Dave Beer on the walk in to Coir' a' Ghrunnda from where we were to climb up onto the Cuillin Ridge.

There are many ways to traverse Skye's Cuillin Ridge. It's possible to include Blaven in the Red Cuillins but the more usual traverse is just of the Black Cuillins, from Gars-bheinn to Sgurr nan Gillean. Either direction is fine, but finishing at Sgurr nan Gillean has the advantage of a relatively quick descent to 'The Slig' - the hotel/pub at Sligachan where climbers can rehydrate on Scottish beer, always a great way to end the climbing day.

The guidebook time is 9-12 hours, but this excludes the walk-in and walk-out times, and assumes good weather and a bit of local knowledge. We had neither of those, and as it was the most popular week of the year for climbing in Skye, we knew we could expect hold-ups on the way. A decison was made to spread the traverse over two days and bivouac along the route.

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