Colin's Munros


Knight's Peak (KP), Sgurr nan Gillean & Sgurr na h'Uamha; 11th July 2005

Route: 1380m = 4535' ascent, 8.6 miles, 8.6 hrs.

The end of Pinnacle Ridge and Am Basteir The gully above the Tourist path leading to Knight's Peak. The S face of Knight's Peak above the col. The S face of Knight's Peak above the col. The north ridge of Sgurr nan Gillean from Knight's Peak. The horizontal path from the north ridge of 
Sgurr nan Gillean round to its west ridge. The west end of the path on the NW face of Sgurr nan Gillean. Am Basteir and Bruach na Frithe from Sgurr nan Gillean. Am Basteir and Bruach na Frithe from Sgurr nan Gillean. The eye on the west ridge of Sgurr nan Gillean. Looking south from Sgurr nan Gillean to Sgurr na h-Uamha. Am Basteir and Bruach na Frithe from Sgurr nan Gillean. The final pull-up on the tourist path to Sgurr nan Gillean. The final pull-up on the tourist path to Sgurr nan Gillean. The north ridge of Sgurr na h-Uamha from Sgurr Beag. The upper half of Sgurr na h-Uamha's N ridge.

Weather: Hot, dry day with no clouds and little wind.
Comments: In 2013 the height of Knight’s Peak (“KP”) was accurately measured and found to be about 6 inches short of 3000 feet. Consequently, it was demoted from its former Munro top status. Nevertheless, it adds considerably to the interest of ascending Sgurr nan Gillean.
Route: The scrambling grades given below (S3, R1, R2 etc.) follow J. Wilson Parker's system in “Scrambles in Skye”, Cicerone Press, 1983.
I believe the easiest way up Knight’s Peak to be the route described below, via the scree and gully to the SE of the col between Knight’s Peak and Sgurr nan Gillean. It certainly has the least scrambling as it avoids Pinnacle Ridge. The only difficulty is the short chimney just below the col.
Three points on this route where the path is not so apparent are at the col on the ridge when going from KP towards Sgurr nan Gillean, at the ascent of Sgurr na h-Uamha and, if doing in reverse, on the final 100m up the SE ridge of Sgurr nan Gillean. Also, the start of the path across from the col with KP to the west ridge of Sgurr nan Gillean may not be so easy to find in cloud or in wet conditions, though it is easy to follow once found.
Some authors remark on scrambling difficulties on the tourist route where it ascends the final few yards of the SE ridge of Sgurr nan Gillean. These are relatively insignificant in dry conditions. On a dry day paths stand out more clearly, being much whiter and containing smaller stones and sand, so that route finding is easier. There are also usually polished edges and scratch marks from crampons to look out for. However, in wet conditions on ascent the difficulties of this part of the route can be intimidating as it follows solid rock and so few distinguishable features can be spotted to identify the correct route from among many dead-end possibilities. About 100m from the summit on the SE ridge there is a wall which is ascended by a gully on the left (west) side. Follow a clear path on the left of the crest almost to its end, cross rightwards back onto the crest of the ridge when possible, and then follow the ridge, exposed in places, to the summit.
Sgurr na h-Uamha and KP should only be attempted by competent scramblers.
On hot, dry days take note of the highest point at which water can be obtained from a stream. This is usually where the path is in the corrie immediately to the east of the summit of Sgurr nan Gillean, and coincides with where one leaves the tourist path for the col south of Knight’s Peak.

0930 Parking by Sligachan Hotel   20   00.0 milesNG48452978
1045 Tourist path S to burn in Choire Riabhach 2552652.4 milesNG47572640
1105 Path S to corrie rim above loch 4254403.0 milesNG47712589
1110 Path at ridge where view of pinnacle ridge starts 475490   
1120 Burn in corrie (which tourist path ascends) 5255403.15 milesNG47622528
  Ascend path W by stream in corrie to 650m, ~NG476253.
At base of cliffs, where path branches left to corrie rim,
take right fork (when level with top of Beinn Dearg
Mheadhonach) and ascend immediately under base of
cliffs, keeping left to avoid worst of (sun &) scree.
6506403.25 miles 
1225 Head W up gully to col between KP & S. nan Gillean
Grade: S3 mostly. The last 20' ascent up a chimney
onto the col is the crux of the KP ascent: R1/R2.
8758903.44 milesNG47182539
1240 N to X Knight’s Peak
The path ascends a ledge steeply on far side of col
– W side – then easy paths ziz-zag to summit. Grade S3.
9129303.47 milesNG4718025426
1245 Return S to col 875 3.5 milesNG47182539
  From col descend gully on W side about 10', then ascend
round base of small pinnacle back onto ridge. Crux of this
ascent is next 50' climb up exposed face R1/R2 to start of
path along horizontal ledge round to W ridge. (The climb
is technically easier than the chimney up to the col.)
1310 Take path SW along horizontal ledge round to W ridge
– easy – or continue S up rest of Pinnacle ridge.
E to M Sgurr nan Gillean
96410303.6 milesNG4716125301
1340 Tourist path down SE ridge as far as it goes 785 3.85 milesNG47442502
  Continue S on ridge to col 730 4.1 milesNG47622468
1355 SW to Sgurr Beag 76410604.15 milesNG47652461
1405 S to Bealach a Ghlas-choire 640 4.35 milesNG47532429
1425 S to Sgurr na h'Uamha. The path is little used, so route not
always clear. (Tricky scrambling onto ridge crest at start.)
73611604.55 milesNG47632403
1440 Return N to Bealach a Ghlas-choire 640 4.7 milesNG47532429
1455 N almost to Sgurr Beag 74512904.95 milesNG47652461
  N to col 730 5.0 milesNG47622468
1510 N to tourist path descent off ridge 78513455.2 milesNG47442502
1525 Point where path splits to KP – & re-fill water bottle
from stream where it emerges from rocks.
600 5.4 milesNG47622528
1550 Path NE/N to corrie rim above loch 425 5.8 milesNG47712589
1605 Path N to burn in Choire Riabhach 255 6.15 milesNG47572640
1635 N to bridge over Allt Dearg Beag 12013807.1 milesNG47482787
1700 NNE to bridge over Allt Dearg Mor   30 8.35 milesNG48342951
1705 N to parking by Sligachan Hotel, the “Slig”   2013808.6 milesNG48452978

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