Five Word Weather: Too sunny? Is that possible?
The sun was shining as we prepared to climb the last of the Munros on Skye. Jamie’s day was highlighted by the fact that she was able to wear not only her purple Oakleys, but purple shorts, too.
Purple shorts AND purple Oakleys = good day!
Summit of Bla Bheinn
Views to the Black Cuillin
More Cuillin Views
Jamie racing down the scree
Descent down to the main trail of Bla Bheinn
It was bound to be a good day!!
Today was hot, hot, hot (by Scotland standards) but at least the start of Bla Bheinn’s approach was via a quick flowing stream. We regularly stopped for cool down splashes and for Jamie to saturate her hat, in awe of how quickly it would dry out. Unprecedented!
The scree on Bla Bheinn was much less tricky than expected and we followed the rocky track to the summit, which offered amazing views across to the Black Cuillin – only 12 hours previously we were climbing it!
To save a bit of time and to add a unique addition to our journey we opted to take the ferry from Kylerhea on Skye to Glenelg on the mainland. As the brochures claim, this is certainly a lovely and scenic way to get to the mainland, not to mention the traditional route before the bridge existed!
The ferry on arrival
Our wing mirror on the tightly packed ferry
We parked up at Arnisdale, where Jamie needed an extra 15 minutes to work up the motivation to get going. Andy looked out onto Knoydart while preparing to start, simultaneously reminding Jamie that it was a VERY long drive to come back here to do this solo Munro in future if she didn’t get her booty in gear soon!
Andy, with Knoydart across the sea
At the start
The lovely part of the ascent
The false summit – big meany!
The first 600m or so of ascent were quite nice, marred only by the vicious, indestructible clegs. Just when you thought that surely this one was smooshed to smithereens, it would bounce off of something and come back to bite with a vengeance.
Just when we were feeling bad that none of our mates came to join us, the kind trail deceived us and went from a steady climb to a beastly, steep, crumbly “path” of yuck. We were practically crawling as Jamie began to ponder what life would be like remaining permanently at the top of Ben Sgritheall as it was clear that there was no chance on Earth that she was going to be capable of descending what we were ascending.
Approaching the real summit
Looking back to Knoydart
Amazing views to Skye
Summit of Ben Sgritheall
Kicking the old trig point
And just when it seemed that it was over, the first massive cairn seen was a faker! A bit of descent and some further ascending (this time of a much more reasonable variety!) finally led to the actual summit, brining stunning views of Knoydart and Skye. Worth the crawling ascent? Indeed, but only because by that point we had worked out an alternative descent route! We chilled on the top with snacks for about a half hour before the reality of a 4+ hour drive home prodded us into movement.
Jamie so shocked to see so much sunshine her head actually exploded!
Descending back toward the saddle toward a herd of deer and contouring round, the effects of the previous day solidly set into Jamie’s knees and it took ages for her to get back to the car. Luckily, Andy had made it back faster – swatting clegs every step of the way – and supernoodles and hot chocolate awaited.
The culmination of an awesome weekend . . . Jamie in a near coma in the car while Andy got us home safely to start yet another work of week in Glasgow!
Midway through the descent
Sunset at start of drive home
*While Lorraine didn’t join us for any of the hills this weekend she gets bonus points for maintaining a cheery attitude even after an infected cleg bite led her to have a cankle, a pulsating leg, and a hospital visit!We shudder to think about what that thing had bitten before her leg!