the island theme, this week we venture over to the Island of Arran, to
take in a classic ridge walk. I'm making the assumption that you may wish
to begin and end at the same place, in this instance Brodick, where the
boat lands. With a knowledge of public transport the walk can be extended
to take in a third Corbett but here we'll curb our greed and stick to
two. To stick rigidly to the ridge walk requires rock-climbing ability
but the path safely and fairly obviously avoids all difficulties, particularly
those on the A'Chir Ridge.
time; when I was a lad of 16, on a family holiday, I walked solo over
all the hills on Arran, including the A'Chir Ridge. Amazing how daft you
can be when young! I also attempted to solo one of the infamous Beinn
Nuis gullies but this was really ignorant and I was probably lucky to
reverse back down to safe ground in one piece…
service to Arran runs several times daily from Ardrossan, connecting to
a coach service from Edinburgh or a train service from Glasgow. (Te: Ardrossan
01294 463 470; Brodick 01770 302 166).
takes in two Corbetts - Beinn Tarsuinn and Cir Mhor. Starting from Brodick
(distance is calculated pier to pier) take the main road north through
the village then the road to Blackwaterfoot for a short distance before
turning into the narrow road up Glen Rosa. Follow the road then the continuing
track (there are camping facilities by the river) which leads in 2 km
to the confluence of the Glenrosa Water with the Garbh Allt. Just before
this, a path will be seen on the left, rising diagonally up towards the
is reached at a small dam, which provides a crossing point, to continue
up a muddy path on the north flank of the burn. About 700m further on,
cross a tributary burn which joins the Garbh Allt and go up its west bank
for about 500m to reach a cairn marking the start of the path up the south-east
ridge of Beinn Nuis. Great climbing cliffs are in view in several directions
but we avoid these by crossing the coire to gain the shoulder and so wind
our way up to the first summit of the day with Beinn Nuis (792m).
Nuis summit, the north ridge leads easily in 1.5 km to the first Corbett,
Beinn Tarsuinn (826m). The path now descends steeply down rocky ground,
mainly on the west flank of the ridge and care is needed in poor visibility
to keep to the path. This leads to the finely named Bealach an Fhir-bhogha
(pass of the bowmen). Coire Daingean drops down to the east, with a good
view over to Goatfell.
section of the route is the A'Chir Ridge and unless you can solo easy
but exposed rock it's best to avoid the ridge by taking to the lower path
on the west flank of the ridge. This makes a gradual descent of about
100m in all, passing under the slabby rocks of the ridge, to lead to the
ridge again at the col between A'Chir and Cir Mhor.
col the SW ridge of Cir Mhor leads to its summit at 799m, with fine views
over to the Rosa Pinnacle. To descend, it's possible to go back down the
SW ridge to descend into the Fionn Choire from the col but better is to
descend the east ridge of Cir Mhor to gain The Saddle. From there a path
goes south to cross the Glenrosa Water in about 1.5 km and so on down
the west bank to regain the outward path.