TGOC2016 Revisited – Day 5 – Allt Eigheach to Loch Ericht via Rannoch Forest

It was still raining in the morning and I had a leisurely breakfast before packing up just short of 10 o’clock.  The river had been roaring all night so if there had been any noise from the nearby works I’d certainly not heard it.

It turned out that the works were part of a Hydro-Electric scheme.  I had a long chat with the foreman about which paths on the map were present on the ground and where their new access roads could be useful for me.  He also said that the grouse had recently been lekking near where I’d camped although I, unfortunately, had not seen or heard them.

I wish I’d taken a photo of the turbine building that looked nearly finished.  It was well landscaped and should have little impact on the landscape when complete – although I suppose the new roads and bridge will be there for a while.

On my route sheet, today was described as Gratuitous Hills Day.  My original planned crossing had been so short that I’d added in a day of just going up hills because they were there.  If necessary I could use my FWA….which was the huge distance of 8km!  I ended up walking a mix of my main and foul weather routes.  I was due to climb the gentle SW slope of Sron Leachd a Chaorainn then follow the ridge to Creag na h-iohair, Meall nam Fiadh and Carn Dearg (Munro), then go East to Mam Ban and Sgor Gaibhre (Munro).  Ha! Ha! Two Munros in one day; who was I trying to kid?!

I should have been up there and it really didn’t look high or difficult. I toyed with the idea all morning.

I should have been up there and it really didn’t look high or difficult. I toyed with the idea all morning.

My GPS had decided to work again today, which was nice of it.  I left it turned on to confirm I was heading towards Bealach Leathann but it was pretty obvious where I had to go: it was that dip to the right of the photo.

p1040568-2It was great up on the bealach; a bit breezy, but I had a good view of Loch Ericht and I could match up the forest with the map and work out where that night’s camping spot would be.

p1040570There was a fair bit of this….p1040576-2…. on the way down but you need a few hags to make you grateful for short, flat grass when you eventually find it.

With views like this….

p1040577-2….there was no way I could get lost today.  It was all laid out in front of me.  Easy peasy!

Whoooo!  Look at this short, flat grass!

p1040578-2I can’t remember where this photo was taken but it was somewhere in NN4764 and I was sitting down with my shoes and socks off.   It was bliss.  I had a Little Lie Down and wondered about camping right there.  After a while I decided it was time to push on for the last couple of kilometres of the day.  Of course, I was now relaxed, happy and supremely confident that I could not get lost…..  I got lost.  I think this is called Hubris.

I couldn’t work out which water course I was following?  It didn’t match anything on the map and my compass must’ve been broken.  Now that I was near to the trees I could not see the forest…. Hm, isn’t there a saying about that?

Eventually a long flat forest edge matched up with the map and I found the gap I was looking for.

p1040579-2

Looking along Loch Ericht from the SW shore.

The map shows a path / track going SE towards the dam ….. but it’s semi imaginary.  Sometimes it was there and sometimes it wasn’t.  What there was was plenty of bog.  I was getting a bit disheartened that I would not be able to find anywhere to camp but, about halfway to the dam, I found a great pitch.

p1040581-2

It’d been a great day.

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2 Responses to TGOC2016 Revisited – Day 5 – Allt Eigheach to Loch Ericht via Rannoch Forest

  1. Louise says:

    Hubris! What an excellent word!
    I know that feeling well. Nothing can go wrong. I know where I am. I know where I’m going. I can’t get…where the heck am I?!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. alan.sloman says:

    you need a few hags to make you grateful for short, flat grass when you eventually find it.
    Try saying that to Lord Elpus after a few miles of peatbog… It doesn’t go down particularly well.
    🙂

    Have now caught up. Excellent, Judith.
    🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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