Area: Strathyre to Strathallan
Munro: Stuc a’Chroin
Date walked: 02/11/2008
Time taken: 4 hours
Distance: 13 km
Stuc a’Chroin sits approximately 10km North of Callander closely accompanied by its slightly higher neighbour Ben Vorlich. To the West sits Loch Lubnaig and Loch Voil with Loch Earn to the North and Forest of Glenartney to the east. I imagine in the past this forest was a large area of Scots Pine, Oak, Rowan and Birch but, as with much of Scotland in the past. large areas were deforested to provide grazing for sheep and few areas of woodland remain. Many walkers join this walk with Ben Vorloch from loch Earn over the steep scramble up the North face of Stuc a Chroin. Others walk it as a single from just North of Callander.
I drove to Callander then took the small road Heading north past the Golf course and Bracklinn Falls. At approximately 4km from the A84 main road and passing a couple of metal gates there is a small parking area a couple of hundred metres before you reach Braeleny farm. I was fully dressed for this walk bearing in mind the relatively short distance to Callander so I was out the car with my backpack and on my way almost immediately. I was not feeling very good however and decided to leave a note on the inside of the windscreen detailing my walking plans for the day. The plan was to walk Stuc a Chroin but in my confused state I wrote that I was walking Ben Vorlich. I only found this out on my return so just as well I did not get into difficulties. What a numpty. The weather was fairly good and the sun was coming out. With it being the start of November I had anticipated colder weather and had some very warm winter trousers on. This was to prove to be a bad idea.
So I climbed over the gate at Braeleny farm and took the track climbing slightly for 2km to the ford crossing the Alt Breac-nic. The water was quite low and the crossing was easy enough. The track is now supposed to continue North to Arivurichardich but I found myself following a track along the water course to the dam at the reservoir. This was not a good idea. I had lost the main track and now continued over wild terrain heading North East traversing the glen below Meall Odhar in the general direction of Coire Ban and Stiol nan Tarbh.
It was a steep 400m climb to Stiol nan Tarbh and I was still feeling poorly and now I was overheating with the unseasonably warm temperature of the day. From here it got a little bit easier with 1km of easier ascent then the last 500m ascending 150m to the summit of Stuc a Chroin. I was glad to reach the summit but I felt terrible. I was sweating, light headed and felt a little bit sick. There were a few walkers on the summit and one of them remarked “you must be hot in those trousers”. With the sun shining and the ambient temperature around 10 degrees I needed no comments on my choice of attire. I didn’t stay long at the summit and I was soon heading back the way I came. I found the track to Arivurichardich which made for an easier walk on the descent. I met a couple halfway down and had a nice chat. They told me they read my note indicating I was walking Ben Vorlich. I laughed and told them that I wasn’t feeling so good today but in truth that was a stupid mistake to make. I bit them farewell and was soon back at the car and on my way home for a well-earned rest.