Monday, 4 February 2013

02.02.2013 - Aonach Eagach

After abandoning our day on the Carn mor Dearg arete yesterday and with the weather looking promising, I was keen to get out again and this time opted for a pleasantly interesting stroll along the Aonach Eagach in Glencoe.  Meeting Craig, Andy and Anna early at the Clachaig Inn, and leaving a car at the end of our proposed descent route, we drove on to the car park at the bottom of Am Bodach which was quite busy.  The initial steep ascent of Am Bodach is always a long tediously steep shock to the legs, fresh from the comforts of the car but remains a pleasure on the eyes, offering stunning views of the surrounding mountains and coires.  Not far from the top, we met the same group of 4 from London we had helped the previous day on Carn Mor Dearg and after short friendly chat, happy to see they had taken our advice and hired some suitable boots and crampons, we pressed on to the top.  We geared up as quickly as we could to leave a good distance between them and us on the bad step. Craig and I set about constructing an abseil down the bad step using some tat round a good spike anchor and with a 60m rope (you could get away with a 50m!), which we all proceeded down quite quickly.  The ridge itself was in good condition and weather was very tame compared to the previous day! We made good time along to Meall Dearg and enjoyed the interesting terrain.  We had seen a pair in front of us who were moving together on a rope in a very haphazard and in my opinion, dangerous way.  We arrived at the pinnacles to witness the pair death roping on the pinnacles with no natural or placed protection to stop one pulling the other off the ridge should either of them slip.  At this point we decided to wait, not to pressure them into feeling they had to move faster.  Once they had cleared, we all breathed a collective sigh of relief and set about constructing a belay to protect my traverse.  Once I had traversed the pinnacles, I set up a tensioned traverse line to protect the rest while they crossed the pinnacles, and brought Andy across on belay as the last man.  From there on the going was relatively straight forward to the top of Stob Coire Leith and then on to Sgorr nam Fiannaidh, from which we descended to the saddle between there and the pap, then down the path to Leacantuim and to the car.  A very enjoyable day out on a route I couldnt imagine ever tiring of. Cheers guys!

looking over to Stob Coire nan Lochan

Andy, Myself and Craig enjoying the day

Andy in his element 

Anna on abseil

Anna safeguarding Craigs abseil while Andy waits his turn

good conditions

looking West from Meall Dearg along the ridge

Andy, Anna and Craig enjoying the route

Craig and Anna on typical Aonach Eagach terrain

Garbh Bheinn from the Aonach Eagach

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