Am Faochagach

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You have climbed 94/282 munros.

Am Faochagach means the heathery place. Although these days it's probably best known for being one of the boggiest munros as the approach is across a mile of heathery boggy moorland at the westward end of Loch Glascarnoch. Thankfully after a dry spell of a good 4 to 6 weeks it was still pretty boggy but nothing like it's fearsome reputation.

Date started:02/09/21
Distance:8.9 miles
Ascent:720m
Descent:720m
Time taken:20520
Moving time:4:54
Average speed:1.82mph
Maximum speed:3.22mph

I arrived at the rough parking area near Torrandhu Bridge gone 8:30am and it looked pretty full. Cars blocked the track down to the Met Office weather station, cars on the verge, and a van on the grass near where I had parked previously on the grass at the wide entrance. There was however a very rough area to one side and in-front, so I carefully manoeuvred Gerty onto it. Checking I wasn't blocking anyone, or anything, I stepped out of the camper into the mist and a cloud of midges. "Uh oh!" I thought.

The wee beasties weren't too bad once I finally left the van. A slight breeze off the loch along with a good coating of Smidge on every bit of exposed skin seemed to keep them at bay. Less than 100m away from the road we found our first soggy bit of ground which required a careful prod with the walking poles and considered route choice. Not too bad, but I hoped there wouldn't be too much more of this.

The Abhainn a' Gharbhrain was low. I managed to find enough linked rocks to use as stepping stone and crossed with dry feet. Skye didn't fare so well as she slipped off the rocks a few times. Following the narrow single-file path across the moor was mostly dry although quite bouncy at times. Where it wasn't small streams had made the ground very boggy, a few were strange colours like bright orange, luckily Skye jumped those okay.

Climbing to the ridge of Drochaid a' Ghlas Tuill was a slog. The only redeeming feature was an occasional waterfall alongside the Allt na h-Uidhe. As we neared the top of the ridge we burst out of the mist into beautiful sunshine. Another inversion for us! Beinn Dearg with it's top above the mist looked awesome.

We trudged on up and over the 844m top, across a wee col, and then the final rocky slopes to the summit. Am Faochagach's summit cairn is quite the opposite of inspiring, but the distant views make up for it. Wasps and flies had taken up residence around the cairn so me and Skye moved well away before I even considered giving her, her food and some drink.

On the return I considered what this summit meant to me. I had been leaving it as my last. So had I recognised in some way that I doubt I'll complete all the munros. Hmmm. We'll have to see.

Loch Glascarnoch in the mist
Loch Glascarnoch in the mist

Waterfall on the way up Am Faochagach
Waterfall on the way up Am Faochagach

Beinn Dearg above the clouds
Beinn Dearg above the clouds

Sgurr Mor and the central Fannaichs
Sgurr Mor and the central Fannaichs

Sgurr Mor and the Fannaichs
Sgurr Mor and the Fannaichs

The way to Am Faochagach from Drochaid a' Ghlas Tuill
The way to Am Faochagach from Drochaid a' Ghlas Tuill

Skye feeling the heat
Skye feeling the heat

The Fannaichs and the Fisherfields
The Fannaichs and the Fisherfields

Beinn Dearg from Am Faochagach
Beinn Dearg from Am Faochagach

Am Faochagach summit cairn
Am Faochagach summit cairn

Layers of hills from Am Faochagach
Layers of hills from Am Faochagach

Loch Glascarnoch and the heathery moorland
Loch Glascarnoch and the heathery moorland

Tags: munro, outdoor, scotland Written 02/09/21 

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