An Teallach

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An Teallach
Ross-shire
Sgurr fiona.jpg
Sgurr Fiona and the Corrag Bhuidhe pinnacles
Summit: 3,478 feet NH068843
57°48’23"N, 5°15’12"W

An Teallach is a pair of mountains in Wester Ross, within Ross-shire. Its twin peaks reach 3,484 feet and 3,478 feet respectively, and each is considered a separate Munro. Associated with each is a number of Munro tops; subsidiary tops above 3,000 feet.

The mountain lies to the south-west of Dundonnell and overlooks Little Loch Broom, in an area often nicknamed the "great wilderness". An Teallach means 'The Anvil' or 'The Forge' in Gaelic; although most scholars claim the latter is most correct as the mountain's name refers more to the colour of the terrain in certain lighting conditions, rather than shape.

The mountain is mostly made of Torridonian sandstone. Like the peaks around Torridon (for which the rock is named), An Teallach has terraced sides riven with steep gullies and a sharp rocky summit crest at Sgùrr Fiona. The steepest section, known as Corrag Bhuidhe, rises above Loch Toll an Lochain. Corrag Bhuidhe's most spectacular feature is an overhanging pinnacle known as Lord Berkeley's Seat.

Summits

An Teallach is a complex mountain massif, with ten distinct summits over 3,000 feet. From 1891 to 1981, only the highest of these, Bidean a' Ghlas Thuill, had the status of a Munro – a separate mountain over 3,000 feet – but in 1981 the Scottish Mountaineering Club granted Munro status to Sgùrr Fiona, in recognition of its considerable topographic prominence, some 500 feet, and its distinct nature.[1] The complete list of Munros and Tops (subsidiary summits appearing on Munro's Tables) is now as follows:[2]

Bidean a' Ghlas Thuill 3,484 feet (1,062 m)
Asterisk.svg Glas Mheall Mòr 3,212 feet (979 m)
Asterisk.svg Glas Mheall Liath 3,150 feet (960 m)
Sgùrr Fiona 3,478 feet (1,060 m)
Asterisk.svg Corrag Bhuidhe 3,412 feet (1,040 m)
Asterisk.svg Lord Berkeley's Seat 3,379 feet (1,030 m)
Asterisk.svg Sgurr Creag an Eich 3,337 feet (1,017 m)
Asterisk.svg Stob Cadha Gobhlach 3,150 feet (960 m)
Asterisk.svg Sàil Liath 3,130 feet (954 m)
Asterisk.svg Corrag Bhuidhe Buttress 3,100 feet (945 m)
- deleted from Munro's Tables in 1997

Sgùrr Fiona

Sgùrr Fiona
Ross-shire
Sgurr Fiòna - geograph.org.uk - 1130796.jpg
Range: Torridon Hills
Summit: 3,478 NH064836
57°48’0"N, 5°15’34"W

Sgùrr Fiona is a mountain reaching 3,478 feet forming part of the great massif of An Teallach. Though considered part of the latter mountain, Sgùrr Fiona is distinctive enough and sufficiently individually prominent that it is listed as a Munro in its own right.

Ascent routes

The simplest route of ascent is probably that from Dundonnell, which follows a good path over rising ground to reach the northern summit, Bidein a' Ghlas Thuill, a distance of about four miles. From here the second summit, Sgurr Fiona, lies about a mile to the south-west.

An alternative northern route heads up from Corrie Hallie, which lies about two and a half miles south of Dundonnell. This route, some three miles in length, climbs steeply up the headwall of the corrie of Glas Tholl to reach the main ridge just north of Bidein a' Ghlas Thuill.

Both of the above routes, however, miss out the central section, for which An Teallach is best known. A route reaching the summits from the south starts from near Corrie Hallie. It then follows a track (later a path) south-west for about three miles. Then it breaks off to the north, climbing the southern end of the ridge by way of a subsidiary summit known as Sàil Liath. Heading north-west towards the Corrag Bhuidhe buttresses a choice must be made. One may either scramble over them directly (including the crossing of Lord Berkley's Seat), or take the bypass path on the south-west side. This path is eroded in some places and should not be regarded as an easy option.

The winter traverse of the ridge is probably more demanding than that of Liathach or the Aonach Eagach, because of the comparative remoteness of the mountain. Some parties use the bothy at Shenavall as an overnight base.

Outside links

360° view from Sgurr Fiona, An Teallach

References

  1. Scottish Mountaineering Club - The New Munros. Accessed 8 November 2006.
  2. Database of British and Irish Hills. Version 12, accessed 20 December 2011.