the walk and immediately started my ascent, between two lines of fenceposts.

Looking towards South Harris from Crogary na Hoe:

The ascent was quite wet underfoot. As I ascended towards the low cloud, I could see that it looked a nice day on Skye.

A nice day on Skye?

Ascending Crogary na Hoe:

Looking back towards start:

Lots of islands:

We reached the summit trig point on Crogary na Hoe after only 28 minutes of walking.

Beinn at summit of Crogary na Hoe:

We returned to the car via the same route.

Sunny spotlights between North Uist and Skye:

I then drove to the starting point of Marrival, at the small car park on Committee Road. I ascended via the area of cut peat. The going was seriously wet underfoot – wasn't long before my boots were full of water.

Cut peat at start of ascent of Marrival:

I ascended towards Beinn Amhlasaraigh.

Small wood on flanks of Marrival (zoomed):

On reaching Beinn Amhlasaraigh, I crossed an area of very wet peat hags en-route to Marrival.

Lots of peat hags:

By the time I reached the summit I was soaked, as was Beinn. Marrival was my 100th new Marilyn ascended thus far in 2010.

Beinn at summit of Marrival:

Wet dog:

I returned to the car via a more direct route, passing alongside the edge of the wood, via a faint path. I then returned to Lochmaddy for a change of clothes, and to stuff my boots with newspaper, before heading back out for more hills and a visit to Berneray. I parked in a passing place for the ascent of Beinn Mhor and set off initially towards Beinn Bhreac.

Looking towards Beinn Bhreac:

During the walk-in I reached a barbed-wire fence with no gate. The base of the fence was pretty-close to the ground but Beinn somehow managed to squeeze under it.

Beinn Mhor:

The ascent again was disappointingly undertaken in low cloud.

Beinn at summit of Beinn Mhor:

From the summit, I returned to the car via the same route. During the descent the cloud lifted enough to catch a glimpse of the views I was missing out on.

Lots of islands to East of Beinn Mhor (Vatersay, Sursay, Stromay, Tahay, Vaccasay, etc.):

More islands to East of Beinn Mhor:

My partner and Becky had waited in the car for me while I ascended Beinn Mhor. After I got back from Beinn Mhor we headed for Berneray to find a beach for Becky. I drove as far as the road end to the North of Berneray, where we found a nice beach.

Beinn on beach at North of Berneray:

The beach had a large black-backed gull on it as well as numerous Sandpipers. I suppose I should mention that during the past few hours I had already seen Red Kites, Mute Swans, Greylag Geese, Hooded Crows, Ravens, Heron, an Owl (flying passed car at 2.00pm!) and an Eagle. North Uist is an incredible place for wildlife.

Black-backed gull and sandpipers on beach on Berneray:

Building sandcastles:

On our return from the beach we stopped to look at the seals on the coast of Berneray. While standing on the shore I saw something move and thought 'was that an otter'? On getting a closer look I was disappointed and quite surprised to find it was actually two large rats.

Seals on Berneray:

On the way back to Lochmaddy, the weather was starting to improve. I therefore stopped beside the quarry to also ascend Crogary Mor.

Looking back to car at start of ascent of Crogary Mor:

The ascent of Crogary Mor was quite pleasant. Still wet underfoot but nowhere near as wet as Marrival.

Approaching summit of Crogary Mor:

Was nice to get my first views of the Lees and Eaval, hills I hope to ascend later this week.

North and South Lee:

Burrival and Eaval:

Beinn Mhor from Crogary Mor:

The final 20m or so to the summit was quite steep.

Steep ascent to summit (heather in bloom):

Beinn at summit of Crogary Mor:

Looking North from summit of Crogary Mor:

North and South Lee and Eaval from summit of Crogary Mor:

I returned to the car via the same route before returning to Lochmaddy. Despite the low cloud, and associated lack of views, today was still an enjoyable day with four new Marilyns bagged.