A' Chailleach and Sgur Breac - 2 western Fannichs

A' Chailleach means the old woman in Gaelic, and Sgur Breac is the speckled (pointy) peak.


Length: 12.3 miles19.7 km Ascent: +1139m -1139m
Start: 2018-05-16 09:11:25 BST End: 2018-05-16 18:38:19 BST
Elapsed Time: 9h 26m 54s Ave. Speed: 1.30mph 2.09kph
Moving Time: 7h 17m 57s Ave. Speed: 1.68mph 2.70kph

It was early, 5:40am. I was awake and Jessie wanted to go out so it was time to get up and get doing. I was out the door a little after 7am, and had filled up Florence at Tesco by 7:40am. Not bad timing I thought. Traffic was light although getting held up by slow trucks is par for the course at any time of day. at Loch Glascarnoch it started raining which was most definately not in any of the weather forecasts! Parking up there were three cars beside the road, as I got out to check I was parked okay 3 more cars turned up. Now it was getting busy, if I'd been that two minutes later I would have struggled to get a spot for the van.

The nose of Sron na Leitir Fhearna
The nose of Sron na Leitir Fhearna

Trees cling to the crags on Leitir Fhearna
Trees cling to the crags on Leitir Fhearna

Following the track and new path through the woods to the bridge over the outfall of Loch a' Bhraoin you cannot miss the steep nose of Sron na Leitir Fhearna, knowing that is the route onto the ridge leading to Toman Coinich. It looked intimidating. However, on it's lower slopes a clear and unmistakable path starts winding it's way ever higher. Follow it zigzagging through the crags gaining height rapidly and you'll find no difficulties at all. A superb mountain path that I really, really enjoyed.

An Teallach from Druim Reidh
An Teallach from Druim Reidh

The ridge of Druim Reidh to Toman Coinich
The ridge of Druim Reidh to Toman Coinich

I followed an easy path ascending Druim Reigh, which soon turned into a track. This kind of headed to Bealach Toll an Lochain, which as I came closer was not what I wanted. Large patches of steep snow effectively barred the way to the col, which did not look straightforward at the best of times. I made my way onto the crest of the ridge and climbed all the way to Toman Coinich. I'd have to drop down to the bealach loosing my precious height. It wasn't too bad. Most of the ground was grass with some scattered rocks. I quickly made progress onto the first munro A' Chaileach.

A' Chailleach from Toman Coinich
A' Chailleach from Toman Coinich

A' Chailleach summit
A' Chailleach summit

The view from A' Chailleach was brilliant. Hills in every direction.

The Fisherfield munros
The Fisherfield munros

Toman Coinich, Sgur Breac and Sgurr nan Clach Geala
Toman Coinich, Sgur Breac and Sgurr nan Clach Geala

I now had to return back over Toman Coinich to get to Sgur Breac with two cols to drop down to and cross before climbing up the other side. Ouch! It wasn't actually too bad, just a case of getting on with it.

Snow tunnels on A' Chailleach
Snow tunnels on A' Chailleach

Sgurr Breac summit occupied!
Sgurr Breac summit occupied!

A couple and their dog where at the summit of Sgur Breac and they let me take their photo. The dog is 13years old and was a very sweet lad. I'm not sure it was the official summit. Another cairn stood nearer the edge of the crags so I visited that too, which was just as well as that was marked with the spot height. As I left the summit area to for the south east ridge I met a group of teenagers and their guides coming up. They seemed mostly in good spirits. Occasionally steep, mostly grass, the ridge was prone to throwing in a bit of a scramble down some big steps. On the whole though it was quite enjoyable. At the bottom having marvelled at the slopes opposite, which are a way onto the 'middle' Fannichs, I turned left and headed north down the glen back to Florence.

Bog wood, a sad sight of better times
Bog wood, a sad sight of better times

Allt Breabaig
Allt Breabaig

Tags: munro, outdoor, scotland Written 16/05/18 

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