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Hard: Forcan Ridge and the Saddle

This walk includes a prolonged grade 2 scramble comparable to Aonach Eagach in difficulty and exposure.

Route: A description of Forcan Ridge can be found here. It's a fairly big walk (15km and 1380m ascent, 6-8 hours) as well as having prolonged exposed scrambling on the ridge itself.

Participation statement : This has been graded hard and is potentially dangerous. A fall at the wrong place could be fatal. Please remember that you are responsible for looking after yourself and deciding whether this walk is for you or not. The organiser has no qualifications as a leader and will not be acting as one. If you have any questions, feel free to get in touch.

Meeting place: PLEASE IGNORE THE ONE GIVEN ABOVE. Meetup won't accept the real meeting point as it doesn't have a proper address. It is:

Layby on north of A87 in Glen Shiel, 300m east of a turn-off to Achnagart Farm, NG968143.

What to wear and carry: It is your responsibility to ensure that you come adequately prepared for this walk. This walk will take us over some fairly steep and possibly loose paths, so walking boots are a must. Please don't wear trainers - they won't keep your feet dry if it rains and won't give your adequate support or grip. Waterproofs - even if the weather forecast looks good (and don't forget to check the forecast before you come), waterproofs should be carried. Jeans are not recommended.

Map and compass - OS Explorer 414 Glen Shiel and Kintail Forest

A full gear list can be found here. It's obviously up to you what you bring, but the list should be taken as a strong recommendation. If you have any questions, feel free to get in touch. In October a head torch is essential in case we have a slow time and are still up on the mountain at night-fall.

Weather Forecast: cancellation or change of route is possible if rain is forecast. An up-to-date weather forecast for this walk can be found at this website a few days before the meetup. Please make sure you check it before you join us. If the weather looks really bad, we may decide to cancel or do an alternative walk - you'll be sent an email the Thursday evening before the walk to let you know if this is the case.

Accommodation: This is a long way from the central belt, so you will need to spend the previous night in the area to be there in time. The Kintail Lodge Hostel and bunkhouse are full, but there is Ratagan Youth Hostel, a campsite in Sheil Bridge, and various hotels and B&Bs within reach. Obviously wild camping is always possible. You could even drive up from Fort William. Please book early in order not to cancel too late for your space to be filled. Numbers are being kept low because of the challenging nature of the route.

Lifts / Meetup Time: Please make sure that you are at the meetup point on time or inform the organiser as we will only wait 5 minutes past the meetup time. We will be unlikely to have mobile reception that morning or the previous night, so please notify us of any problems as early as possible.

Information to include in your RSVP: Please only RSVP "yes" if you intend to come. If you change your mind, please make sure that you change your RSVP so that the organiser knows to expect you or not and also to allow other people on the waiting list to come if the walk is full. If you wish to reply yes or waiting list, please ensure that you answer the questions that you will be asked on the following page. If you don't say on your RSVP that you need a lift, we'll assume that you have one and we can't then guarantee you a lift. For those who do get a lift, please remember to bring some money to contribute towards petrol for your driver. Suggested petrol contribution for this trip is £15 per person from Glasgow. 

If you have any comments/queries, please get in touch.

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  • A former member
    A former member

    was actually one of my very favourite ridge walks and scrambles...fine arete and a great day out

    April 19, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Superb day - thanks so much to Malcolm for organising accom and food, Eve and others for driving, Richard, Stewart and David for nav. This is starting to sound like the Oscars...

    October 5, 2011

  • David B.

    Good fun day out, cheers Barnabas for organising, the only downside was the clouds, as the views are stunning as we seen the next day!!

    October 5, 2011

  • A former member
    A former member

    Nice wee outing. Wonder what the drops look like without the mist?

    October 4, 2011

  • Paul E.

    Great scramble, and good company all round. Thanks to Barnabas

    October 3, 2011

  • A former member
    A former member

    Yet another day of fun scrambling - loved it! Thanks Barnabas for the detour.

    October 2, 2011

  • Malcolm

    Confirming as follows -
    Bunkhouse - Barnabas , Helia , David , Tom Mac , Ian , Thomas Mc.
    Bedding and towels booked for last four.
    £140 (approx £12 pppn ) rental + £22 ( £5.50 pp )bedding/towels = £164 total.
    Easiest if we make one group payment probably on arrival on Friday night , though I may be a bit later now.

    September 28, 2011

  • Malcolm

    Only one weekend away now ? great ! Please remember if you want to join the group for a nice dinner on Saturday night at Kintail Lodge Hotel ( and I?d certainly recommend it !) you need to sign up by this weekend.
    Also anyone in KLH Wee Bunkhouse wanting bedding and towels (£5.50 ) please let me know and I?ll order them. For the Wee Bunkhouse it?s marginally cheaper if we pay as one lot , so just give me the cash when we arrive on Friday evening. Bunkhouse £12 pppn ie total £24.

    September 23, 2011

  • Ross

    Hi Guto, I'll take you up on the offer of sharing the room for 2 nights.
    Cheers Ross

    September 21, 2011

  • Guto R.

    Anyone interested in sharing a twin room in Cluanie Inn for the 2 nites? Sharing with an infrequent snorer! £45 in total.

    September 21, 2011

  • David B.

    Staying at Glen Shiel camp-site, see you at at start.

    September 20, 2011

  • A former member
    A former member

    Either or, Mr Orr. You can't do both. Decide whether you like me or Malcolm better and choose the walk accordingly. ;)

    Seriously, though, anyone who's down as 'going' for both walks please dump one of them. That way someone from the waiting list can get on and book accommodation, which may not be straightforward.

    September 11, 2011

  • David O.

    Barnabas, I am now in Malcolm's Five Sisters. Do I need to cancel with you or is there a plan to do the Saddle/Forcan one day and the five sisters on another? I will cancel from one of them to free up a space when I get a grip on how this is going to work!

    September 11, 2011

  • Guto R.

    Just checked with the Cluanie Inn - Clubhouse is available that weekend. Anyone interested in Friday and Sat night?

    September 8, 2011

  • Guto R.

    Anyone need a lift up?? I cd take car. How about Ice Factor on Sunday??

    September 5, 2011

  • Graeme

    Arghh, conflict ahead, two good walks on the same day. Nobody doing anything on the Sunday then?

    September 5, 2011

  • A former member
    A former member

    Wow! That filled fairly fast. Worth joining the waiting list, though, as we're hoping to increase the group size in a week or so.

    September 5, 2011

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