Cnoc Coinnich (761m)

Saturday 30th March 2019

Distance: 9.5kms - Duration: 4hrs 30min - Group Size: 14

Walk Leader - Mike

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If you have to take an enforced break from the hills for 6 months while an achilles injury repairs itself, then you couldn't hope for a more beautiful day or a finer little hill to herald your return to the mountains than Cnoc Coinnich. And, so it was, having progressed from 10 minute walks in the park to longer forest trail walking, and the customary recovery climb on Conic Hill, the time had arrived to tackle this fine hill, which itself had grown in stature since my last visit in April 2014, when it was a mere Graham, its status having been upgraded to that of a mighty Corbett in the intervening years.

In glorious sunshine we set off along the broad forest track leading up into Coilessan Glen where recent forestry activity had cleared a substantial number of trees, giving a wider panoramic view ahead towards the rugged outline of the southern ridge of The Brack. Rising gently through the forest the track finally gives way to a much narrower path which climbs steeply through the pines to reach the forest boundary and the open hillside; whereupon a small knoll provided the ideal spot for a short break to take on board some refreshments and just enjoy the sunshine.

Approaching Cnoc Coinnich from the north, trackless slopes lead to a series of steep craggy outcrops, through which a number of grassy gullies and rakes offer the means to bypass the crags and gain the upper reaches of the broad north ridge, from where it is a relatively easy climb up to the miniscule cairn which sits atop the rock slab marking the summit of this mountain. And, as is the case with many a Corbett, their height belies the extensive views they offer, especially on a day such as today when there is excellent visibility, and air clarity. Just a wonderful place to be. Although, it must be said, there was quite a chill in the air, enough that we sought the shelter offered below the summit crag, where, out of the chilly wind, we enjoyed a pleasant lunch in glorious sunshine.

Departing the summit, we made our descent down the broad northwest ridge on gently slopping, grassy slopes to join the Cowel Way as it passes on the high ground between The Brack and Cnoc Coinnich for our return to the forest boundary and thence back through the forest to our start point.

A great day, on a fine mountain - Thanks Mike, and all for your company.

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