Top 5 Scottish Winter Walks: The Falls of Glomach
Posted on Jan 08, 2016 by Alex Kendall
(Image above: nearby Eilean Donan castle draped in snow)
Thundering water amidst silent hills and remote valleys.
The Falls of Glomach is the 2nd in the series of Top 5 Scottish Winter Walks from Wilderness Guide, Alex Kendall. These walks offer stunning winter walking options for those who want to avoid the peaks and summits of Scotland’s mountains.
One of the highest waterfalls in Britain.
The Falls of Glomach are unreachable by car, so you might as well make a day of it. There are several ways of approach and I think it’s best to make it a round trip. It’s an impressive sight to approach the waterfall from above, via the wild valley of Gleann Gaorsaic.
To get the full experience of the remoteness of this valley you can start at Strath Croe. From here you will head down the Gleann Chòinneachain to the Bealach an Sgàirne. The path here is easy to follow, allowing you to admire the steep slopes on each side, both leading up to Munros.
The valley narrows as the path crosses the Allt a’ Choire Chaoll and climbs via zig-zags to the bealach. As you pass through the narrow gap, the vast remoteness of Gleann Gaorsaic opens up to you. This is my favourite moment of the walk.
After descending past the initial steep section into the valley, turn north. Be aware that there is no path from this point; you must make your way along the valley. Keep near the river, so that you can follow it along, but not too close so you end up wading through marsh!
These pathless miles offer the time to savour the silence of the hills. It can be tough going at times. But in my mind that can make it all the more rewarding when you finally near the top of the waterfall. Up there you’ll hear the quiet valley air broken by the increasing thunder of water.
Take time to explore the waterfall. There is a path that goes all the way down, and small off-shoots to get you closer to the action. I find the best place to appreciate the falls is near the top. Here you can get close to the water and feel the spray being whipped out of the falls by the wind.
To return to the car park, head up the path which ascends the hillside to the south, leading to the Bealach na Sròine. This section is quite exposed. If in any doubt about your navigation or the weather, you can reach a road by descending to the base of the waterfall and turning west along the track to reach Camas-luinie.
If you do choose to climb to the bealach, on descent the path enters the Dorusdain Wood. This is a conifer forest with wide tracks. A relaxing end to a big day. Once through the forest and over the bridge, turn right onto the path you took on the way out at the start of the walk. The road and the car park are not far from here.
Disclaimer: All walks are undertaken at your own risk, as walking can be a dangerous activity if the appropriate precautions are not taken. Wilderness Scotland does not guarantee full-accuracy of the information given and does not accept responsibility or liability. Winter walking is incredibly rewarding, but attention must be paid to your equipment even if staying at a low level, as even low level walks can be remote. It is your own responsibility to check the information with other resources, to know your own capability and to check weather conditions. Attention must be paid to your equipment; plan for the worst weather, carry a detailed map, compass, warm clothing, waterproofs, plenty of food and drink to last you the day and a head torch. If heading up high, take an ice axe and crampons and know how to use them, and always be prepared to turn back. Remember that a route description and a map are no use unless you can navigate with a map and compass. A GPS unit and the GPX route are a good back up but should be used as a guide rather than as a main navigational tool.
See other routes in this series:
More from Wilderness Walking, Winter Walking
Posted on Sep 17, 2018 by Malcolm O Reilly
Posted on Jul 30, 2018 by Neil Irvine
Posted on Apr 27, 2018 by Rupert Shanks