This trip has quite a lot going on. Take a few minutes to read through this.
- the plan
- what to bring
- where to drive to
- how activities will work
- Trip director: Tim
- Buddy Co-ordinator: Lucas
- Lift Sharing co-ordinator: Ryan
- Venue co-ordinator: Tom Rowley / Ryan / Tim
- Lunch Marshals: Samantha, Stuart
- Gear co-ordinator: Arabe
- Climbing/Activity Co-ordinators: Adrian & Matt Bridges
- Breakfast & Lunch menu writer: Judith
- Quartermaster: Katie Allen
- Evening meal chefs: Katie & Tom, Dom & Connie, Colin, Alex, Judith, Samantha
- Breakfast Marshal: Liv, Jenna
- Breakfast Washing Up Marshal: Rachel, Olivia
- Evening Meal Washing Up Marshal: Lukasz and Rick
Everyone will weigh in to support everything else
- Keen to see what these mean? Have a read here.
Try to channel questions to one of these people directly, and then come to Tim if they can’t help.
Please be encouraged to take Lateral Flow Tests and play it safe – don’t come if you have symptoms. Let’s keep the Clan safe. <3
Many people are travelling by Minibus.
Minibus One and Minibus Alpha are leaving Manchester on Sunday morning, and returning to Manchester on Sunday evening (with a week in Skye). There are still minibus places if you decide you can’t be bothered to drive, but you need to talk to Ryan fast!
It’s a proper big 8 hour drive drive, so we recommend a properly early start 8am.
What to expect from the week
Times are all subject to change, and are mainly for illustration and to start conversation.
We’ll arrive Sunday evening – you’ll need to sort your own dinner out.
21:00 make packed lunches for tomorrow
22:00 We’ll agree some plans, have a few drinks and a giggle and go to bed.
Monday -> Saturday vague idea of a plan
We’ll have breakfast, and then head off outside.
We’ll return to the hut for food together, and drinks… and to make lunch and plans for Sunday.
|07:30||Breakfast people get up and start breakfast|
|16:00||Return to hut|
|16:10||tea and showers|
|17:30||Dinner prep start|
|22:45||Lunch material prep|
|23:45||Lunch making teardown|
We’ll have to wake up early, have breakfast together, clean and empty the hut, and head off home.
We’ll have to:
- Clear all the stuff out of the bedrooms into the vehicles.
- Clean the Bathrooms, Showers, Hall and communal areas.
- Redistribute excess food. Any excess food not taken home by someone will be binned.
- Clean the Kitchen.
- Take the bins out.
- Ensure the hut is locked and shut down.
The faster we can achieve this – the faster we can hit the road.
The hut has toilets, showers, power, bunks, good cooking facilities, fresh drinking water. It may not have signal at all on some networks. It may have WiFi. Some networks will have signal. The nearest shop is a 1.5 hour round trip. The nearest large supermarket is a 4-5 hour round trip away. We will have to bring everything with us.
What are the plans? What if the weathers bad?
There’s quite detailed suggestions below – read on.
What should I bring?
normal text: things you definitely need
italic: optional things you might like to have
- Sleeping bag (mummy style sleeping bags with a hood are best in the UK)
- Slippers? (see below)
- Earplugs and eyemask (other people can be loud, can snore and this may help you sleep better)
If you’re hoping to climb, you’ll need your own gear – there isn’t anywhere to hire it from. At a minimum – you’ll need:
- Helmet (this needs to be a climbing helmet as kayaking, snowboarding, cycling helmets are designed to protect you from different things and don’t work for climbing)
- Belay device & karabiner
- Climbing shoes
Really helpful things to have, even if you’re not leading
If you have any of these things, bring them:
- extra karabiners
- some or all of a trad rack
- half ropes
- a 50 or 60m rope
- relevant guidebooks
- Ice Axes
- Bouldering Mat
If you’re a trad leader, you should know what to bring (everything!).
The weather and time of year is important to think about, but this is the British Isles, we have to plan for all weathers at all times of year.
The hut does not have a washing machine.
- Outdoor trousers (not denim or jeans of any type)
- comfortable climbing top
- waterproof top and bottom
- an extra warm layer
- hiking boots
- thick socks for hiking in
- gloves + spare gloves
- a full change of clothes back at camp (for being around the hut)
- an extra warm layer for belaying
- buff / scarf
- swimming costume(!)
General outdoor gear
There is often a walk to any climbing, maybe even a bit of a hike. It’s good to be equipped in case we’re outside longer than expected.
- Small rucksack (25-40 litre)
- water bottle (at least 1 litre)
- spare batteries
- themos flask
- midge net / insect repellent
- first aid kit with plasters, hay fever medication, painkillers
- phone charger and cable
- book / cards / headphones
- Toothbrush & toothpaste
- all medication you need
Almost all meals are included in the trip price, and will be tailored to your dietary requirements – specifically:
- Breakfasts on Monday to Sunday
- Packed lunches on Monday to Sunday
- Evening meals on Monday to Saturday
We already have your dietary requirements from the signup form, and everyone will be catered for. If the chefs on this trip have any questions or queries, they’ll be in touch directly.
Tea & Coffee (and dairy/non-dairy milk) is included, but most other drinks are not. Bring your own drinks – it’s a 1h30 round trip drive to the nearest offlicence.
Where am I driving to?
You are headed precisely to here, but read on for a second.
Lat/Long: 57.211935, -6.288560
Postcodes are not very accurate in Glen Brittle – and there may not be signal on all networks, so we’d suggest using the link above rather than postcodes.
The memorial hut is the second building on the right after the Youth Hostel, immediately after Skye MRT and before the main farm.
Quite a lot of cars are coming, so park efficiently and make the best use of space in the carpark and give the minibuses priorities.
Be prepared to be blocked in if you’re first to arrive.
If you’re first to arrive
If you are the first one there, or likely to be – please message Ryan/Tim directly for info of how to get inside.
Where to sleep
We have the hut to ourselves. There are several bedrooms upstairs. We don’t segregate on perceived differences, put your sleeping bag in a bunk to reserve that as your place to sleep.
How Will Activities Work?
It will not be possible (or desirable) for everyone to do everything.
Everyone will need to take responsibility for making sure you find activities to do the next day.
If you’re lesser skilled, this is particularly addressed at you.
If you want to do something, but don’t have the skills for it, then you’ll need to find someone who does, and suggest it to them. Reading route descriptions, looking at maps, reading and rereading guidebooks is something for everyone to do.
When you’ve got the start of a plan…
One you’ve got the start of a plan, fill out a Clan Routecard with info like
- What you’re doing
- When you’re leaving
- How many spaces there are
- Who is going so far
- What time we should call Mountain Rescue if you’re not back by then
This lets other people see what’s happening, choose whether or not to come along or do their own thing.
Everyone should have their name down on a routecard if they’re going into the mountains, so we
When will we make plans?
We’ll make plans the night before. The big exciting days need preparation and early morning departures, so making plans on the day will not be possible.
What might be good activities or days out?
You will need to get your nose into one of the climbing guidebooks or look through UKC
- The Inn Pinn
- Amphitheatre Arete (do not do in mist)
- Pinnacle Ridge on Sgurr Nan Gillean
- Something with Basteirs Tooth
- Something on the Cioch
- Neist Point Single Pitch Cragging
There’s lots and lots on Skye – so the important bit is to figure out which to do – read a guidebook or look through UKC.
- Sgùrr a Mhadaidh and Sgùrr a Ghreadaidh
- Coire Lagan -> GSS -> Sgurr Alasdair -> Sgurr MhicConnich -> An Stac descent
- Spur near Waterpipe Gully on Sgurr an Fheadain
- Sgurr a’ Mhadaidh via Sgùrr Thuilm’s ridge
- Ridge Traverse from Sgùrr na Banachdich to Eag Dubh or An dorus descent
- Sgumain Stone Chute to Sgurr Sgumain to Sgurr Alasdair to GSS to Coire Lagan
- Literally just open Skye Scrambles
Fairly challenging, up to ~G2 scrambling. Quite a lot of ascent/descent.
Fairly sedate, but don’t complain if there’s some uphill.
- Walk along Trotternish Ridge in the north of the island. Include the Quirang for a great day!
- Take the coastal path to a viking archaeological site.
- Traverse the forested Ridge opposite the Cuillin – Beinn Stac and Beinn a Bhgradhad
- Do the long coastal Hike to Loch Coruisk and see the Loch Coruisk Hut (locked)
- Walk to the Camasunary Bothy near Elgol
- Picnic in Corrie Lagan
Great for rest days and chilling
- Talisker Brewery Tour
- Head to Rasaay by Ferry and drive to the end of Callum’s Road
- Visit Dunvegan Castle
- Drive up the road to the Quiraing
- Find the Old Man of Storr (and look it up in a climbing guide)
- Walk up the lane and swim in the Fairy Pools (can you swim through the underwater arch?)
- Camp for the night on top of Sgurr Na Stri after walking from Sligachan
- Coastal Walk near Elgol and visit Spar Cave at low tide or swim in..
- There’s some caves in the south of the Island,
- They’re quite cavery caves
- there’s also some historic Iron Mines on Rasaay.
What maps and guide books should I bring?
Various people will bring guidebooks they already have, but having more never hurts.
The best guides and maps for the Cuillin are not obvious:
Pretty much the best scrambling guidebook with lots of crag diagrams which is the only way to navigate.
Contains all the venues on Skye not in the Cuillin, including the single pitch roadside crag at Neist Point
Contains all the climbing routes in the Skye that are roped and above Grade 3.
The modern high quality guide to the Ridge Traverse. Probably one of the better, newer ones.
Probably only map of the Cuillin worth having. Still not detailed enough most of the time, and largely useless without a guidebook.
Note: OS Maps are largely pointless for anything near the Cuillin Ridge, and are only useful for hiking on the rest of the island – they simply aren’t detailed enough.
Walking Guides for the rest of Skye
What are conditions like at the moment?
The conditions at present have patches of hard snow on tops in places on some aspects.
The facebook group All Things Cuillin has regular posts.
Conditions and nvaigation
Conditions that make for particularly challenging conditions in Skye that might not be a problem elsewhere include cloud. Navigation in Skye in cloud can be impossible, extremely hard or at best, very unenjoyable. Imagine walking across a motorway whilst looking through a pingpong ball and you may understand why cloud makes things tough.
There is magnetic rock, so even if compass navigation was desirable, it’s not usually possible to trust it. Most GPS don’t include detailed maps, so for most, Cloud can render the mountains inaccessible despite otherwise favourable conditions.
Often when the Black Cuillin is miserable, the Red Cuillin (Bla Bhennin etc) has much better weather, as does the north of the island.
What weather forecasts work best?
The best forecast is the “out the window” forecast. Skye has coastal weather, and the conditions change frequently. Long term forecasts are particularly dubious. It’s not uncommon to experience 4-season days.
Got any questions? Suggestions? Not sure if something you have is suitable? Ask in the group chat and we’ll reply super quickly – always happy to clarify things.