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Home arrow News arrow Meet Reports arrow Scotland Spring Meet 2012 - Ullapool, NW Highlands

Scotland Spring Meet 2012 - Ullapool, NW Highlands

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Contributed by Ian Powditch   
Ian Powditch provides an interesting commentary on the club's hugely popular annnual spring meet in Scottish Highlands.

Sunday 3rd June my first day - high above Loch Assynt on Sail Gharbn at 809m, and my first Corbet  - what an introduction to The Highlands!

The day started early, our cars parked safely next to the main road overlooking the Quinag Range. By 9.30 we were on our way. A brief rain shower before lunch gave way to sunshine for the rest of the day. The easy 3km walk in led to a steep zig- zag climb with a rocky section leading to the trig point. With hardly a cloud in the sky the view was breath-taking.

Next stop was Sail Ghorm via a down climb then up again to 776m, along a plateau to 745m and down to Bealach a Chornaidh. Another climb led to Spidean Coinich at 764m, with views to the previous peaks as reminder of the day- but it was now time to return. A 2km rock strewn slope lead to a protective footpath and finally the car park. A tiring but brilliant day, and ready for next week’s mountains.

The walk in on Monday to Mealt a Chrasgaidh, (my first Munro 934m) was through a beautiful valley skirting Loch a Bhraoin and following paths by tributaries to the Loch. On reaching the summit visibility was poor. However, when the intermittent mist cleared the panoramic view at the Trig was spectacular.

Tuesday was a very hot day. We succeeded in summiting Cul Beag 769m the view across to Stac Pollaidh, the sea, and islands were worth the effort. The terrain was very dry and most of the boggy areas were walkable.   The weather for this time of year was remarkable, even at 11pm with the sun going down the temperature was around 20 degrees.

Wednesday was a rest day and three of us went to Handa Island an RSPB nature reserve. The island can only be reached by boat. A small semi rigid inflatable craft was used as it made landing on the beach much easier.  I counted fifteen bird breeds, ranging from Stellar Eida to Arctic Skua.

Thursday brought a change of plans, as the further we drove inland the worse the weather became, so we decided on a coastal path.  The village of Blughassary was the starting point for what we thought was a reasonable walk. However, for several miles the coastal path was cut into the cliff, with gullies and rocky areas to traverse.  This was much more difficult than we had anticipated and took a little longer than expected.

We had hoped to either cadge a lift at Achiltibuie or at the worst call a taxi for the return journey. Unfortunately neither was possible. After many text messages and phone calls arrangements were made at Ullapool for a car to pick us up. We continued walking for another hour and at Loch Raa the arrival of Steve in his Nissan Primera was indeed much appreciated. 

Our final day, Friday, and the weather had turned from glorious sunshine to mist, cloud and rain. Some of us took a stroll around Loch Broom and went into Ullapool for the afternoon.

As is our custom, for the end of Spring Week, we made arrangements for our evening meal to be at one of the local hostelries

Conclusion, I’m going to the Scotland Spring meet in 2013.

 

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