Date of Incident
We were a well equipped fellwalking club, in good weather, ages 45-67. We had done the Buachaille Etive Mor ridge walk as described in 'Classic Walks' (page 71). The descent from Stob na Broige is then described in just one sentence, i.e. 'The descent to Allchaorunn is a long, steep mile'. In addition, there is a sketch map that points to a little bridge at NN198513 so we took a bearing, heading towards Allchaorunn and estimated 2 hours down to the road. The upper section is fine steep walking but in the bottom 1000-ft we encountered small crags: taking no chances, we circumnavigated these but then found another line of small crags. It took us over an hour to probe , left and right, to find a non-climbing route passed these two/three sets of crags. Fortunately, we had the time, good weather and energy to find a safe walking route down reaching the road 8 hours after starting from NN220520.
The information provided in 'Classic Walks' for this descent (one sentence and a sketch map) is too brief for a walking group and could be potentially dangerous in adverse mountain conditions. To describe a 3000-ft descent in just one sentence is not normal. My theory is that the author actually wrote a longer, more detailed, safe description of the descent at the end of his article but then a non-mountaineering sub-editor chopped off the bottom of his article in order to fit the words onto the page in 'Classic Walks'. If correct, then the lesson would be that editorial staff working on 'outdoor' books/magazines/websites need more training or experience to become more safety conscious.
Rescue Services Involved?
11 February 2020 at 16:19:57
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