Geal Charn - 926m
Monday 16th July 2012

Weather/Conditions: Really nice, sunny day. Warm weather, ideal for walking.
Distance/Ascent/Time: 13.8km / 650m / 3h 35m
Accompanying: Alone

Geal Charn is a solitary Munro in the Monadhliath, and would be my last Munro in the central Highlands. I'd stayed in Fort William the previous night, but made the journey back to Laggan to knock off this last summit.

I parked up at Garva Bridge and set off under a hot sun. The best route wasn't immediately obvious to me, thus I cut off up the moors too early and wound up bog-bashing right from the outset. It's a real nice area, and I caught it just prior to the Beauly-Denny construction works, which was a bonus I wished I'd been aware of at the time.

The way up from Garva seems somewhat long-winded and I certainly felt the distance. I recall looking out over the Monadhliath from perhaps halfway up, thinking about how the endless heather plodding could drive you to complete frustration! But the incline of the slope leading to the summit is so gradual that you seem to have to walk a long way to gain any height.

Geal Charn probably falls into that category of hill that wouldn't be so inviting on a bad-weather day. But today, the views really made it. And it was nice to (at along last) get good views onto the Monadhliath, a range that seems so flat as to appear not to actually exist: it's hard to get a sightline into it. Once out of the lower slopes, a short blunt ridge took me to the summit cairn, and from there I had a walk out over to the rim of the hill's eastern coire, wherein you'll find a lochan enclosed.

The following year I'd come up from Glen Markie, which is also a nice way to do the hill. It's probably also preferable in interest to the Garva Bridge side. One day I'll do all the Monadhliath in a clean sweep - if I can be patient with the bogs :-)

Descent was slightly better - I picked up a better track and ended up back at the car. The greatest satisfaction of this day was to know that I'd finally climbed a significant chunk of the Munros south of the Highland boundary fault. A week or so later, I did the Cairngorms in a single clean sweep, and a few weeks after that I did a 12-Munro round of Loch Mullardoch, which gave 10 new Munros.

This period spanning the summer of 2012 was really when my Munro-going seemed to flourish and I finally managed to achieve so many things I'd wanted to do. And then there as the following summer on top of that...

After Geal Charn, I headed back to Fort William, absolutely pleased as hell, and now ready to make inroads toward getting home. Not before the Buachaille, which I'd do the following day...


Geal Charn, 360°

Geal Charn, 200° Detail
Times (Time relative to 0.00)
(0.00) 12.45pm Garva Bridge
(1.50) 2.35pm Geal Charn
(3.35) 4.20pm Garva Bridge
Camera times (listed above) are 1h 48m earlier than cars time (photographed)

Written: 2015-08-04