Thursday, 7 June 2018

At the top of the Devil's Staircase: Bheinn Bheag and Stob Mhic Mhartain

5 June 2018

Participants: Just me
Where: Bheinn Bheag, 616m/2021', P68m, TuMP, OS 41, NN 221580 and Stob Mhic Mhartain, 707m/2,320', P36m, NN 208 576

It was a bit cloudier than I had hoped but it was lifting off the higher summits as I pulled into the car park near to the start of the route over the Devil's Staircase at the mouth of Glencoe. The Staircase itself was new to me, as usual when I was younger, I had concentrated all my activities on the Munros and Corbetts. Both of today's hills were in view almost as soon as I started to ascend the Staircase. Bheinn Bheag.....


and Stob Mhic Mhartain.....


Although they are classed as TuMPS, they are in a different class altogether from the small hills that I have been climbing for most of the year so far. The Staircase is of course part of the West Highland Way and there were a few people trudging up with overloaded rucksacks, not for me! My two hills obviously receive a fair number of visitors as rough paths led off to them from the cairn at the highest point of the Staircase. Approaching Bheinn Bheag with the Blackwater Reservoir in the background.....
 
 
Although it was cloudy it was also hot and the humidity was high. So I was glad to have a rest at the cairn and admire the view.....
 
 
The eastern Mamores, Am Bodach to Sgurr Eilde Mor with the eastern end of the Grey Corries and Sgurr Innse beyond......
 
 
Beinn a'Chrulaiste looking dark (I hadn't realised till I saw it from this angle just how big a hill it is).....
 
 
On the way back to the Staircase, I took a couple of photos of the next objective, Stob Mhic Mhartain.....
 
 
 
It is the better hill of two and could in fact be held to be the start of a Greater Aonach Eagach traverse, although that is not something that I would be able to attempt nowadays. It's summit is much closer to the big mountains on the south side of Glencoe and by moving 30 yards or so to the edge of the south face also provides a great view down to the glen and onward to Rannoch Moor.
 
The rather unsightly summit cairn.....
 
 
Bidean nam Bian.....
 
 
Buachaille Etive Mor and Creise.....
 
 
The Buachaille again this time from the better viewpoint.....
 
 
My phone camera which has a mind of its own occasionally decides to offer me a panorama based on a photo that I have taken but with extra content. I don't have a clue how it does this but I was sure glad that it chose this one showing Beinn a'Chrulaiste, Rannoch Moor, Buachaille Etive Mor and Buachaille Etive Beag.....
 
 
 I hung about the summit for a good half hour before making my way back. It was almost too hot to be out in the open! A view to Bheinn Bheag and the Blackwater Reservoir taken on the descent.....