Tigh Brachen

Ascent of Beinn Damph

beinn 1

Walk 18 & 19 Beinn Damph (Mountain of the Stag) (Walk 18 - 4.5 miles including return; Walk 18 & 19 combined - 8½ miles including return)
For more pictures click Ascent of Beinn Damph photo album

Starting from the bridge over the Allt Coire Roill by the Loch Torridon Inn, walk up the road about 70 yds towards Shieldaig to find the start of the path which climbs through rhododendrons. The path ascends gently along side the Allt Coire Roill, through the rhododendrons and pine trees (watch out for slippery roots if its been raining!) passing a waterfall and affording great views through the trees to Liathach. As you emerge above the tree line the path splits and you need to take the right fork in the path, which heads for the saddle of Beinn Damph. It is a good path but just as you start the climb to the saddle it disintegrates into a bit of a boggy affair, so you need to pick the best way up. It is not difficult and eventually you reach the saddle which gives wonderful views over Loch Damph.
 
Once at the saddle you have a couple of options - either to head for the summit of Beinn Damph, which is about 1.6 miles away (Walk 19), or head in the opposite direction to visit the smaller 687 mtr summit of Sgurr na Bana Mhoraire (His Lordship's Consort) which is approximately 1mile away (Walk 18). The walk to this summit presents no problems even though it includes a short narrow slanting path on a steepish slope above crags. The views over Loch Torridon out to the Isle of Skye from this flat summit are stunning on a clear day.

Back to the main saddle and the ascent of the summit of Beinn Damph begins. It is a relatively straight forward walk with the summit in view most of the time. However, the boulder fields of quartzite will give your ankles a bit of a pounding so where ever possible the respite of walking on the grassy, heather and moss patches is most welcome. The ridge leading to the summit cairn is at least 8-10ft wide so is not difficult, but this may prove different in high winds. And if you have dogs with you, watching them stand on the edge peering down the slopes on your left does make your knees go slightly weak! But once past this, the summit flattens out and from the cairn at 903 mtrs the views are awesome.

 
Left to right: Approaching the summit; summit cairn 903 mtrs; from summit looking back along Beinn Damph; Maol Chean Dearg & An Ruadh stac

Once you've taken in your fill, head back the way you came. If you have tired legs after tackling the boulders, watch out for the tree roots on the last part of the return. But the good news is, is that the pub is at the end!