TR - Sgurr nan Gillean



D

druidh

Guest
Continuing my theme of bagging the Cuillin in small increments, it was
the turn of Sgurr nan Gillean. Luckily, the midsummer weather in Skye
was the same as last year - cloud just above the tops, broken by
patches of blue. This was markedly better than it had been leaving
Edinburgh earlier that morning and had improved even from the time we
had pitched the tents in Portree. In fact when the sun broke through it
was rather too warm. The start of the walk was delayed as we watched a
yellow SAR helicopter land at the Sligachan MRT base. I wasn't quite
sure how to view this - it seemed to have rather too many bad
connotations. A quick skoosh of suncream and Avon SSS and we were off.

The route up to the ridge from Sligachan is pretty obvious and is now
well surfaced. Fast, easy progress was possible and I managed to "bag"
Skye's only Geocache en route. The route up the side of Coire Riabhach
was a bit loose in places, boulders overlying scree isn't the most
secure surface and at times we had to go up one at a time to avoid any
rockfall risk. On reaching the ridge, the views across the whole of the
Cuillin opened up and it was possible to make out the shapes of other
walkers and climbers dotted around the skyline. The view from here to
the summit of Gillean was suitably daunting and wasn't improved by
seeing the speed at which some people were descending. Frankly, they
seemed to be taking forever over some of the rocky steps.

Anyway - no time to daunder, so up we went. The first section was easy
enough, but we soon hit a small chimney which required a bit of stretch
to exit. Along a little ledge and we were under some large, sloping
boulders which we had to ascend directly. Being basalt, they didn't
have quite the sure-footed feel of gabbro and we were glad that it was
a dry day. A couple of other steps up and we were soon on the very
summit ridge, with it's little rocky steps and narrow "pinched" ridge.
The summit was a bit larger than I'd been led to believe and were able
to relax and watch groups ascending Am Basteir (which looks *really*
scary from here!) The views were great - at this time of year, it can
get a bit hazy, but today we could see a long, long way.

Then it was time to go. The slopy boulders proved to be no more
difficult in descent and the biggest concern was re-applying the
anti-midge as they'd now caught up with us. There was a brief
discussion about going on to the lower peaks along the ridge (Sgurr
Beag and Sgurr na-h Uamha), but that was soon cut short by mention of
curry and beer in Portree!




druidh
 
T

theo

Guest
"druidh" <[email protected]> schreef in bericht
news:[email protected]
> Continuing my theme of bagging the Cuillin in small increments, it was
> the turn of Sgurr nan Gillean. Luckily, the midsummer weather in Skye
> was the same as last year - cloud just above the tops, broken by
> patches of blue. This was markedly better than it had been leaving
> Edinburgh earlier that morning and had improved even from the time we
> had pitched the tents in Portree. In fact when the sun broke through it
> was rather too warm. The start of the walk was delayed as we watched a
> yellow SAR helicopter land at the Sligachan MRT base. I wasn't quite
> sure how to view this - it seemed to have rather too many bad
> connotations. A quick skoosh of suncream and Avon SSS and we were off.
>
> The route up to the ridge from Sligachan is pretty obvious and is now
> well surfaced. Fast, easy progress was possible and I managed to "bag"
> Skye's only Geocache en route. The route up the side of Coire Riabhach
> was a bit loose in places, boulders overlying scree isn't the most
> secure surface and at times we had to go up one at a time to avoid any
> rockfall risk. On reaching the ridge, the views across the whole of the
> Cuillin opened up and it was possible to make out the shapes of other
> walkers and climbers dotted around the skyline. The view from here to
> the summit of Gillean was suitably daunting and wasn't improved by
> seeing the speed at which some people were descending. Frankly, they
> seemed to be taking forever over some of the rocky steps.
>
> Anyway - no time to daunder, so up we went. The first section was easy
> enough, but we soon hit a small chimney which required a bit of stretch
> to exit. Along a little ledge and we were under some large, sloping
> boulders which we had to ascend directly. Being basalt, they didn't
> have quite the sure-footed feel of gabbro and we were glad that it was
> a dry day. A couple of other steps up and we were soon on the very
> summit ridge, with it's little rocky steps and narrow "pinched" ridge.
> The summit was a bit larger than I'd been led to believe and were able
> to relax and watch groups ascending Am Basteir (which looks *really*
> scary from here!) The views were great - at this time of year, it can
> get a bit hazy, but today we could see a long, long way.
>
> Then it was time to go. The slopy boulders proved to be no more
> difficult in descent and the biggest concern was re-applying the
> anti-midge as they'd now caught up with us. There was a brief
> discussion about going on to the lower peaks along the ridge (Sgurr
> Beag and Sgurr na-h Uamha), but that was soon cut short by mention of
> curry and beer in Portree!


I followed almost the same route a couple years ago. Went too far to the
right at the steepest part of the ridge and felt more like a fly walking on
a straight wall. The summit was in clouds and felt like a *magic carpet
floating in the air*. As soon as the sky cleared that feeling disappeared.
My oldest son (6) is called Gillean and his character is like the mountain
itself.

--
Theo
www.theosphotos.fotopic.net