Glen Garry

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Section 10b
Sgurr a'Bhac Chaolais
885
Buidhe - bheinn 885
Beinn na h-Eaglaise 804
Beinn Loinne 790
Sgurr Mhic Bharraich 781
Beinn nan Caorach 773
Sgurr a'Choire-bheithe 913
Sgurr an Fhuarain
901
Sgurr nan Eugallt 894
Ben Aden
887
Fraoch Bheinn
858
Sgurr Cos na Breachd-laoidh
835
Sgurr Coire Choinnichean
796
Beinn na Caillich
785
Ben Tee
901
Sgurr Mhurlagain
880
Meall na h-Eilde 838
Geal Charn 804
Meall Dubh 788
Streap 909
Bidein a'Chabair 867
Carn Mor 829
Sgurr an Utha 796
Beinn Bhan
796
Meall a'Phubuill 774
Braigh nan Uamhachan 765


Section 4
Section 9
Section 10a
Section 11


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 Arkaig
Looking northward across Loch Arkaig, and up the Allt Dubh. Geal Charn just visible, left background. The big hill is Glas Bheinn (732m)

Meall na-h-Eilde 838m * Hind's Hill  Map
Geal Charn 804m 2636'  Another one!, White Hill.  Map

*Meall na Eilde: Replaced Meall Coire nan Saobhaidh(2695') with the new maps in 1981


Geal Charn 804m

Eas Chi-aig as normally seen.Eas Chi-aig

You have probably been this way many a time. Returning from a good trip to Skye or Kintail, heater still on, a fugg born of the Cluanie Curtain and Gore-tex, filling the car that is toiling up above Loch Loyne. Then the top of the brae and as usual you stop for that view. Sgurr na Ciche, Gairich, Loch Garry, Ben Tee and the white topped lumps above Loch Lochy. You may even notice the hills that are dead opposite, but then you would be unusual. Welcome to another 'lost corner'.

Meall na Teanga and Sron a'Choire Ghairbh get noticed, a bold frontage above the Great Glen, the Rough Bounds… No contest. But what of in between? You will not notice anything heading for the end of Loch Arkaig, eyes forward trying to anticipate which way the road will leap after the next bump. The above view of lumps above an endless moor beyond the Garry Forests may not inspire, but there

The compact group of rounded tops is well defined. Two massive glen systems, north and south, a deep through glen forming the eastern march. Only to the west they decline gracefully, Meall Blair , moors before the Corbett plot resumes on Sgurr Mhurlagain.

These hills may not inspire merely as hills, but reward the backpacker. Whether heading East-West on a coast to coast trip or as an early part of the increasingly popular trek to Cape Wrath, they provide a good days progress, away from roads and with a good feeling of remoteness, numerous pony paths make light going of the heather.

The comings and goings of the tables have led to some changes up there, Meall na h-Eilde has replaced Meall Coire nan Saobhaidh, thus messing up the quickie backpacking option. The finest top Meall an Tagraidh stubbornly stays out of the tables due to being slightly too wee and slightly too small a drop. One of the the great unlisted.

As suggested I took these hills as a traverse with minimal overnight gear. Hoping for a day raid on Sgurr Mhurlagain, once again I had failed to get a lift beyond the scenic falls of Eas Cia-aig and elected to spend the night nearby. The quickly rearranged plan called for a traverse of the moors, taking in the Corbetts, looking for a doss in Glen Garry prior to a trip up Ben Tee.

A typical grotty October day saw me following a widened and very wet path up the Allt Dubh. Easy going led to a straight forward ascent up the Southeast ridge of Geal Charn. The usual no view, which was a pity as the westward view must be a fine one.

Meall na-h-Eilde 838m 

Now that the Corbetts have been switched, Meall Coire nan Saobhaidh becomes an obstacle rather than a goal. Such inbetween hills are not always bad news: 1) you get a bonus top and 2) a long high ridge can give better going than some gloopy heatherhell below. The hill gave an easy mile, not much height lost, before a steep swing southward to the flattened dome of the new Corbett. I vaguely remember a line of ruined fence poles. I have firmer memories of a misty stony waste, well populated by Ptarmigan.

I should of course gone on to Tagraidh, but I was wet enough, and the path off Saobhaidh was too tempting. Besides I had burnt my boats, my pack was back at Meall Coire nan Saobhaidh's summit cairn.

Meall an Tagraidh is not only the most shapely summit, but is also another Charles Edward Stewart doss. He spen the night up here when returning to Locheil country from Glen Affric. The House below, Fedden, now ruined, is another of those march houses. The burn was capable of diversion either side of the house. When Glengarry's factor came for the rent, the house would be on Locheil's estate. Likewise the burn would be moved to put the house beyond the reach of Locheils rent collectors. Another example was McRae's at Pait on Loch Monar. (Now below the raised loch.)

Paths on OS maps: You just don't know do you. Is it there or not and how well built? This one turned out to be overgrown by the heather, but still easily followed. I was lucky, descending from Saobhaidh in the mist I was able to pick up the end of the path, one place where a cairn is always welcome(if only for the pony boy to shelter behind). The big advantage of the path was the promise of easy progress through the plantations between the hill and Greenfield , a B&B. This was an easy descent but Greenfield had packed in for the winter, once again I had to walk out to Invergarry.

The old Road to the Isles is still a pleasant trip and there was always hope for a lift, which finaly arrived half a mile short of the main road. A night in Invergarry and the following day was to be a drubbing on Tee.

The best circuit for these hills is to use Gleann Chi-aig and the good path up to the ruin of Fedden. There is ample parking at the falls, which have given me my only roadside winter climb (Grade II, 1 minute walk in, but when will it ever be in nick again?). I have used this route to get to Glas Bheinn , which you may want to throw in to the round. The return is the easy descent of Geal Charn to the Argo track in the Allt Dubh. One for a dark day?

Whilst on 'dark days', the hills here were once subject to a strange threat. Back in the 1980's when we were being groomed for possible nuking, it was decided that a new way was required to communicate with submarines. The plan was to use the physical properties of a large lump of granite to generate Extra Low Frequency radio. This was the chosen location, as the hill area between Garry and Arkaig is largely state owned and has the correct geology. Miles of cables and roads were to be constructed all over the hills. No doubt nasty subversive hill bashers would never have been allowed near the place. Fortunatelly history moved on, the world was not blown up in the name of 'Freedom' or 'international socialist brotherhood' and like the Knoydart ranges this never happened. There never was a Fedden Peace Camp.


Eas Chi-aig in a rare cold snap.Grade II ice, 1 minute walk in.

 

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Edition A* 19/12/00