A sad and lonely place.
Avro Anson N9857 on Imir Fada
(Distance covered =
8.5 mile/Ascent =+678m)
Day 13 of my walking holiday in 2018. As I was out of supplies I decided to miss out the walk to an Avro Anson crashsite on Ben More Assynt I had planned for this day. Instead I headed down to Ullapool, to resupply before tackling the long drive down to the Isle of Skye in preperation for the following days walk.
As well as being out of supplies I had also ran out of steam while walking back to the car from Sandwood Bay the day before. I had passed a German Tourist who was leaving the beach the same time as me, and then, being determined to beat her back to the carpark, I had set too quick a pace and tired myself out. As I had nothing left to refuel with I basically ground to a halt exhausted about 500 yards from the finishing line and she overtook me.
After a visit to the supermarket in Ullapool I had a walk around the shops, then bought some chips to eat on a seat overlooking the harbour. The chips wern't the nicest I've ever had but the scenery where I ate them made up for that.
After I'd finished off the chips I headed back to the car, but on the way I nipped back into the supermarket and bought two 1ltr tubs of Raspberry and White Chocolate ice-cream(well they were on offer) then promptly ate both of them in the car. The result of this was I was now refuelled and full of energy again, so as it was only 12:30 and the sun was now shining I headed back up the road to Ichnadamph.
Setting off towards Ben More Assynt from Ichnadamph.
By the time I arrived back at Ichnadamph, put my boots on, sorted out some bait etc and set off walking it was 1:30pm, a very late start for me, so I was going to have to be conscious of the time and not dawdle too much.
View back down to Ichnadamph from the path to Loch Fleodach Coire.
As soon as I set off walking alongside the River Travigill from Ichnadamph I had the feeling it was going to be a very enjoyable walk and as I took a nice wee path that branched off to the left and gradually gained altutude above the Allt Poll an Droighinn burn the sun was shining and there was a nice breeze to keep away the midge. Another one of those 'Can't get better than this' moments that I love!
Lovely little path to follow towards Beinn Uidhe.
Before reaching Loch Fleodach Coire I needed to look out for another path that branched off to the right this time and headed for Loch Nan Cuaran, this path would take me pretty close to the crashsite of the Anson.
Little shelter at the junction of the paths. I thought for a moment it had wifi but the two aerials on the roof were merely broken fishing rods.
I had to take the little path on the right here.
Above and below:-Negotiating this ridge looked like it might be tricky but the nice little path knew an easy and enjoyable route over it.
Loch nan Cuaran was immediatley over the other side of the ridge and this is where the path termnated. The rest of the way to the crashsite was pathless and involved negotiating quite a few boulder fields but it wasn't too far and easy going between the boulders.
Loch nan Cuaran, the crashsite is the other side of the ridge in the distance.
I thought the crashsite might be in this area but there's still one last boulder strewn ridge to cross.
There was a feint path to follow up the side of this burn and into Imir Fada.
When I got to the top of the last ridge and onto the edge of Imir Fada I was momentarily worried that I had made a navigational error as there was no sign of the large stone cairn with a cross on top that I had seen photos of on the internet. There was a large square stone sitting on the plateau that looked out of place so I headed over to that.
The reason I couldn't see the cairn and cross was because it had been replaced by a granite block which had the crew's names engraved on it, in front of it was a circular patch of rocks where the crew lie buried. I found this to be a very sad and lonely place and there was a distinct feeling of remoteness, perhaps helped by the fact it was so late in the day.
Last restng place for the crew of Avro Anson N9857.
Above and below:-Anson wreckage on Imir Fada.
I'd set myself a deadline of 5pm to be heading back to the carpark but it was more like 7:30pm before I eventually set off back towards Loch nan Cuaran to pick up the path back to Ichnadamph.
Walking back to Loch nan Cuaran.
As I was nearly back down off the Mountain and in view of the Ichdamph Hotel I came across an old metal gate, no fence just a gate. It squeeled very loudly when I opened it, so as the wind was blowing towards the Hotel I proceeded to open and close it in such a way that it did a very good impersonation of a wolf howling. Something for the tourists staying at the hotel below to talk about!
The squeeling wolf gate.
Once back down to Ichnadamph there was just enough light left to nip along to the Churchyard to have a look at the memorial there for the Anson crew. Then it was time to head off to Skye.
Above and below:-Memorial for the crew of the Anson outside the Church at Ichnadamph.
During 2020 while up in the North of Scotland on CC20 I visited Imir Fada again with Stuart and Chloe for company, as they had not been to this site before.
View west from the ascent to Imir Fada with Loch Assynt just visible in the distance.
We encountered difficulties in trying to find somewhere to camp the night before visiting Imir Fada, including a recce to some campsites just north of Lochinver which were all fully booked. We eventually decided to camp in the carpark at Inchnadamph which was surprisingly devoid of campervans saying as there were picnic tables and a nice grassy area secreted around the corner. We soon found out why!
Approaching Loch Cuaran via the slopes of Cadha na Poite in the summer of 2020.
above and below:-views north and south from the northern end of Imir Fada.
Wreckage from Anson N9857 lies scattered in the peat groughs at the northern end of Imir Fada.