Cuillin - Sgurr na Banachdich
Sgurr na Banachdich is a 965m summit near the middle of the Cuillin Ridge - at NG440224. It makes a good stop for lunch for those intrepids who are 'doing the ridge'. But for us mere hillwalkers it represents perhaps the best opportunity to get up and amongst it all without any need to put hand to rock. There's nothing too challenging for the vertigo sufferers either. There is only one point on the whole ascent where you can choose to look down a scary drop, and even the summit is a fairly comfortable place to perch.
The route starts at the Glen Brittle Youth Hostel, at NG409225 . A good path from here follows the left bank (right side) of the Allt a' Choire Ghreadaidh, passing beautiful waterfalls, chutes and crystal green pools along the burn. Leave this path at NG424232 to follow the Allt Coir' an Eich steeply up to the grassy bowl of the lower part of Coir' an Eich itself. The path up the burn is patchy, but it's easy to find a route up, keeping the burn on your left side. Once into the lower corrie, cross the burn to reach the back, left hand side of the grass to pick up a zig-zag path climbing steeply up the stony slope. This will take you to a small grassy patch at the root of the An Daillaid spur. From here the path continues up a slightly less steep slope, now with larger stones and boulders. Avoid drifting left on this section, where there is a big drop into Coire a' Ghreadaidh. A stony plateau at the root of Sgurr nan Gobhar is soon reached. Here the view to the south opens up, with Loch Brittle, Rum and Canna laid out before you. The broad summit dome of Sgurr na Banachdich is now clear, and several paths lead up to the top.
The summit is a great viewpoint for a big section of the ridge. Sgurr a Ghreadaidh and Sgurr Thormaid are just to the north. Sgurr Dearg is close by to the south, with the Coire Laggan peaks beyond it. The panorama over Coir'-uisg and Loch Coruisk, with Bla Bheinn beyond is a highlight too. There are ways down that add excitment to the trip, but for walkers the only good choice is to retrace the ascent route.