Footprints Across Scotland
Why not make a few of your own!
12th November 2007
This weekend I decided on a trip out to one of the more remote mountains in Scotland. Seanna Bhraigh is situated deep between the Inverlael Forest and Freevater Forest regions east of Ullapool and many miles from the nearest approach roads. I packed my camping gear and decided to make a two day trip of it. There are a number of ways to approach this hill, all of which are long, but the one most recommended takes in the impressive northern corries. I parked at the start of the road just south from the Glen Oykel Hotel at Oykel Bridge. From here a minor road heads down to Duag Bridge and down Strath Mulzie.
Glen Einig on the way to Duag Bridge
I decided to take my bike to shorten the time taken on the approach and return. Unfortunately because I was carrying a fairly heavy pack and was soon to find the going a bit uncomfortable to say the least in places along the way; especially when travelling over some of the rougher more "cobbley" parts of the track. I think some extra padding on my saddle would have helped and maybe for the bike too! After an hours cycle I got to Corriemulzie Lodge to be greeted by a sign indicating that all walkers should leave there cars at this point, so I could obviously got much closer with the car. Another hour cycling saw me at Coire Mor on the lower slopes of Seanna Bhraigh. I stoped to speak to a Canadian guy who was waiting for his two pals to return from the top. He mentioned that there was a tidy bothy a bit further on were they had spent the previous evening.
Bothy at Coire Mor
I wandered along and decided after a quick inspection that I was just as well sleeping in there instead of in the tent. It was by now after 3.00pm so I decided to leave climbing Seanna Braigh until the following day and opted to walk up and over to Carn Ban, about 3km to the east. After unpacking my camping gear and leaving it in the bothy I headed off. The morning clouds had mainly disappeared and the bright periods of sunshine made it a pleasant walk to the top.
Toll Lochan and Carn Ban
The stags were in full cry and continued to mark there territory through out my weekend stay, even well into Saturday night they persisted, fortunately the thick walls in the bothy provided good sound proofing. After enjoying my evening meal I had an early night and looked forward to the next day. Getting up around two in the morning "to pay a visit" I stepped outside to see a clear sky and plenty of stars but after returning to bed I woke in the morning to find a greyer aspect to start the day. There was a slight mist just covering the very top of Seanna Bhraigh but I was hoping it would clear. I had breakfast and then headed out around the loch and up toward the corrie entrance. On the left is a steep ridge which leads to the sharp conical summit of Creag an Duine. This would provide some scrambling near the top but allow a circular walk around the cliff tops and onto Seanna Bhraigh.
Creag an Duine
As I climbed I had good views back down to the bothy and Loch a' Choire Mor. Looking into the corrie itself revealed the Loch Luchd Choire.
Loch Luchd Choire
After a while the mist started to descend and the views were then restricted to some shadowy rocky outlines.
Creag an Duine
Using my compass to guide me over the main plateau I duly arrived at the summit cairn and peered straight down over the close by cliff edge into a sea of grey. Taking my time over lunch I waited a while as occasionally the sun threatened to break through and clear the mist, eventually though I gave up and made my descent. After soup and a sandwich back at the bothy I re-packed my bag and headed off to find my bike, not really looking forward to the cycle out because I didn't think my rump had quite recovered from the trip in. However the mostly down hill aspect of the return did help and reduced the outward journey to 1hour 20minutes. After a quick clean up and change at Oykel bridge I was ready to head back down through Bonar Bridge, Inverness and onto Aberdeen.
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