Lagangarbh is one of the most iconic mountaineering huts in Scotland, nestling as it does in a picturesque location at the foot of Buachaille Etive Mor. It was originally a crofting home, but has been maintained by the Scottish Mountaineering Club since 1946.
For an increasingly large proportion of Moray Mountaineers, the weekend starts shortly after the last one finished. Alistair and Adele were the first of such “mid-weekers”. On Thursday, they did a round including Bidean nam Bian and on Friday Stob Ghabhar and Stob a Coire Odhair from Victoria Bridge.
Alan and Fiona walked west from Victoria Bridge to the Graham Beinn Suidhe. “Very hot and sunny. Thought we had escaped the forecast showers but got a real soaking on the walk out.” They also spotted a fox running across the open hillside.
Fiona Cuninghame and Bob MacDonald ascended Bidean nam Bian via Stop Coire nan Lochan with plenty of time to look at recent path work by the National Trust for Scotland. “Superb views all the way along the ridge to Stob Coire Sgreamhach before a tired decent through the superbly atmospheric Lost Valley”.
Bob S was another early starter. He focused his efforts on the Glen Etive Corbetts, with an ascent of the rather steep, Stob Dubh on Friday followed by Beinn Trilleachan on Saturday.
Saturday dawned misty, but the forecast was reasonable, apart from the risk of heavy showers later. Adrian mountain biked to Bridge of Orchy and back with his dog Minnie. Most of the journey was along the West Highland Way, with a detour to the Glen Coe Ski Centre for a few pints and another detour into a bog…Adrian’s write-up is non-specific on the order of these events.
Alistair, Sheena and Dan left the hut, turned right and went up. The BRB records “misty clag at 8am was not promising, but it was great to walk from the hut straight up the hill. We were soon rewarded as the clag cleared and the route revealed itself. Fantastic sustained scrambling with panoramic views of Rannoch Moor and beyond. Took a minor detour to take in Crowberry Tower. Had second lunch on the summit (apart from Alistair, who had made the mistake of eating all his lunch at first lunch). Continued along the ridge to the western summit for third lunch (Alistair watched). Descended by a good path into the Lairig Gartain and had a cool off in the river.”
Alan, Fiona and Adele ascended Beinn an Dothaidh and Beinn Dorain from Bridge of Orchy. “Headed up to the Bealach following the stream most of the way. Boiling hot day! Stopped to soak our feet in the stream en route. Visited the 3 tops on Beinn an Dothaidh. Continued back to the bealach and on up to the ridge of Beinn Dorain (Alan’s last munro 18 years ago). Two great hills.”
Bob and Fiona went up Beinn Mhanach. “lovely walk through the glen followed by a long slog up to the top. Rather than heading down in such stunning weather we nipped across to Beinn a’ Chuirn. Seemed foolish to head back to the bealach (what do the guidebooks know), so took a “short cut’ down and spent the next hour regretting it. Loads of butterflies out in the sunny weather.”
Everyone returned safely to the hut and the hordes of tourists on the A82 eventually dispersed to their B&Bs. Time to crack open a beer on the veranda and watch the sun set? …Err no. The resident human population in the vicinity of Lagangarbh is sparse, but you are not alone! According to the latest census, 24 million midges inhabit the hectare of land surrounding the hut (and every other hectare of prime habitat). Suffice to say, that we hurried inside and bolted the door (rather futile since even the key hole could accommodate the simultaneous passage of hundreds of the blighters).
Sunday was wet and so most folk went home (via various tea shops), but Adele and Sheena continued their adventures with another three hill days.