After watching the forecast for a few days with my favourite, and I consider most acutate website (http://windy.tv) I planned a route to the summit of Ladhar Bheinn using areas I’d not been to previously. Ladhar Bheinn at 1020m absl is the highest of the three ‘Munro’s’ on the Knoydart Peninsula and is a hill I have now summited many times…
With approx 24km of distance and 1400m of ascent I envisaged around 10 hours or so to complete allowing for photography, food stops and the odd breather. With daylight hours at this time of year, it means either starting or finishing in the dark. I opted for an early start - 0445 when I left the house after a quick first breakfast.
Good going, and a surprising energy saw me at the Mam Li in just a little over 2 hrs. Second breakfast time..!
From the pass to the summit of Stob a Choire Odhair would be a steep ascent over two minor summits and this accounted for the majority of the ups and downs in the route. off any kind of path now it was moderately hard going. As height was gained, so too was daylight and a few orange tinted clouds told of a rising sun. I summited the Stob at around 1000.
From here a narrow rock and grassy ridge leads upwards the last hundred or so meters of ascent to the summit of Ladhair Bheinn. Old snow and frosted slopes, meant just an extra smidge of caution as I made my way.
The sun was up now, and an intermittent cold wind blew from the south over the ridges. Splendid views straight down 300+ meters into Coire Dhorrcail were under my feet.
Once on the main summit, I used the last two sheets of film in my large format camera. Had my lunch. Marvelled at the super Broken Spectre cast onto the clouds below me by the sunlight. One of the clearest I’ve seen in many decades of mountaineering at home and abroad. Unfortunately for the reader it is but a memory for me.
From the summit it is down grassy slopes, slippy with wet grass that lead to a final steeper section, wet and muddy, back to the old Sheiling at Folach and a return to the track that would lead me home for afternoon tea.
A superlative day on the hill.