Author Topic: Beinn Fhada (Kintail) West Ridge - how 'bad' is the step?  (Read 1057 times)


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I'm after a wee bit of advice regarding the West Ridge of Beinn Fhada (Kintail)

I plan to walk the Affric-Kintail Way from W to E next week and figure that, since the aforementioned munro lies parallel to Glen Lichd, I might as well walk the length of the mountain instead of the valley for the first day if the weather's ok.

However, I keep encountering references to the 'bad step' near Sgurr a' Choire Ghairbh, and sloping slabs in particular.

So, my questions are these:

1. What grade is the scramble (assuming it's dry)?
2. Am I correct in assuming that I would be descending the step if heading from W to E?
3. Is there any snow in that area yet (I saw plenty on The Ben a coupe of weeks ago, but none on the Mamores)?

Any help would be much appreciated.


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Had to dig deep into my diary/journal for this one....November 1975.
From what I recall the bit with the most rock scramble would coming from your intended direction be in descent.  The scrambling bits are of a very low grade.
We were camped up close to the EUMC cottage and of course walked in the opposite direction.....afterwards up to Camban bothy for a night then Ciste Dubh and Aonach Meadhoin prior to dropping down to Cluanie.
Of course weather can be different and maybe by then a big fall of snow the moment looking out to the western Cairngorms no snow showing at the moment.....things can change by the day.
Plenty of other Munros alongside the path out to Affric. :)


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Thanks for your reply. I started looking at the Sisters of Kintail, but the line of Munros keeps going on and on to the east. It was hard to decide where to draw the line and descend into the valley, whether to attempt a high camp half way etc, especially as I will be using new camping just one Munro the other side of the valley seemed simpler.

I'm a bit iffy about scrambling down stuff, especially as I will be carrying a large pack, but it's good to know that it's not too difficult.

I'm beginning to think about sticking to the valley, and enjoying the extra time that will give me by lingering longer in the pine forest on what should be day three of a four day walk, taking more time to enjoy the wildlife. I'm expecting to have plenty of opportunity to observe the red deer rut throughout the walk, so more time for that would be good too....unless blue skies simply insist that I head upward when leaving Morvich.   

Thanks again.


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I've done the five sisters and the brothers carrying camping kit, as I camped on the ridge. If you don't like scrambling down that wouldn't be a good route. I did Bienn Fhada from the east then dropped down to the north, I haven't climbed it from the west. It was very wet and misty when I was there, navigation wasn't easy as it's complex up there.


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I find that it takes me a while to adjust to scrambling. I start off a bit nervous, then relax and get into it. I'm determined to push myself do more scrambling, especially so that I can head to Skye at some point. However, this year has been a year for romping over the Glen Shee and White Mounth hills and the like, taking advance of the good weather to get some high camps in and carry a lighter pack.  Next year, I hope, will be the year for doing more scrambles....

I do like a bit of complex navigation now and then - I particularly enjoyed a wet and wild Lochnagar earlier in the year (camping in a thunderstorm the previous night, however, was not so much fun...)

I need to spend some time above the Great Glen, so I'll probably look at the area again with a view to heading up some munros next year....

Aside from my rigmarole-ous ramblings thanks for the replies. They have been helpful in my decision-making :)