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Finlay's Peak & the Lost Valley

Wednesday 29 & Thursday 30 March 2006


Hillwalking with Ian Cameron again, helping him with his aim of 'compleating' all the Munros by June this year.


08:30 Wednesday morning saw us meet at the Green Welly Stop in Tyndrum.  After a coffee and bacon roll we headed up to Glen Coe.




At the car park facing the three sisters the rain was coming down in sheets and the wind was rocking my car about.  We waited for half an hour and decided to press on.  The first part of the climbs a good path through boulders and forest, following  the Allt Coire Gabhail to emerge above the Lost Valley.  This is a large, flat area with cliffs on all sides which is reputed to have provided a hiding place for clansfolk and their cattle.


We followed the valley to the bealach between Bidean nam Bian and Stob Coire Sgreamhach.  The final slopes to the bealach were steep and we needed crampons.  We also dug a small avalanche pit which revealed three layers of snow - fresh powder on top, a breakable crust and more powder below.


The weather was very wild and windy on the tops - no photos I'm afraid.  We put on ski goggles and struggled up against the westerly wind.  Ian took a fall on the descent from Stob Coire Sgreamhach but was able to continue.


From Bidean we continued to Stob Coire nan Lochan and descended Broad Gully to the base of the cliffs.  After a glissade to the corrie basin we went back to the car via the path.




Ian, tired after our day battling the elements in Glen Coe.


We spent the night in Fort William and decided to climb Beinn Fhionnlaidh (Finlay's Peak) the next day.


The weather had improved but was still overcast with the cloud level just below the summits.  Most Munro baggers climb Beinn Fhionnlaidh from Glen Etive but we chose to climb the hill from Glen Creran and Glen Ure.  The approach is longer but involves walking up a quiet glen with no steep ascents.  There was snow at the top but it was mild at times in sheltered spots on the way up.




Ian was having some problems with his feet after buying a new pair of boots.  Wearing crampons for so long the previous day in Glen Coe didn't help either.


After getting to the summit we returned to our starting point via the long west ridge.  This gave some great views out to to Mull and other islands beyond Oban.


On the way back home we stopped for a meal at Ferryman's of Connel pub.  It is a traditional Scottish pub with a cosy real fire and a good pub food menu.


Two good days on the hill and three Munro's bagged!

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