SPI­DEAN MIALACH SCOT­LAND

Trail (UK) - - Base Camp -

Bar­gain-hunt­ing Mun­robag­gers seek­ing out two fine sum­mits for the price of one while not want­ing to com­pro­mise on scenic moun­tain views should look nae fur­ther than Spi­dean Mialach and its close neigh­bour Gleouraich. Sit­u­ated roughly 40km from Fort Wil­liam in the north­west High­lands, the peak of Spi­dean Mialach (pro­nounced ‘speedyan meeal­loch’) stands just four me­tres short of 1000m and yet is con­sid­ered one of the least de­mand­ing as­cents in the area.

Aes­thet­i­cally, this Munro’s two faces boast an ar­rest­ing con­trast. Its north­ern side com­prises steep, craggy slopes of cor­ries and ridges, while gen­tle grassy slopes melt down its south­ern face. Ly­ing in prime deer-stalk­ing coun­try, Spi­dean Mialach trans­lates in Gaelic to ‘peak of the deer’ and, fit­tingly, it is a net­work of stalker’s paths that of­fer the best as­cent routes up its south-fac­ing slopes.

From reach­ing the sum­mit – which is marked with a slen­der cairn and a rocky wind­break – a 2.5km ridge runs west to its slightly larger neigh­bour, Gleouraich. The de­scent from here pro­vides some very fine and re­ward­ing views to­wards Loch Cuaich be­low. Tack­ling this route in re­verse, and so fin­ish­ing with Spi­dean Mialach, is just as agree­able. Ei­ther way two se­cluded Mun­ros can be bagged in a fairly easy-go­ing but ful­fill­ing day’s hill­walk­ing.

GRA­HAM BRAD­SHAW

The view west from the sum­mit of Spi­dean Mialach across Loch Cuaich just af­ter sun­rise, with first light hit­ting the moun­tains of Gairich, Sgurr Mor and Sgurr na Ciche, deep in neigh­bour­ing Knoy­dart.

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