18.09.2011 - 18.09.2011
Everytime we drive the 6 miles between Poolewe and Gairloch we eye up this small crag 3 min down the road from the croft where we are staying. It is rocky and craggy and inviting. Today we accepted the invitation for an explore. From the carpark we headed up and over a small rocky knoll always lookuing at the crag for a possible route up. But it was too steep and we ended up picking up quite a good footpath (which would have saved us quite a bit of work but not been so interesting).
As we came to a pair of huge square boulders (probably one boulder that split in two when it fell off the main outcropping) we spied a gully that looked promising. A tiring half hour later we made the top and happily discovered we weren't far away from the summit cairn at all. So now I have added Creag Mhor Thollaidh (343m) to my bagged peaks list. Not as impressive as the hills we wanted to climb but fun for its exploration factor.
We decided we would traverse along the tops and pick up the footpath again at the saddle before it dropped down to Loch Maree. But hills over here don't have the same well-defined ridges that they do in New Zealand. There are many routes you can take to get to where you want to go. It would be easy to end up in a quite a different place from where you want to go. But yet again we managed some pretty spot-on navigation. The only time it really failed us was when we were going over the hummocky hill we had started the day with and Louise led us off track a bit. Her excuse is that we were deep in conversation about the woes of the world and she wasn't paying attention to where we were going. Luckily, in this case it didn't take much to rectify (and we didn't have to follow my usual advice to "go straight down" as that would have involved down-climbing some bluffs).