I set off across the Corran Ferry to Ardgour one gloriously sunny Sunday morning following the Scottish VW California meet in late May. The deep blue sky and fluffy cumulous clouds reflected off the calm water. Fort William had been bustling with the bank holiday crowds, but it took only a short ferry crossing to restore peace and quiet.
The ferry carried just a couple of camper vans and motorhomes, plus a peleton of lycra-clad cyclists.
The Corbett, Garbh Bheinn stands proud over Loch Linnhe and is a prominent sight when driving north from Glen Coe and Ballachulish. Its jagged outline marks it out as one of the finest hills in the West Highlands and up close, its huge buttresses above Coire an Iubhair are impressive. Luckily, there’s a clear and easy path between the two summit peaks for walkers although two climbers were clearly having lots of fun taking the more interesting route up the cliffs.
I parked near the old bridge near Inversanda on the A861, just five miles or so from the ferry. From there a faint path follows the straightforward rocky ridge NW which takes a slightly meandering route to skirt around the steepest of the crags. I soon gained some fine views over Loch Linnhe with a bit of height.
Lochans made for picturesque snaps, reflecting the fluffy clouds. Below, you can see the narrows at Ballachulish with the Mamores on the left and the Glen Coe hills on the right.
Dark, moisture-laden clouds welled up by the time I reached the summit at lunchtime, blown in from the west. You can just make out the outlines of Eigg and Rum on the horizon on the photo below.
I descended directly from the bealach between the two summits to the head of Coire an Iubhair. Right at the top of the gully were the last remnants of snow in a pile about two feet deep. It was odd to see dried, windblown grass on top of the snow; a sign that in May both snow and dry, warm weather are often never far apart.
It was a very steep and shingly descent at first that finally led to grassy, bouldery slopes wedged between the steep rock sides. Once into the valley the return was straightforward, and I was glad that with the recent spell of dry weather there was an absence of bogs.
After this warm 5-hour walk I was glad of a cool drink back at the van …