Ridge Traverse east to west

Ridge Traverse east to west

Page Type: Route
Lat/Lon: 56.68100°N / 5.002°W
Route Type: Scramble in good conditions; Scottish Grade II/III
Time Required: Most of a day
Difficulty: Varies with conditions - see route type

Approach


If driving, park on the A82 road in one of the laybys or car parks near to Alt-na-reigh at the eastern end of the Aonach Eagach.


Route Description


1. Ascend the distinct ridge to the summit of Am Bodach which winds its way up through rocks and outcrops.

2. From Am Bodach down climb for about 10m following the polished rock and crampon scratches onto an exposed stance then follow the easier ridge up to the summit of Meall Dearg.

3. From Meall Dearg continue west and over the pinnacles that bar the route ahead for nearly 1km. Note describing particular routes over the pinnacles would be pointless, the best way to tackle them is follow the worn rock and crampon scratches and make decisions on the fly as to the best way to go. The exposure at times is significant and the last two pinnacles are the most difficult however the climbing never exceeds moderate (British grade). After the pinnacles the ridge eases on the pull up to the top of Stob Coire Leith.

4. From Stob Coire Leith the ridge becomes an easy walk to the highest top of Sgor nam Fiannaidh near the western end of the main ridge.

5. The normal route of descent begins about 700 m west along the ridge from Sgor nam Fiannaidh and takes the path above the right side (west) of the deep Clachaig gully wich leads down to the Clachaig Hotel, however this route demands special care as the path is eroded, loose and steep (several people have been killed on this descent). Note I believe the Scottish Mountaineering Club recommend going a further one and a half km north-west to the col below the Pap of Glencoe and descending south-west to the road.

6. From the Clachaig Hotel follow the road back up the glen for about 4 km to where you parked your car. Note: if time permits and you are not driving then a celebratory beer in the Clachaig Hotel is to be recommended.

Essential Gear


In dry and good conditions, competent/experienced parties will need no special equipment. The less experienced may require a rope and a few pieces of gear for assurance on more difficult and exposed sections

Under winter conditions the Aonach Eagach ridge is only for the experienced and axes/crampons are essential. Capable parties may be able to solo most sections however most people will require a rope, several krabs, a few slings and hexes. An ice hook is useful for quickly banging into cracks.

Miscellaneous Info


If you have information about this route that doesn't pertain to any of the other sections, please add it here.