Corrour & Loch Ossian routes

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  • Corrour & Loch Ossian routes
  • Premier Icon allyharp
    Subscriber

    I’m looking for a route starting and ending at a train station that’ll take me past Corrour & Loch Ossian.

    Distance really depends upon how much time I have between trains – which I don’t know yet – but let’s say up to 30 miles.

    Kenny Wilson’s book features a loop from Roy Bridge and around Loch Ossian. I could perhaps do this route up to Corrour followed by the path to Rannoch station (which I’ve heard is bikeable – correct?)

    Or perhaps there’s a circular from Corrour? Any other options?

    druidh
    Member

    Lots of choices I’d say. e.g. you could work your way across to Dalwhinnie from Corrour. The track from Corrour to Rannoch should definitely be bikeable – I’ve walked it all (some time ago admittedly) and don’t recall any problems. Remember, that used to be the public road (the famous Road to the Isles).

    Premier Icon ton
    Subscriber

    get off the train at rannock station, take the track up past the old corrour lodge, past peters rock,to loch ossian yh.
    round to creaguaineach lodge,up over the lairig leacach,down to spean bridge for the train.
    ace route imho.

    Premier Icon allyharp
    Subscriber

    Will that route work in the opposite direction ton, or is it not worth it?

    I’m looking at doing this to break up a train journey from Mallaig to Glasgow so it’d be best if I could work my way down the line.

    TandemJeremy
    Member

    Last year we cycled from Kinlochleven up to corrour ( well a bit of a walk in the middle) Past loch Ossian then north up stathossian nearly to the road and then east alongside lochan na Earba. all double track and easy but scenic riding.

    On a previous trip cycled from Rannoch station to Loch ossian – very nice – single track but not too rough ( from memory – a few years ago)Then out to Kinlochleven Again the singletrack along the Abhainn rath was mainly a walk – on an unladen bike going west to east its ridable – but add luggage or go uphill it gets pretty hard going for that section

    stuartie_c
    Member

    how about starting in Spean Bridge? There’s a track that starts at the golf club car park right beside the station and takes you deep into Leanachan Forest from where you can cross the River Cour to link to the LRT into the Lairig Leacach. From the bothy there’s a bulldozed argo-cat track (unfurtunately) which takes you up over a col and down to the Abhain Rath at Luibeilt. The bulldozed bit doesn’t last long and you’ll get a brilliant singletrack descent to the river. Down the AR is sketchy to begin with but improves and gives some nice riding to reach Loch Treig (unless as TJ notes you’re carrying a big load). From here it’s LRT to Loch Ossian. Do a quick birl around the loch and finish at Corrour where you can have a tasty meal while you wait for the choo choo. Top day out!

    Stuartie_C’s route gets my vote as well, and the road to the isles (Corrour to Rannoch) would be pretty good in that direction (more gradual downhill on a more consistent surface) although a couple of the bits of climbing out of Loch Ossian might be a bit mucky.

    with enough time you could skip the Abhain Rath bit and circle round above kinlochleven (Luibeilt-Loch Eilde Beg/Mor-Pipeline above Kinlochleven-Ciaran Path to Loch Treig-Loch Treig-Corrour) although I’m not 100% on how rideable the pipeline bit is. That extension might turn it all into a bit of an epic, although I reckon it would be more fun to ride than the abhain rath section.

    Premier Icon allyharp
    Subscriber

    Which track near the golf club is that Stu_C?

    This road here which crosses the river at the bridge? – http://www.multimap.com/s/Pf6RjOU1

    Any idea how long the route took? If I can do it in 6 1/2 hours at a leisurely pace (with plenty of photos and hopefully a corrour/rannoch tea stop) I can get an earlier train home.

    Premier Icon ton
    Subscriber

    mine will work in the opposite direction.
    the 1st uphill up to the lairig leacach is a big pull tho…… 😀

    Premier Icon allyharp
    Subscriber

    Also, which of the 2 singletracks heading south from Loch Ossian is best to get onto the Rannoch station path – the one past Peter’s Rock or the one nearer the railway, ending near Lubnaclach?

    Premier Icon ton
    Subscriber

    peters rock one.
    and it is mostly downhill if i can remember.

    Premier Icon allyharp
    Subscriber

    Excellent, thanks ton.

    Any idea of a time from Spean Br to Corrour, or even all the way to Rannoch?

    Premier Icon ton
    Subscriber

    we did it in a day from the moor of rannoch hotel to a pub in spean bridge. we did not rush either.

    stuartie_c
    Member

    Hi Ally,

    The track I’m talking about isn’t easy to point out because the initial section doesn’t really exist on any map. I’ll try to describe it below, but if you’re unsure you could head along the road to Coire Choile Farm (near where you highlighted) and straight up the track into the Lairig Leacach.

    Detailed directions:

    From the station, head out into the Golf Course car park (depending on which platform you alight on, you might have to cross the line over the bridge). At the far end of the car park you’ll see a gate leading onto a trail. Follow this until you come to a clearing on a fire road. Bear left for about 100m and then right through a wooden fence. The path at this point starts to head back the way you have come but soon trends left and goes up the hill into the forest along the edge of a fire break. It’s a walkers trail and is signposted “Circular Route – Spean Bridge” or something like that. From memory, there’s another path at that first fire-road clearing but your one should be going up into the forest and away from the railway line.

    After about 500m you’ll come to another fire road – go straight on and just stay on the same trail for a couple of kms until you see a bridge off to the left(NN236791). Go over this and you should be on a nice trail beside the River Cour. You’ll start seeing signs for the Witch’s Trail if I remember correctly. A wee bit further and you’ll see another bridge off to the left (NN238784) which crosses the Cour and takes you up to a fire road. Up FR to a junction (NN236777), turn left and go straight on until you reach a junction with the main track into the LL from Coire Choile.

    It’s more straightforward than it sounds and it has a purity about it in that you start your day on singletrack and there is no tarmac at any point!

    Time-wise I reckon 6 1/2 hours should be plenty. The slow bits will be from LL bothy up to the high point on the path over to Meanach/Luibeilt and the slightly frustrating bit from Meanach to where the Abhain Rath path becomes more defined and rideable ( around about the waterfalls at NN284682). Depends if you aim to finish at Corrour or Rannoch (I’m have no first-hand knowledge of the route between them – over to Ton/Druidh/TJ.

    Another variation on 13th’s option to bypass Abhain Rath would be to head from Loch Eilde Mor over Meall na Cruaidhe and down to Loch Treig. Initially, a push/carry for about 3km, but well worth it for the singletrack towards Loch Trieg (although a bit soggy at Gleinn lolairean).

    Another variation on 13th’s option to bypass Abhain Rath would be to head from Loch Eilde Mor over Meall na Cruaidhe and down to Loch Treig. Initially, a push/carry for about 3km, but well worth it for the singletrack towards Loch Trieg (although a bit soggy at Gleinn lolairean).

    Oooo, good one! I’ve seen that trail and wanted to ride it, just never considered adding it to the route. Having seen and ridden bits of it, i think it would be infinitely preferable to the Abhain Rath section, or at least the section I did alongside the Abhain Rath…

    Need to memory map all this and see what the final route would come to, might be good merida marathon training…

    Premier Icon allyharp
    Subscriber

    I think given the weather this week (added to the remoteness aspect and the fact I’m riding solo) I might consider the easy to navigate Kenny Wilson route, which starts off on the estate tracks.

    Should still be a stunning ride given the scenery anyway.

    Premier Icon allyharp
    Subscriber

    I’ll go for stuartie’s route, but probably just take the farm road out of Spean Br for ease of navigation at the start.

    I see you’re suggesting descending from Lairig Leacach bothy to the Abhainn Rath by Meannanach/Luibeilt. What about the tracks further down the Lairig Leacach either side of the Allt na Lairige – are they possible alternatives?

    Short answer? No.

    Long answer, yes if you like a fair bit of hikey-bikey interspersed with some not very good riding. At least, that was my experience with the path to the south, the one on the north looked higher and more obvious but smee/glupton on here told me it was just as bad…

    Overall you would prob still save time over the longer, more rideable option, but it wouldn’t be a great deal of fun!

    Premier Icon allyharp
    Subscriber

    Holy shit, what a ride. What a nightmare of a ride!

    I thought I was well prepared for this ride – I had an alternative route planned along landrover track in Strath Ossian which I would take if the weather was really bad.

    In the morning while getting the train from Mallaig though the weather was great so I got off at Spean Bridge in sunshine and started heading for the Lairig. Just as I was climbing/walking up it started raining. Then it rained harder. Then I got a headwind.

    The bothy was great relief and a perfect opportunity to stop for lunch. I was soaked to the skin. My TNF waterproof sure ain’t waterproof enough! Whilst I was inside the rain stopped a few times before returning.

    From the bothy I had the option of whether to head up the path stuartie recommended towards Luibeilt or taking the shorter route 13 had already warned wasn’t very good! Stuartie’s route was very uphill at the start, but I’d been looking forward to the singletrack descent. The other route looked like it started off on a fine surface and was reasonably flat. With the wind the last thing I wanted was to go higher, and by this point I was having such a horrible time that I didn’t want to go anywhere but Corrour train station. And as fast as possible!

    So I took the “quick” route by the river, which seemed alright for just long enough to make turning back seem stupid. I ended up wading through bogs for the best part of 2 hours and crossing calf-deep rivers. Of course, the rain stayed off for the whole time and I even got a fair amount of sunshine. I really wish I’d taken that other path.

    One of the other parts of the ride I’d been looking forward to most was a circuit of Loch Ossian, but when I got there I could barely take in the views through the dull haze. The sun came out just long enough for some photos before coffee & cake in the station tearoom. I had originally planned to follow on to Rannoch, but I just wanted out so got the train home!

    The first bad decision of the day was going to Spean Bridge. I knew that it had been raining heavily the day before so I should have headed to Tulloch to ride the landrover tracks which (should) have been better in the wet.
    So I went to Spean Bridge so I could ride that singletrack… then didn’t even ride it! Which just means I’ll have to go all the way up the Lairig to do it again another day…

    (Pics to follow)

    Hard lines Ally!

    I think I can now appreciate those rides, taking the rough with the smooth, what doesn’t kill you etc…

    Trampus
    Member

    Well done, allyharp. Proper preparation and planning prevents piss poor performance…..if only! Look fwd to the pics!

    TandemJeremy
    Member

    13thfloormonk – Member

    Hard lines Ally!

    I think I can now appreciate those rides, taking the rough with the smooth, what doesn’t kill you etc…

    I ain’t convinced. If I never have to drag my bike thru a bog in the rain againI will be a happy man.

    Mind you ally – you could have got midgies as well

    stuartie_c
    Member

    Bummer dude!

    Still – experience is the sum of near misses.

    Premier Icon allyharp
    Subscriber

    I think I can now consider it one of those rides which you look back on as fun; but which was nothing of the sort at the time!

    Here’s a few pics anyway. More on flickr, and also some from the day before at Morar.

    Nice weather looking up the Lairig at the start:

    The path I should have taken:

    Looks like flooding by Loch Treig:

    Couldn’t see much at all as I approched Loch Ossian & Corrour station:

    But it soon cleared:

    druidh
    Member

    Great photos – thanks for sharing.

    Arisaig/Morar has to be one of my favouritist places (I got married in Arisaig you know….)

    Hard to pick a favourite, but I particularly like this one

    (could almost be the Caribbean)

    and this one

    (that just shouts “adventure starts here”)

    Premier Icon paul4stones
    Subscriber

    Get a grip man – sounds (and looks) like a cracking day out 🙂

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