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Subject Topic: Rannoch station to Glen Nevis wild camp Post Reply Post New Topic
Message posted by Ewen c via mobile 05/6/2022 at 8:51am
Outfit:  Tents     Location:  County Kildare Ireland EU.
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The West Highland train deposited me at Rannoch station late on a damp Monday afternoon.



I set off along the road towards Bridge of Gaur, the fairy Hill, Schiehallion in front.



There was a promise of rain but none as of yet. My first stage would be along an old drove road, the road to the Isles, as far as Corrour old lodge.



The road had been improved for míni hydro schemes. I found them unobtrusive and any new buildings were in local stone. I was grateful for a dry walk as the rain came on.

Behind me was the expanse of Rannoch moor and the Orch hills and to the left Blackwater reservoir and the Glencoe mountains. Snow still clung to the corries and the forecast was for a cold night. The water filter would be put in the sleeping bag just in case.





Hood up, in my own world, I almost jumped out of my skin at a "hello" behind me. A Welsh cyclist Lindsay had come up behind. He was cycling from Derby to Cape Wrath and putting in serious mileage. We chatted and I proposed the good pitches at Rannoch old lodge about 2km further on. Off he went and I followed at a much slower pace.
Over the next rise, the ruins of the old lodge came in to sight and Lindsay's tent.



Usually you can ford the river here but the water was high. I met another 2 cyclists who had come from Spean Bridge via the Lairigh Leacath. I then went usgptream a bit and found a crossing point.
The wind was quite high so rather than pitch up higher in the ruins I Pitched near Lindsay in the lee.



My tea was Chicken tikka from real Turmat. It was really tasty but the portion was too much for me. The new soto stove boiled water I no time and I also made use of a real turmat isotonic drink.
There was a mobile signal near my pitch so a quick message to my wife and a few photos. After travelling on 3 trains to Rannoch since early morning I didn't want to wait for sunset so retired to bed. Day one was over. Two more to go.




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Message posted by jim oldham05/6/2022 at 9:03am
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Thanks for the posting. Dramatic scenery.

Message posted by Wendyhouse05/6/2022 at 9:19am
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Superb. Thanks

Message posted by seanfdh05/6/2022 at 9:35am
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Looks great. Looking forwards to part two.

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Sean

Message posted by Ewen c via mobile 05/6/2022 at 9:47am
Outfit:  Tents     Location:  County Kildare Ireland EU.
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Day two. Rannoch old lodge to Meanach bothy.

The morning was dry enough as I made a coffee and contemplated whether it would be worth the detour to Corrour station tearoom for a bacon roll. A quick check of the pitch. No trace I had been there except for some flattened grass and I headed on. Lindsay passed me later. He was heading for Fort Augustus and we wished each other well on our journeys.



The Grey corries were ahead and to the left, Leum Uilleum, the hill of trainspotting fame, asI headed towards Loch Ossian.





Soon Loch Ossian came into view and the youth hostel.



There I would be on the thieves road that my Cameron ancestors used to drive captured cattle from Badenoch. I had the choice to continue on the road to Corrour station and then a boggy path to Loch Tréig or continue on the dry but stoney direct route.



I decided on the direct route. A roll and bacon could be had in Fort William.

Loch Tréig hoved into sight and also the roar of a Hercules flying low. I had seen one on Monday at Crianlarich. This one was practising low level flights through the Glens.



At Loch Tréig head, the good path would end and also the final bridge. At the abandoned Lodge I had lunch and coffee, ready for the last few KMs to Meanach.





The Loch was showing signs that rain was coming. Little did I guess how much.



I passed Staonaig bothy on the other side of the river. The stepping stones were still above the water but I could see the river was reaching spate.



The path came and went and it got boggier and boggier and then I saw the trees at Luibelt in the distance.



They meant that Meanach was close. Luibelt is now without a roof but I never stayed in it. It has a spooky reputation and two entwined Rowans at the front door. I'm not superstitious but I know my folklore. Rowan is planted to keep evil away from the house. At the door implies it is keeping something in

Soon Meanach hove into view, an oasis of firm dry ground and somewhere out of the wind.



I intended camping by the bothy. Meanach always had mice. However, I could see no trace and the weather signs looked ominous so I decided to stay in the bothy. Alas, I had no firewood but it was dry.



I had it all to myself. A couple of lads came in on their way to Staonaig but that was it. A quick walk to the river for water and dinner was on. Hang all the gear up in case of mice and hang the tent to dry and air.



A dram as a nightcap and day 2 was done. One more day to Glen Nevis.














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Message posted by Ewen c via mobile 05/6/2022 at 10:22am
Outfit:  Tents     Location:  County Kildare Ireland EU.
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Day 3. Meanach to Glen Nevis campsite.

I slept well but was awoken by the rain hammering down. Today would not be a photo day. The mobile got put in the rucksack to keep it dry and the rucksack cover was put on.



I had my coffee and got the waterproofs on. All packed and got ready for the walk.



What had been small burns were now small rivers. What had been paths were small burns. The water was rushing off the hills and I had to cross the watershed. Every burn was flowing into the Aibhain rath until the watershed and then the water of Nevis. The rivers were on my left but every burn intersected my path.



A combination of stepping stones and jumping got me over most. It was still raining heavily and I had a constant nose drip. Then came the first biggie. I walked upstream. It was in spate. No stepping stones and no way to jump. Now came the decision. Boots off and barefoot or boots on and squelch 10km.
Boots on. The water was too strong for bare feet. It was trying to pluck me off my feet and the walking Poles were the only things keeping me steady. I had another 2 like that to go so I squelched on, the water warming slowly and getting absorbed by my thick socks.



The approaches to Glen Nevis came in to view and the rain slackened off so the camera came out.



As I got close to Steall, a well maintained path appeared. Steall falls came into view and the first people of the day.





People were queuing to cross the commando bridge as I filtered some water. Some were in trainers. It was civilisation again and I felt overdressed in my waterproofs and big boots.
I still had Nevis gorge which is always fun with a big pack and then I was at the car park. It was still another 5km along tarmac to the campsite in soaking boots so out came the thumb. Needless to say nobody wanted a muddy, wet hiker in their car. I got to the bus stop. Another 2 hours until the next bus.
At last I had a signal so could phone the wife and let her know all was well after 2 days of no news.
Rucksack back on, thumb out. A big 4x4 German Mercedes campervan stopped and gave me a lift to the campsite. I was so grateful. Thanks German guy.
Glen Nevis campsite is massive. I had a pitch booked but asked if they had any pods left. None, so went and pitched up.



A visit to the shop for a newspaper to fill the boots, some lager and some flip flops. Then a shower and a chat with some Dutch guys who had finished the West highland way.
The shower was great, as were the clean clothes and dry socks. The site has a chippie so haddock and chips and a can and off to bed.

Next day I was up early for the bus to Fort William. Cameron country this and the name is still seen everywhere. Into the cafe at the station and got my bacon roll. I had an interesting chat with a guy from Dornoch who shared his cider for the journey and then it was a train to Edinburgh and another to my sister. All done and it all went too quickly.

-------------
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Coleman Cobra Pro 3
Coleman Cobra 2
Naturehike Star River 2
Eureka! Solitaire
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Message posted by Ewen c via mobile 05/6/2022 at 10:26am
Outfit:  Tents     Location:  County Kildare Ireland EU.
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Quote: Originally posted by jim oldham on 05/6/2022
Thanks for the posting. Dramatic scenery.



Lovely part of the world. It feels remote and it is once you get away from the stations.

-------------
Hypercamp Alaska
Vango Force 10 mk3
Vango F10 Helium 1
Coleman Cobra Pro 3
Coleman Cobra 2
Naturehike Star River 2
Eureka! Solitaire
Dutch army goretex bivvy bag

Message posted by Ewen c via mobile 05/6/2022 at 10:27am
Outfit:  Tents     Location:  County Kildare Ireland EU.
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Quote: Originally posted by seanfdh on 05/6/2022
Looks great. Looking forwards to part two.



Aye, it was not bad

-------------
Hypercamp Alaska
Vango Force 10 mk3
Vango F10 Helium 1
Coleman Cobra Pro 3
Coleman Cobra 2
Naturehike Star River 2
Eureka! Solitaire
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Message posted by Ewen c via mobile 05/6/2022 at 10:35am
Outfit:  Tents     Location:  County Kildare Ireland EU.
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Every time I finish a walk, I look at what could make it better the next time.
I reckon I have got everything down to pat. I used everything except the map and compass but I wouldn't be leaving that behind.
I took the 20000mah battery pack and only used 40%. A lighter pack could be carried but I had taken advantage of charging on the train and had hardly used the phone on day 3.
The titanium mug worked well. I'm off today for an overnight camp so will try out the new speedster stove which is so much lighter than gas.
Yet again I had to sew the tent inner at the zip. The fine material doesn't like snagging. However it kept me totally dry in a massive downpour at Glen Nevis campsite. I have toyed with the idea of a light 3 season quilt instead of the sleeping bag but I was grateful for the bag on the night of day one.
The only mistake I made was not making sure my rucksack was dialled in properly. I did have sore shoulders on day 2 which I put down to injury. It wasn't. I spent time in the bothy getting the pack right and day 3 was fine. I don't know how it had all got out of kilter, maybe when it was on the flight.

-------------
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Vango F10 Helium 1
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Naturehike Star River 2
Eureka! Solitaire
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Message posted by jim oldham06/6/2022 at 8:26am
Outfit:  VW Sharan.BaileyChampagneSeries7 2010.     Location:  Wigan
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Thanks again.

A bit dreich in places there.

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Message posted by Ewen c via mobile 06/6/2022 at 9:36am
Outfit:  Tents     Location:  County Kildare Ireland EU.
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Another deich one last night as well. Just spent 12 hours in a one man tent

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Hypercamp Alaska
Vango Force 10 mk3
Vango F10 Helium 1
Coleman Cobra Pro 3
Coleman Cobra 2
Naturehike Star River 2
Eureka! Solitaire
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Message posted by Fiona W via mobile 09/6/2022 at 1:18pm
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Excellent description of your route, Ewen. Thank you. Good to see that area away from the main road too - some cracking atmospheric photos. You know when you’ve reached civilisation by the footwear. OH used to live & work in Fort William years ago, went hill walking rather than long distance, but he still remembers people in flip flops walking up Ben Nevis.

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2022 = 8 sites, 22 nights. 2021 = 11 / 29. 2020 = 4 / 20. 2019 = 13 / 35. 2018 = 20 / 33. 2017 = 10 / 22. 2016 = 19 / 33. 2015 = 15 sites / 27 nights. Didn't count 1976 to 2014.

Message posted by Ewen c via mobile 09/6/2022 at 6:27pm
Outfit:  Tents     Location:  County Kildare Ireland EU.
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Quote: Originally posted by Fiona W on 09/6/2022
Excellent description of your route, Ewen. Thank you. Good to see that area away from the main road too - some cracking atmospheric photos. You know when you’ve reached civilisation by the footwear. OH used to live & work in Fort William years ago, went hill walking rather than long distance, but he still remembers people in flip flops walking up Ben Nevis.



Too right Fiona.
I find the long distance stuff easier than the hillwalking these days. I know I will never complete the Munros

-------------
Hypercamp Alaska
Vango Force 10 mk3
Vango F10 Helium 1
Coleman Cobra Pro 3
Coleman Cobra 2
Naturehike Star River 2
Eureka! Solitaire
Dutch army goretex bivvy bag


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