Ben Mor Coigach
|Ben Mor Coigach|
Ben Mor Coigach from the south east
|Summit:|| 2,438 feet NC094042 |
Ben Mor Coigach is a long, table-shaped mountain which dominates the Coigach peninsula, in the west of Cromartyshire, seven miles north-west of the town of Ullapool. The mountain reaches a height of 2,438 feet. Its coastal location, combined with its high topographic prominence-to-height ratio, make it a very good viewpoint.
The name, Beinn Mhòr, is very common in the Highlands and simply means "Big Mountain". Its suffix, 'Coigach' (or na Còigich in Gaelic) distinguishes it geographically from the many other mountains of that name.
The whole mountain is a nature reserve.
Ben Mor Coigach can be climbed from Bleughasary (where there is a car park) to the south-east or from Culnacraig to the south-west.
From Bleughasary, follow a land rover track (not shown on the OS map) as far as Loch Eadar dha Bheinn, then pass the outflow east of the loch and head up onto the east ridge. From here the route passes over the Speicin Coinnich and onto a large and flat summit area. The Speicin Coinnich is quite exposed but not as steep as it may appear from below.
A better starting point, albeit one requiring a longer drive in, may be Culnacraig. From here, follow the line of a long ridge towards the summit of Sgurr an Fhidhleir (the Fiddler). This summit can either be included, or traversed via its south face, before the final ascent of Ben Mor Coigach from the north-east. More direct routes are possible but appear to be steep and stony. Several more summits, forming a horseshoe ridge, can be included.
The Postman's Path
Many a walker will ascend from one of the above-mentioned starting points, then descend to the other before completing the tour on part of the "Postman's Path" along the coast from Achiltibuie to Strathcanaird.
The maps and signposts imply that the relevant stretch is about six miles long, but the warnings under the signposts do not do justice to its dangers. Even a fit walker may struggle to complete this leg in less than four hours, and most walkers should allow considerably more time, depending on fitness and the weather. There is no path along much of this route, there is only an incomplete and inadequate series of cairns and arrowed posts. It is hard to avoid straying from the route. Scrambling is required in several places, and some of these are exposed to sea cliffs. There are several unbridged crossings of fast flowing streams which may be difficult or even impossible in spate conditions. Bogs contribute further to the difficulties. Despite its low altitude, this route is steep and regarded as a true mountain experience.
The Postman's Path is so named because it was used by postmen before the village of Achiltibuie was connected to the road network. They breed the postmen tough in these parts.