sgurr nan each se ridge scramble

Sun, Nov 16, 2014

Continuing with the very mild weather, I fell out of bed, had a nice coffee and a read through the outdoors mag then out the door and round towards Torrin for a day scrambling. And what a morning it was. Blaven was stupendous.

In fact it was such a beautiful morning I kept stopping to take pictures of that wonderful hill.

On the way though, just before Torrin I came round the corner to find a car blocking the single track road. It was just sitting there. A sure sign there’s a tourist inside, especially as there were a few stoating round Broadford. Was there a holiday on? Anyway, the car wasn’t for moving, so I opened my door and looked ahead of it to see a sheep standing in the middle of the road, to all intents and purposes staring the car down. Seeing my door open, not to mention the actual car, like, waiting behind them, they inched forward a foot or so and stopped again.

This time I could hear screaming coming from inside the car. Like panicked screaming. So I got out and saw the sheep was inching towards the stopped car. Then I noticed the guy in the passenger seat was filming it, while with every hoof step forward, the woman in the driver’s seat screamed her head off. Another step forward. Another blast of screaming.

By this time I’d had enough so I walked round the car and banged my hands together a few times and the sheep ran off into a field.

You get tourists doing weird and stupid things all the time. Usually they’re stopped in the road to take pictures, or wander around, or read a map, or piss at the side of the road, or even worse. They’re a real menace. Especially the ones who can’t use single track roads and dive into the passing place when it’s not on their side of the road but this took the biscuit. Are these city slickers so far removed from the environment that they’re petrified of a sheep?

Ach well, at least they know how to gently move a sheep on now.

I didn’t really have much of an idea what I’d do today, so I just wandered up the Blaven path and at the burn crossing said to myself:

‘you know what I’d like right now?’
‘nup, enlighten me’
‘a scramble!’

and with that I headed off right and up the long heathery ridge to the foot of the SE ridge of Sgurr nan Each.

Once at the rocks I took a direct line up the crest, taking easier lines past the overhangs and smoother parts as lots of it is basalt.

Really nice scrambling all the way and a nice warm up for the harder section past the summit.

The views behind over to Knoydart were gorgeous as I boiled in the mild air and lack of wind.

Once on the first top it was a nice wander along the grassy ridge towards the next rock band that would take me up to the summit.

I really must remember the GoPro. It’s not much fun scrambling with one hand while you grip a camera in the other, trying to watch your feet and the viewfinder at the same time! But it worked out no bad.

Some spiced ginger and Kirriemuir gingerbread on the summit and I was off. The air was very still with only a light, cool breeze blowing from the east but the sun had gone in for the day and up the coast I could see wraiths and vapours surround the Storr and quickly shroud the Cuillin ridge across the glen. So I headed off in case it came this way as it’s not a good place to wander around in the clag.

There are some impressive chunks of ridge on this section, heading for the Clach Glas ridge. Rather impressive when you bump into them from above but easily bypassed on the left, looking down.

Then I came to the slab I remebered from years ago. A superb bit of rock that’s again easily bypassed, thought not without some route finding.

Eventually I popped out on the slightly grassy ridge and headed left down into the cleft that marks the start of the Clach Glas ridge proper and a cracking view of the ‘Matterhorn of Skye’, Clach Glas itself.

I went along the ridge for a bit as I had a notion for doing it but it was spitting and clouds were coming and going so that fourth ascent will have to wait. Instead it was down the scree and into the coire.

There was so little water in the burn I walked down the middle, boulder hopping. It was such a mild day it felt like late summer or early spring.

It was a grand day out, scrambling in superb surroundings.

You can see all the pics here

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