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Report on South Glenshiel Wild Camp
27 June 2009   (4284 views)

The weather forecast looked good for the weekend so Elaina and I booked into the Trekker?s Lodge at the Kintail Hotel on Friday with a plan to do my first ever wild camp on the South Glenshiel ridge, a walk I'd done a few years ago with the club as a day trip. We travelled up on Friday night with the obligatory stop at the Real Food Cafe for a fish supper. Arrived at the hotel at about 10pm, in time for a couple of pints.

We could have taken the car up to the Cluanie Inn, but the thought of having to make our way back there on Sunday didn?t appeal so we decided to get the bus. ?6.20 each! For a 20 minute journey. And they wonder why folk don?t use public transport!

Anyway we got to the Cluanie Inn at 11am and set off on the long walk in. There was a fair amount of cloud which was a blessing as we plodded up the first Munro Creag a Mhaim from the south-east. However as we hit the ridge the cloud started to lift giving views of Ben Nevis, Knoydart, Rhum and Skye. We gradually made our way leisurely along the ridge with a plan to camp on the summit of the last one. However on reaching the 6th one, Sgurr an Lochain, at 8pm we both agreed that it was time to call it a day. We pitched on a fantastic spot just below the summit. Nice and flat and soft moss made for a good night?s sleep only broken by the odd gust of wind. The only other problem were the midges which really shouldn?t have been so high up! So we ate our dinner on the summit where a breeze gave us some protection from them.

Sunday morning saw mist bubbling up from the glens and we were on our way by 9am to complete the ridge by ascending Creag nam Damh.

After descending to Bealach Duibh Leac a fairly good path took us down to the road and now the only problem was getting back to the car at the Kintail Hotel. After about 20 minutes of trying to hitch a lift we saw a couple of lads coming off the hill after doing the Saddle. We asked hopefully if they were going back to Shiel Bridge, but no, they were Glasgow bound. However after getting changed they came across and offered us a lift back which was very much appreciated!

As a first camp it was absolutely perfect, as those that know me will testify I don?t do wet car camping at the best of times and I really don?t see the point of wet wild camping! But I have to say there's no better way of doing the ridge.

Steve Morley

Looking back to the Cluanie Inn
Perfect pitch just below Sgurr an Lochain
Glenshiel Sunset
Early morning mist on Sgurr an Lochain

Photos: Steve Morley

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