Hills: An Teallach [Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill and Sgurr Fiona]
Date: Saturday 26th October 2013
Company: Myself, Brent, Derrick, John, Heavy, Davey, Ian, Coran and Ali
Distance: 16.6km, Ascent: 1490m
Time: 8Hrs 5Mins

I set off from home at 04.00 yesterday morning to accompany Brent and friends on an ascent of An Teallach. All going well, Sgurr Fiona would be Brent’s final Munro.

The drive to Dundonnell was fairly pleasant as far as Black Bridge. Beyond Black Bridge I had to slow right down as there were a large number of deer at the roadside. I arrived at the Smiddy around 07.30 and we set off walking at 07.45.

Click here to see a map of the route undertaken

It was great to walk today in such experienced company – almost all ex-RAF mountain rescue. We started our ascent up behind the house a short distance along the A832 from the Smiddy. We then followed the track marked on the map for circa 800m before following another track leading up into Coir a’Mhuillin.

Looking back towards Little Loch Broom, Beinn nam Ban with Ben More Coigach in distance:

The weather was much better than forecast. During the ascent the visibility was excellent. We got great views across to the Beinn Dearg hills, the Fannichs and the Coigach and Assynt hills. Even Morven was clearly visible in the distance.

Looking back towards Beinn Dearg hills:

There was lots of good banter throughout the day including Heavy getting some stick for taking an iPad up the hills. It did however seem to work very well as a camera.

Heavy is a very experienced mountaineer with 30 years spent in RAF Mountain Rescue. Heavy has completed an amazing seven rounds of Munros, three rounds of Munro Tops as well as having undertaken numerous Alpine trips and Himalayan expeditions. He is also a great guy!


During the ascent, Heavy pointed out some winter routes on the side of Glas Mheall Mor.

Ali ascending Coir a’Mhuillin:

Coir a’Mhuillin:

The track up Coir a’Mhuillin was fairly rough with lots of stones and boulders.

Looking back:

Derrick, Heavy, Brent and Ian:

Looking back:

A short distance from the top of the coire, I took a small diversion from the group to ascend the Munro Top, Glas Mheall Mor.

Ascending Glas Mheall Mor:

View towards Coigach and Assynt from Glas Mheall Mor:

The ascent of Glas Mheall Mor was straight-forward albeit it was very windy up top. Surprisingly it was significantly more windy on Glas Mheall Mor than on the higher Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill.

Ascending Glas Mheall Mor:

View of Little Loch Broom and Beinn Ghobhlach:

The Fannichs from the summit of Glas Mheall Mor:

From the summit of Glas Mheall Mor, I returned along the ridge and then over a subsidiary top to reach a small bealach. I could see the group ahead at the small bealach.

Looking towards Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill:

During the ascent of Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill I managed to catch-up with the group. We followed a good path ascending diagonally up the side of Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill rather than ascending the steep ridge directly.

Ascent of Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill:

I last ascended An Teallach in September 2005 on a day of strong wind and low cloud. On this ascent it was great to actually see An Teallach and to soak in the views.

At the summit of Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill:

While I was half-tempted to head out to the Munro Top, Glas Mheall Liath, I decided to leave it for another less-windy future trip.

Ridge out to Glas Mheall Liath:

Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill was Brent’s penultimate Munro. One to go – Sgurr Fiona.

John, Brent and Derrick at the summit of Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill:

Sgurr Fiona and Sgurr Creag an Eich:

Loch Toll an Lochain:

An Teallach is a fantastic mountain that deserves respect - the Corrag Bhuidhe pinnacles look really impressive. Hopefully my third ascent of An Teallach will be in less windy weather to allow a traverse of the pinnacles. I think it would be a bit mad to attempt them in strong winds.

During the descent to the col, between Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill and Sgurr Fiona, I took several photos of the ridge.

An Teallach ridge above Loch Toll an Lochain:

An Teallach ridge from Sail Liath to Sgurr Creag an Eich:

An Teallach ridge from Sail Liath to Sgurr Fiona:

An Teallach ridge above Loch Toll an Lochain:

A short distance above the col, most of the group stopped to pose atop a couple of small pinnacles. Standing on these pinnacles with An Teallach in the background provides a great photo opportunity!

Myself atop a small pinnacle:

Myself atop a small pinnacle:

Ian atop the small pinnacle:

Corrag Bhuidhe and Lord Berkeley’s Seat (zoom):

The ascent of Sgurr Fiona was mostly straight-forward - a little bit trickier than Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill but not technically difficult. During the ascent we got great views across to the fantastic Beinn Dearg Mor and Bheag and to the Fisherfield Six (Five Munros and One Corbett).

Beinn Dearg Mor and Beinn Dearg Bheag across Loch na Sealga:

Ascending Sgurr Fiona:

On reaching the summit of Sgurr Fiona I took a number of photographs.

Assynt (zoom):

Fisherfield “Six” and Beinn Dearg Mor:

Fisherfield “Six” and Beinn Dearg Mor and Bheag:

Abhainn Gleann na Muice:

Ridge from Sgurr Fiona summit out to Corrag Bhuidhe:

It was great to see Brent reach the summit and to congratulate him on the significant achievement of completing the Munros.

Well done Brent .

Brent completing the Munros at the summit of Sgurr Fiona:

The summit of Sgurr Fiona is fairly small and it was more than a bit breezy up there so there was no opportunity for a summit group photo. We spent around five minutes at the summit before heading down out of the wind.

During the descent, instead of stopping for lunch, I decided to head out to the Munro Top, Sgurr Creag an Eich. It took a bit longer to get out to and back from Sgurr Creag an Eich than anticipated.

Sgurr Creag an Eich:

The ridge leading out to Sgurr Creag an Eich is nice. You can either stick to the top of the ridge or take a path just below the ridge-line on the Loch na Sealga side. I opted for a combination of both.

On the ridge out to Sgurr Creag an Eich:

View from the summit of Sgurr Creag an Eich:

An Teallach ridges from Sgurr Creag an Eich:

Fisherfield hills from Sgurr Creag an Eich:

I could see the group a fair bit ahead as I returned along the ridge. I had to re-ascend circa 50m of Sgurr Fiona before skirting round to the col between Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill and Sgurr Fiona.

Returning to the col between Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill and Sgurr Fiona:

Despite stepping-up a gear I was unable to catch-up with the group by the time the group had reached the summit of Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill. I did however manage to catch-up before reaching the top of Coir a’Mhuillin.

It was nice to walk in the company, apologies for heading off on my own to bag a couple of tops!

Looking back:

View from Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill:

During the re-ascent of Bidein a’Ghlas Thuill, I spotted a Golden Eagle in the distance above Sail Liath. It was however too far away to get a decent photograph. During the descent of Coir a’Mhuillin, Derrick spotted four hinds a short distance below us.

A hind in Coir a Mhuillin:

Descent back to Dundonnell:

Thanks to Brent and friends for a great day out. I am already looking forward to re-visiting An Teallach.