Inverardran Cottage, Crianlarich, 22-23 March 2019

The Crianlarich meet was justifiably popular, with eighteen folk making the trip south to an area where there are more Munros, Corbetts, Grahams and other lumps and bumps than you could possibly hope to encounter in a weekend elsewhere.  I should confess at this point that I am just a little biased, since this was my old stomping ground before heading North to Inverness.

As if to make my point the weekend was rather extended, with one pair arriving at Inverardran on Thursday, eight people staying on until Monday and one committed soul staying on for the rest of the following week.  Objectives over the weekend ranged from the Bridge of Orchy Munros, which saw a massed assault of eight people on Beinn Dorain and Beinn an Dothaidh; forays into the Arrochar Alps by Peter B and Barry; sundry Corbett bagging efforts involving Meall an Fhudair, Beinn Chuirn, Beinn Mhic Mhonaidh, Creag Mac Ranaich, Meall an t-Seallaidh, Beinn nan Imirean and Beinn Vrackie; and a couple of Grahams – Meall Buidhe to the east of Glen Ogle and Meall Odhar; as well as the wet weather option of walking a couple of stretches of the West Highland Way.

It is fair to say that weather gods over the weekend were a bit fickle, presenting us with a full – and random – menu of weather: wind, rain, sleet, snow, hail and sunshine.  Ben Vrackie was decided on in a coffee shop in Aberfeldy as one damp party headed homewards. Then the sun came out and we thought we really should go up a hill. It was only slightly embarrassing to be be walking up the Beinn Vrackie path in our full hill kit along with the tourists, dog walkers and toddlers. 

There is still a lot of unfinished business for some club members in this area, so I suspect that we may see it on the meet list again sometime soon.
Participants: Cerian, Kirsty R, Peter M, Marion, John, Sharan, Daniel, Kirsty G, Michael, Dougie, Robin, Shona, Ellie, Peter B, Arthur, Caroline, Ewen and Barry.
Welcome to Sharan who joined the IMC after the meet, and welcome back to former member Barry who rejoined while on the meet. 

Mountain biking meet, 3 March 2019

It was a brave team of five (Michael, Catherine, Shona, Becky and Kirsty) who headed off on a mountain biking circuit up to the Slochd, down to Sluggan Bridge, round to Boat of Garden and back over the hill to Carrbridge. It was an inauspicious start standing around in the drizzle and wind in the Carrbridge carpark.

Disaster struck in the first 2.5 km, when in the muddiest section of track imaginable Michael’s chain broke. Thankfully this was easily sorted with a quicklink, and the track and weather both improved, in fact we had quite a bit of blue sky over the day. The only other excitement was a river crossing on General Wade’s road on the hill above Carrbridge which was not as bad as it at first seemed.

We were definitely lucky with the weather (it looked miserable in the Cairngorms proper) and all had a good time – hopefully we have encouraged Becky to come along to one of our more usual meets later in the year.

Fannichs day meet, 24 February 2019

The sage of Inverness MC, who also happens to be our esteemed President, tells me that the views from Sgurr Mor on our club meet to the Fannichs on Sunday spanned from Ben Rinnes 69 miles to the east, to Harris 65 miles to the west – a distance of 134 miles – and from Morven in Caithness 62 miles to the north, to Ben Nevis also 62 miles to the south – a distance of 124 miles.

The weather in the preceding week had not been promising. The unseasonally fine weather for most of February had been replaced with strong winds, low clouds, rain and yo-yoing temperatures; the last stripping the hills of most of the remaining snow. However, Sunday dawned fine, with a bit of a chill wind and the fine views described above.

Looking east along the Fannichs – Michael G

We parked at the west end of Loch Droma and Kirsty shot off to pick up the easterly Fannich Munros.  The rest of us strolled up the hydro track to the Allt a Mhadaidh and on to Loch a Mhadaidh.   There we met Shona who had been camping overnight, testing her new tent for her upcoming long distance trip to the Pacific Crest Trail. 

Our rather more modest outing continued by picking up the unmarked stalkers path which follows the ridge from Creag Raineach Mor and skirts round the east side of Meall a Chrasgaidh to the bealach. This is a more pleasant route than flogging up the headwall and gives fine views into the corrie. At the lip of the corrie we encountered a lonely band of snow, over which we cut a staircase of steps – because we could.

Venerable gentlemen taking in the view – Shona M

Catherine set off for Sgurr nan Clach Geala, while the rest of us wandered over Carn na Criche to Sgurr Mor and Beinn Liath Mor Fannaich, meeting up with Kirsty as we descended off Sgurr Mor. A fairly steep descent off the nose of Beinn Liath Mor Fannaich brought us to a hillwalkers path (again unmarked on the map ) and back to the hydro track.

Participants: Shona, Dan, Miha, Robin, Kirsty R., Catherine, Michael, Rob, Arthur, Sharan, Anne and Masoud.