It's been a long winter and despite it now being officially spring, the snow had not yet relented when the Adventure Out group met for Easter at the remote hostel of Loch Ossian in the western highlands of Scotland. The hostel is an attractive old wooden stable building at the head of Loch Ossian and sits on a small promontory on the shores of the loch, surrounded by a wooded archipelago of islands.
The hostel can only be reached on foot or by rail from the railway halt of Corrour on the west highland railway running between Glasgow and Fort William. The hostel is a mile from the station down a land rover track. The station of Corrour itself has the Station House Inn and a signal box offering B&B accommodation and is owned by the Corrour Estate. The main estate lodge is at the foot of the loch and is a modern building designed collaboratively by the Norwegian owner and Suzy Hoodless.
The hostel is at roughly 400m above sea level and gives access to many walks up the surrounding mountains. Nearby is Beinn na Lap (Mottled Hill), an easy Munro and opposite rises Leum Uilleim (William’s Leap) a lovely horseshoe Corbett rising to over 900m. Some of us arrived on the midday train on Good Friday and had time in the afternoon to climb Beinn na Lap in quite inclement conditions of poor visibility and blown spindrift, but we did get some views from lower down the hill though.
Saturday, we split into two parties, those suitably equipped for a winter mountain walk walked over the nearby munros of Sgor Gaibhre (Goat’s Peak) and Carn Dearg (Red Hill or Cairn), while others took a low level but long route to the remote bothies of Stoaineagn and Meannanach along paths that (if taken to their terminus) eventually connect to Fort William.
Sunday 1st April was one of those special clear sunny winter days in Scotland that you only get very occasionally, clear blue skies and crisp snow on the mountains and clear views of mountains all around. The main party climbed Leum Uilleim; this mountain's isolation from higher mountains gives it uninterrupted views of the Glencoe mountains and the Ben Nevis range. Others headed for a longer walk up Chno Dearg and Garbh Beinn.
The restaurant at the station had been booked for our evening meal and the quantities of food served were nearly the finish of some us.
Most of the group departed on Monday morning with some of us staying on for another night (no exclusive use for us of the hostel for Monday though). This was a memorable meet in a unique location that will raise the bar for future Easter meets.
Recent history of Easter Meets:
2018 – Loch Ossian
2017 – Achmelvich
2016 – Isle of Rum
2015 – Isle of Arran
2014 – Knoydart
2013 – Gairloch
2012 – Isle of Harris
If you’re interested in something a bit more adventurous, check out Adventure Out’s future meets in the mountain areas of the UK. The next meet is a wild camping/bothy meet at Pitlochry.
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