Hills: Beinn Eich, Cruach an t-Sidhein and Doune Hill Date: Friday 18th July 2014
Company: Just myself
Distance: 14.6km, Ascent: 1105m
Time: 5Hrs 10Mins
It was great to get back onto the hills today after a break of in excess of one month (possibly my longest break from the hills in the past twelve years).
Yesterday evening I drove as far as Tyndrum and this morning continued on to Glen Luss for an ascent of several Grahams.
I parked just after the first bridge near Edentaggart where there is off-road parking for two cars. After the next bridge there is further parking for one car. There are a good number of further spaces circa 4km down the glen.
At the start of the walk I had a brief chat with two walkers who were about to undertake the same circuit as myself.
On reaching a signpost waymarking Glen Fruin and Beinn Eich, I crossed
the fence via a stile before making my way through a section of long grass towards a dry stane dyke with a further stile.
Beinn Eich from Edentaggart:
The ascent of Beinn Eich was fairly straight-forward albeit I felt less-fit than normal. One month away from the hills and two weeks of eating US-sized food portions was taking its toll!
Ascending the lower slopes of Beinn Eich:
Looking back to Edentaggart and beyond to Loch Lomond:
During the ascent, I left the ridgeline to avoid having to walk through an area
of long bracken.
The view back towards Loch Lomond and its small islands was nice. The sun was however in that direction so photos did not come out well.
Looking back towards Loch Lomond:
Ascending Beinn Eich:
Looking back to Loch Lomond:
Despite feeling fairly unfit, I reached the summit 1 Hour 20 Minutes after setting off. The other two walkers were still at least 200m below me.
At the summit of Beinn Eich:
The descent from Beinn Eich was also straight-forward. Instead of ascending Beinn Lochain to reach Cruach an t-Sidhein, I decided to skirt round the side of it.
Looking towards Cruach an t-Sidhein and Doune Hill during descent from Beinn Eich:
Cruach an t-Sidhein and Doune Hill:
Looking back to Beinn Eich:
Skirting Beinn Lochain to reach Cruach an t-Sidhein:
I found the ascent of Cruach an t-Sidhein fairly steep.
Cruach an t-Sidhein:
The Cobbler (zoom):
Looking back along Gleann na Caorainn:
I had a short break at the summit to take some photos and to have a good drink.
Loch Long from the summit of Cruach an t-Sidhein:
Doune Hill from the summit of Cruach an t-Sidhein:
Depot on Loch Long (zoom):
Looking towards Ardgarten (zoom):
During the initial ascent of Doune Hill I met the other two walkers who were
still making their way towards Cruach an t-Sidhein.
I initially visited the summit of Beinn Lochain before continuing on to Doune Hill.
Doune Hill from the summit of Beinn Lochain:
On reaching the summit of Doune Hill I was not convinced that the trig point was
in fact the summit. A small mound perhaps fifty metres away looked higher.
Looking towards the summit of Doune Hill:
Loch Lomond islands from summit of Doune Hill (zoom):
At the summit of Beinn Doune:
The descent from Beinn Doune was fairly steep in its mid section.
Descent from Beinn Doune to Glen Mollochan:
On reaching Glen Mollochan I followed faint tracks through wet ground towards the start of the track marked on the map.
Near the start of the track marked on the map, I met two groups of bullocks circa fifty metres apart. The cattle were initially content to look at me, then they all stood up
and started heading towards me. I had already taken a short detour uphill to avoid them however I was concerned that they still had potential to reach me. I therefore stuck my walking poles on top of my head
(like large antlers) and shouted angrily at them at the top of my voice. This thankfully stopped them in their tracks. I then moved as quickly as I could to get some distance between me and them.
A load of bullocks (one of two groups):
Having recently photographed numerous dragonflies in the US, it was nice to see one of our own species
during the final walk out