Lindsay Boyd's Trip Reports

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Section 6 - The Southern Grampians, Glen Garry to Glen Shee

Glas Tullaichean
Glas Tullaichean
Beinn Iutharn Mhor
Beinn Iutharn Mhor
Braigh Coire Chruinn bhalgain
Braigh Coire Chruinn bhalgain
Ben Vurich
Ben Vurich

This section refers to the hills and mountains of the Southern Grampians between Glen Garry and Glen Shee and include the hills to the north of Blair Atholl and west of The Cairnwell. They cover the Corbetts, Grahams and Munros that I have climbed in this area since 2003.The Sub 2000 Marilyns climbed in this section can be viewed here.


Section 6 - Index

Corbetts Grahams Munros
A'Chaoirnich Blath Bhalg An Sgarsoch
Beinn Bhreac   An Socach
Beinn Mheadhonach   Beinn Dearg
Ben Gulabin   Beinn Iutharn Mhor
Ben Vrackie   Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain
Ben Vuirich   Carn a'Chlamain
Carn Dearg Mor   Carn a'Gheoidh
Leathan an Taobhain   Carn an Fhidhler
Maol Creag an Loch   Carn an Righ
Meallach Mhor   Carn Aosda
Morrone   Carn Bhac
    Carn Liath
    Carn nan Gabhar
    Glas Tulaichean
    The Cairnwell


Section 6 - Trip Reports

Beinn a'Ghlo

18 October 2015

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Map - OS Landranger 43. Time taken - 8 hours. Distance - 23 kilometres. Ascent - 1340 metres.

An early start from my home in Aberdeen meant it was still dark when I parked on a rough area of ground on the Monzie Road, opposite Loch Moraig, reached from just off the A9 at Blair Atoll. A few minutes later three young chaps arrived by car and were off seconds before me. As dawn arrived I walked the few metres east to the gates giving access to the vehicle track for Shinagag then along this track with some cattle nearby but far enough away not to cause any concerns. The silence was broken by the roaring of the stags and the squawking of the crows in the woods near Loch Moraig.

After nearly two kilometres, while the other walkers headed for Carn Liath, I continued along the estate track to the south of this Munro where the roaring of the stags intensified and now in daylight I was able to spot a few of them. At the junction with the track to Shinagag I continued east until I reached the walker’s path, peaty and boggy in places, which led below Beinn Bheag and onto Bealach an Fhiodha. Prior to entering the coire of the Allt Bealach an Fhiodha I left this path and walked through some long heather losing a bit of height to reach and cross the Allt Bealach an Fhiodha.

My route continued below Airgiod Bheinn across a mixture of vegetation then over the Allt Coire Lagain before I ascended Meall na h-Eilrig initially over a mixture of long heather and peat hags. On reaching the summit of this Graham Top, where there was a cool breeze, I found some shelter for a break while watching the deer on the lower slopes of Airgiod Bheinn and Carn nan Gabhar.

I then made an easy descent to the col with Carn nan Gabhar avoiding the peat bog then ascended a grassy rake, interspersed higher up with heather and boulders, to gain Carn nan Gabhar’s south west ridge. It was then a short walk to its south cairn then across rocks to the trig point and beyond the summit cairn.

Fortunately I had some views before returning along the south-west ridge as low cloud engulfed the top. On reaching the col with Airgiod Bheinn I descended by the path to Bealach an Fhiodha passing the three chaps I saw at the start on their ascent. From the bealach it was a steady climb on a zigzag path then the gradient eased as I made my way to the summit of Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain marked by a cairn although a nearby rock was apparently the highest point.

I descended south then west to the col with Carn Liath meeting a few folks going in the opposite direction. This was followed by a steady climb to Beinn Mhaol then an easy stroll round Coire na Saobhaidh to the cairn on Carn Liath where I joined a couple having their lunch. The descent of this Munro was on a scree path then low down it was across some boggy ground to reach the estate track used that morning which was retraced back to the start.

previous ascent

Carn nan Gabhar Munro sixth ascent 1121 metres
Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain Munro sixth ascent 1070 metres
Carn Liath Munro sixth ascent 976 metres

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Carn Dearg Mor

8 August 2015

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Map - OS landranger 43. Time taken - 7.5 hours. Distance - 27.25 kilometres. Ascent - 960 metres.

I left my car in the car park in Glen Feshie and walked to the end of the public road and the house at Auchlean where there were a number of abandoned cars lying about. I was surprised that the authorities at the Cairngorm National Park allowed this!

A path ran round the east side of the property then south to the Allt Garbhiach which I crossed without any problems as the water level was reasonably low. An improved path then continued south, to the east of the River Feshie, and at a point opposite the road bridge over this river I took another path that led to this structure and its crossing. On the west side of the river the path was overgrown and less obvious but I later emerged onto the tarred road that led to Glenfeshie Lodge.

Prior to reaching the property at Carnachuin I left the tarred road and walked north-west up the estate track that rose quite steadily through the pine trees. I came to a new track that headed south so decided to explore it and discovered the track led to and through an area where the trees had been cut and extracted from the hillside. I therefore left the track, initially walking up the edge of the brash, until I eventually reached the walker’s path on the north-east ridge of Carn Dearg Beag. Although the underfoot conditions were rather rough it cut out a section of the estate track reducing the distance walked.

A short climb took me to the trig point marking the summit of Carn Dearg Beag where despite the windy conditions I stopped for a break looking across Glen Feshie to the Munros, Sgor Gaoith and Mullach Clach a’Bhlair. Afterwards a short descent took me to the damp col then a long gradual ascent along a track that led to the cairn marking the summit of the Corbett, Carn Dearg Mor. This track continued to the col with Carn Dearg which I climbed before descending to the estate track to its south-east. As I descended this track a runner barely out of breath passed me going uphill then I met a couple en-route to Carn Dearg Mor.

At a junction of tracks I headed south-west towards the Corbett, Leathad an Taobhain but at the first large bend on this track I left it and initially crossed some rough vegetation before the walking became easier and I reached the summit of Sron na h-Iolaire. I thought the highest point on this Graham Top was a piece of turf with some pellets scattered on it for the grouse.

The descent of this Graham Top was pretty awful, crossing a mixture of tussocky, marshy ground and some peat hags. I reached the little used path above Slochd Beag where there were two rocky gorges. I crossed the Allt Lorgaidh then the Allt Coire Bhruic before heading for Sron Direachain again over some tussocky vegetation and bog. The cairn appeared to be the highest point on this Graham Top and here I stopped for another break with views down Glen Feshie showing the long walk out.

Afterwards I descended steeply into Glen Feshie before walking along the estate track to Glenfeshie Lodge then the tarred road to north of Carnachuin where I joined the outward route and followed it back to the car park just before the rain commenced.

previous ascent

Carn Dearg Mor Corbett third ascent 857 metres

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Glas Tulaichean and Carn Righ

18 July 2014

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Map - OS Landranger 43. Time taken - 8.5 hours. Distance - 27 kilometres. Ascent - 1430 metres.

The starting point for this ascent of the Munros, Glas Tulaichean and Carn an Righ was the Dalmunzie Hotel, over two kilometres north-west of the Spittal of Glenshee, although a sign said it was just one mile. For the privilege of parking at the Hotel there was a charge of £2.50 but if you don’t want to pay there was a hill walker’s car park midway along the road.

I set off along the farm road to Glenlochsie Farm then intended leaving it to climb Creag a’Chaise. However just above the farm I spotted some cattle on the hillside so opted to continue along the Glen Lochsie vehicle track. Once beyond a gate I left this track and followed the edge of a fence, crossing another one en-route. The going was pretty rough and in places wet but occasionally there were some animal trails through the long heather. Higher up the underfoot conditions did improve and I reached the cairn marking the summit of Creag a’Chaise.

A slight descent north led to an easy climb through heather to Glas Tulaichean’s 717 Point, apparently a Sub-Graham Top. Another short loss of height took me to below Creag Bhreac’s East Ridge, watched by deer. As I got closer they disappeared but on gaining the ridge I saw a large herd on the run below me. On the ascent of Creag Bhreac I spotted a border collie then saw its owner seated behind a rock. He was backpacking between Blair Atholl and the Spittal of Glenshee. Creag Bhreac’s summit was reached but I was undecided on the highest point of this Corbett Top.

After another short descent I came to a quad vehicle trail and walked along it, over the 824 Point, onto Glas Tulaichean’s South-East ridge. An easy climb took me to its summit trig point, the only downside being the last few metres were in the cloud, which had been floating around the higher tops, so unfortunately there were no summit views.

I headed down the north-east ridge to the 930 metres point then towards the col with Glas Tulaichean’s North Top (858 metres) before descending to the path that ran below Mam nan Carn. This rough path was followed west until at a junction of paths I took the one that ascended Carn an Righ. On this fairly easy ascent over dry peat and later some boulders I met and spoke with a sole female on her descent. In the sun I reached the summit cairn where I found some shelter from the wind for lunch.

Afterwards I returned to the point on the path below Mam nan Carn where I joined it earlier then continued along it towards Loch nan Eun, although sections weren’t too obvious. I ascended Glas Tulaichean’s North Top, a Corbett Top, descended to the outflow from Loch nan Eun, then climbed Carn a’Chlarsaich and Creag Easgaidh, both Corbett Tops. From the latter top I headed for the col with its East Top before popping up it. On my return to the col it was a rather steep descent south towards the Allt Elrig, disturbing some deer, before swinging south-west to join the vehicle track in Gleann Taitneach. After a long walk down this glen I reached the bridge over the Allt Ghlinn Thaitneich and a path on its west side led to my outward route a short distance from the Hotel.

previous ascent

Glas Tulaichean Munro sixth ascent 1051 metres
Carn an Righ Munro sixth ascent 1029 metres

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The Cairnwell and Carn Aosda

16 July 2014

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Map - OS Landranger 43. Time taken - 1.75 hours. Distance - 5.5 kilometres. Ascent - 425 metres.

The forecast was for wet and windy conditions particularly in the morning so while the others opted to wait till the afternoon to see if the conditions improved I decided to nip up to the Cairnwell Ski Centre and climb the Munros, The Cairnwell and Carn Aosda.

It was actually dry when I set off from Braemar but on driving south on the A93 I soon encountered the rain and wind. There was plenty of choice where to park it being out with the ski season so I opted to park in front of the buildings.

It was a bit of a thought to leave the comfort of the car but once I had my waterproofs on I walked round to the rear of the cafe where an old vehicle track allowed me to quickly gain some height. It later disappeared to be replaced by traces of a path as I entered the cloud base. There was no difficulty with navigation when the path came to an end as I just kept to the line of the chair lift. At its top station I turned left and followed a gravel track to the summit of The Cairnwell, marked by a large cairn topped by an old shack amongst the ski paraphernalia.

I returned to the top of the chair lift then walked along the vehicle track bounded by a ski fence making a slight diversion to climb The Cairnwell’s North Top before rejoining the track where a couple of sign posts indicated the route to Carn Aosda. The track almost went to the summit of this hill so it was only a short walk across stony ground to reach the summit cairn.

At first the descent was a bit rough as I used a ski run but the underfoot conditions soon improved and as I approached the restaurant I emerged from the cloud. A vehicle track was then followed back to the start.

previous ascent

The Cairnwell Munro sixth ascent 933 metres
Carn Aosda Munro sixth ascent 917 metres

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Beinn Iutharn Mhor

15 July 2014

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Map - OS Landranger 43. Time taken - 8 hours.
includes cycle 1.5 hours)
Distance 31 kilometres.
(includes cycle 17.5 kilometres)
Ascent - 1125 metres.
(includes cycle 320 metres)

On our third day staying in Braemar we decided to climb the Munro, Beinn Iutharn Mhor, especially as we had bikes with us. We parked in the car park at Inverey, opposite the cottages, and once geared up set off along the vehicle track on a slight incline, pushing our bikes rather than wasting energy. The track levelled out as we approached Inverey House where the cycling began but we were soon brought to a halt by a gate across the track. Beyond, a bridge gate was encountered before the cycling was unhindered although we did walk up a steeper section.

After four kilometres the vehicle track crossed the Ey Burn via a bridge before following its east bank. It was windy here and as the burn was slow moving and appeared deep we opted to stay away from the edge. A couple of kilometres further on a second bridge was crossed then the final kilometre to the ruin of Altanour Lodge where we had a break and prepared for the walk.

We continued along the vehicle track, passing an empty estate vehicle, but soon the track became a quad vehicle trail. We followed it up the side of the Alltan Odhar before crossing this stream aiming for Beinn Iutharn Mhor’s North-East Ridge. Underfoot conditions were rough with some long heather and lots of peat hags. For a hill that several thousand people had climbed there did not appear to be a single route that walkers used. Obviously folks had different ideas how to cross or avoid the peat hags.

The ridge was reached and we zigzagged our way up what was a steep climb. The gradient later eased before we headed to the North-East Top now following an obvious path which continued round the head of the corrie and to Beinn Iutharn Mhor’s summit cairn where we stopped for lunch.

Afterwards we descended south to the grassy col with Mam nan Carn then a path to the summit of this Munro Top. A change of direction had us descending north-east to the col with Beinn Iutharn Bheag followed by a steady climb to the cairn marking the summit of this Munro Top.

The fairly steep descent from this hill was through some rocks and lower down heather before crossing the Allt Beinn Iutharn. Various bits of paths and animal trails were then followed to the bridge over the Alltan Odhar then the track back to Altanour Lodge where we collected our bikes and cycled down Glen Ey to the car park.

previous ascent

Beinn Iutharn Mhor Munro sixth ascent 1045 metres

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Carn Bhac

14 July 2014

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Map - OS Landranger 43. Time taken - 6.75 hours. Distance - 25.5 kilometres. Ascent - 1010 metres.

After the previous day’s longish walk and cycle to ascend the Munros, Carn an Fhidhleir and An Sgarsoch, it was decided to have an easier day and ascend the Munro, Carn Bhac, although I would include a few Tops. We parked beside the red telephone box at Inverey, west of Braemar, walked along the road for a short distance crossing the Ey Burn, then followed the vehicle track passed Loin-a-veaich. The Estate Track, which was in reasonable condition, continued up the north sides of the Allt Cristie Mor and later the Allt Cristie Beag reaching the peaty and boggy col at 750 metres.

Just short of the col I left my two companions to make their own ascent of Carn Bhac and climbed north following a path onto the Corbett Top, Carn Liath, the summit marked by two cairns. After taking a few photos I descended to the 750 metre col then onto the 788 knoll from where I headed east crossing some peat hags before ascending the 797 Point, my second Corbett Top of the day.

I returned towards the 788 knoll bypassing it to the south-east encountering lots of peat hags. It would have been easier to re-ascend the knoll. A wet and in places boggy path was joined and followed to the summit of the 801 knoll. The route over this knoll and onto towards Geal Charn had been churned up by quad vehicles but the path attempted to avoid some of the quagmire.

On reaching the summit of Geal Charn, a Corbett Top marked by two cairns, the wind picked up. I could see my two companions approaching Carn Bhac’s South-West Top so I descended east then climbed south following the walker’s path onto this South-West Top, a Munro Top, marked by a cairn.

A short descent east was followed by a fairly easy ascent to Carn Bhac where I found my fellow walkers sheltering at the cairn. We returned towards the Munro Top, bypassed it on the north-east side and descended its north then north-east ridge as the rain commenced. A long stretch of rough ground and peat hags was crossed before the underfoot conditions improved on the ascent of the Corbett Top, Carn Damhaireach, also known as Top of the Battery. Despite the rain and wind we stopped here as I needed something to eat.

The descent of Carn Damhaireach was by the north-east ridge, easily at first but later steeper with long heather to walk through. Lower down we joined a quad vehicle trail which led to a bridge over the Allt Cristie Mor. We then re-joined the Estate Track and followed it back to the start.

previous ascent

Carn Bhac Munro sixth ascent 946 metres

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Carn an Fhidhleir and An Sgarsoch

13 July 2014

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Map - OS Landranger 43. Time taken - 10.75 hours.
(includes cycle 2.75 hours)
Distance - 28.25 kilometres.
(includes cycle 10.5 kilometres)
Ascent - 1080 metres.
(includes cycle 130 metres)

The Munros, Carn an Fhidhleir and An Sgarsoch are rather remote, located between Glen Tilt and Glen Feshie but the use of a bike can reduce the amount of walking required to reach the base of these hills.

We parked in the car park at Linn of Dee, west of Braemar, where a voluntary contribution of £2 was requested although it was free to National Trust of Scotland members. Once geared up and the bikes sorted we set off along a short section of the public road then a good quality vehicle track westwards on the north side of the River Dee. On reaching the White Bridge we crossed this river via this bridge then continued to follow the vehicle track as we headed south on the west side of the Geldie Burn.

A couple of kilometres later the track split and we continued along the side of the River Geldie which now flowed from the west. The dilapidated Red Hut was passed and beyond the track was rougher with a few small streams to cross. Around five kilometres later a ford was reached and here we abandoned our bikes.

The River Geldie was fairly low so it was easily crossed with the aid of stepping stones and from there a short walk took us to the ruin of Gledie Lodge. Here the vehicle track ended to be replaced by a good path which was followed to the Allt a’Chaorainn. At this point we left the path, crossed the burn then some boggy ground, before commencing the ascent of Carn an Fhidhleir. The north ridge was gained then an easy walk took us to the summit cairn where we stopped for lunch.

A walker’s path was followed down Carn an Fhidhleir’s south-east ridge and although it by-passed the South Top to the east I made the short ascent to the summit cairn before rejoining the others. Thereafter we soon left the path and descended directly to the col with An Sgarsoch where a few peat hags and areas of bog had to be crossed or avoided. Paths, probably animal trails, were followed through the heather as we ascended An Sgarsoch, the summit marked by a large cairn.

The other members of the group were to descend north to rejoin the path used to reach the Allt a’Chaorainn while I continued east and made the easy ascent of the ex-Munro Top, Druim Sgarsoch, although I couldn’t decide on its highest point. From there I descended into Coire an t-Seilich, crossed some wet ground, then climbed to the summit of the Graham Top, An Sgarsoch East Top, which was unmarked.

Around 900 metres to the east was another knoll shown as exactly the same height so I crossed over to it and found a few stones marking what appeared to be its highest point. The descent was then north across some wet and rough vegetation to reach the ruined Geldie Lodge. A short walk took me to the crossing of the River Geldie and my bike where I had to await the arrival of the others who apparently spent some time sitting at the summit of An Sgarsoch. On their return we cycled back to the Linn of Dee by the outward route.

previous ascent

Carn an Fhidhleir Munro sixth ascent 994 metres
An Sgarsoch Munro sixth ascent 1006 metres

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Blath Bhaig

2 June 2013

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Map - OS Landranger 43. Time taken - 2.5 hours. Distance - 7 kilometres. Ascent - 340 metres.

After my overnight camp on Deuchary Hill I decided to return home via the A924 Pitlochry to Kirkmichael Road which would enable me to stop off and climb the Graham, Blath Bhaig. I parked on the large area of rough ground beside the radio mast at the highpoint on the road. It appeared that this area was also a rest point for many of the motor cyclists who were out this fine Sunday morning.

I set off along the track to the mast. Beyond, there was an All Terrain Vehicle Track which was initially wet and boggy in sections but it was easier to follow than crossing the heathery hillside. As height was gained the track became drier and made for Dalnacarn Craig. Here there were good views north to Ben Vrackie, Beinn a’Ghlo and Ben Vuirich. The track continued south to a gate in the fence where I left it and followed marks in the heather which ran along the side of the fence leading to Blath Bhaig’s West Top. There was then a bit of a drop before I took a shortcut but encountered some knee deep heather before climbing to the high point on Blath Bhaig, marked by a cairn and fence post.

From this summit I was able to see where I had camped and after taking a few photos returned by the ascent route although I stuck to the ridge rather than trying to take the short cut through the heather.

previous ascent

Blath Bhaig Graham second ascent 641 metres

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Ben Gulabin

1 June 2013

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Map - OS Landranger 43. Time taken - 2 hours. Distance - 7.25 metres. Ascent - 470 metres.

It looked a reasonable weather forecast for the weekend with only a few showers on the Saturday afternoon which would clear away. I fancied a summit camp once the showers passed through and a plan was hatched to climb a couple of hills on the Saturday morning then wait for the showers to clear before setting off for my planned camping spot.

Leaving my home in Aberdeen I made good progress on the drive west on the A93 until approaching Braemar where the traffic was heavier than normal. Folks were maybe making the most of a good forecast. Once beyond Braemar and now travelling south, still on the A93, there were lots of old sport cars headed in the opposite direction or stopped in lay-bys, obviously some kind of rally. In Gleann Beag, around one and half kilometres north of the Spittal of Glen Shee, I parked on the west side of the road beside the gate leading to a vehicle track. There was space for at least a couple of vehicles without blocking the entrance, although I had the area to myself.

I set off north along the track gradually gaining some height. When there was no traffic sound there was lots of bird noises coming from the marshes around the Allt a’Ghlinne Bhig. A Meadow Pipit flew out from the vegetation at the side of the track. Its nest contained four eggs. Maybe not the best of locations for its nest! The track later swung round to the north-west, forded the Allt a’Charnaich before briefly steepening.

At the bealach between Ben Gulabin and Creagan Bheithe I left this track and followed another one which was stony and rough and replaced the ATV track that existed on my previous visit. It led to the col between Ben Gulabin and its South-East Top then it was an easy stroll to the summit where I thought the rock to the north of the cairn, marked by a couple of pebbles, was slightly higher.

There were some good views of the surrounding mountains and after a short break sheltering from a cool breeze I returned by the upward route.

previous ascent

Ben Gulabin Corbett third ascent 806 metres

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An Socach

24 November 2012

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Map - OS Landranger 43. Time taken - 7.5 hours. Distance - 21.5 kilometres. Ascent - 920 metres.

I parked at the side of the A93 Braemar to Blairgowrie Road at the north end of the small forest where the Baddock and Cairnwell Burns merged. A locked deer gate was crossed to gain the vehicle track that ran along the edge of the forest. I came to the bridge marked on my map and was pleased to see it still existed and was crossable. Once over this wooden construction the track entered the forest and passed the house at Coirenalarig. Not far beyond this ruin I emerged from the forest and followed an ATV track up the grassy hillside beside the Allt Coire na Lairige.

It was a lovely crisp morning and on approaching Coire na Lairige I clambered south through some deep heather while the deer climbed out of the coire on the opposite side. Later the gradient relented and the walking became easy over snow covered heath. This led to just south of the col between Carn Ghriogair and Creag a’Mhadaidh where I could now see my first target hill of the day, still over a kilometre away. The direct route to this hill involved descending into a small corrie but I chose to maintain height and wandered round the top of the corrie through some deep heather before climbing to the summit of the Corbett Top, Sgor Mor North Top. Here I had views of the hills I had climbed a few weeks earlier, including the Corbett, Morrone, although the earlier sun had faded to high cloud with an occasional glimpse of the sun.

I descended south then climbed over Carn Ghriogair to reach the cairn marking the summit of Sgor Mor, a Corbett Top and Hump. The descent off this hill involved heading south-west avoiding some stones to reach the col with the unnamed 855 metre knoll. I bypassed this knoll to the north again walking through deep heather. This took me to the stony south ridge of Creag an Fhuathais and to its summit cairn, my third Corbett Top of the day.

It was then back along the ridge, this time over the 855 metre knoll, to the snow covered path leading to the East Top of An Socach, a Munro Top. From here I headed south-west then west as low cloud engulfed the area. I spotted a number of folks on the hill that day including some on the Munro, An Socach, but never actually met anyone. The final stretch to the top of An Socach was rather stony and slippery but eventually I reached the summit as the cloud briefly cleared to allow me some views. In fact there were two cairns, one a shelter filled with snow, but I couldn’t tell which marked the highest point.

After lunch at the summit sheltering from a cold breeze I returned to the col with the Munro Top, but rather than re-ascending this hill, I traversed below it disturbing more grouse, mountain hares in their white or grey coats, and spotted a family of ptarmigan. I emerged from the cloud base walking through more deep heather and areas of boulders with a light covering of snow which made crossing them awkward. I located the icy path to the south of Coire Fhearneasg and followed its edge through heather and lower down frozen bog to reach the vehicle track in Glen Baddoch. The Allt Coire Fhearneasg was crossed and as dusk fell I followed this track to the house at Baddock, which was occupied, then to the A93 and the short road walk to the car.

previous ascent

An Socach Corbett sixth ascent 944 metres

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Morrone

11 November 2012

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Map - OS Landranger 43. Time taken - 5 hours. Distance - 13.75 kilometres. Ascent - 740 metres.

On my previous visits to the Corbett, Morrone, also known as Morven, I ascended it from the village of Braemar using the path that went all the way to the summit. On this occasion I was looking for a different approach and decided to start from the Linn of Corriemulzie, to the west of Braemar, on the Linn of Dee Road. This area, between Glen Ey and Morrone, I hadn’t visited before.

It was a bright morning when I parked on the verge just east of the bridge over the Corriemulzie Burn then followed a vehicle track until it entered the forest. Here I kept to the open ground and followed the edge of the forest fence passed an old dam. I later rejoined the vehicle track before it crossed the Corriemulzie Burn by a wooden bridge.

I soon left this track, crossed an unnamed stream, and followed animal trails as I made my way onto the north ridge of Tom Anthon, a Graham Top, then to its summit cairn. There was a cold breeze here and the earlier glimpses of the sun were now infrequent. The rocky steep south-east face of Tom Anthon was avoided as I descended to Glac Anthon, the bealach between Tom Anthon and Carn Mor, where there was an ATV track and some wet ground.

The ascent of Carn Mor, also a Graham Top, was initially quite steep but the gradient eased as I gained height and headed to the summit cairn where I had some good views. The loss of height on Carn Mor’s south-east ridge was very gradual but with sections of bog to avoid. I was thinking the area can’t see many visitors when I saw a few boot-prints in the peat and shortly thereafter spotted three figures on the summit of Carn na Drochaide.

I climbed onto the west ridge of Carn na Drochaide and headed towards its summit meeting the folks I had spotted earlier. They told me that there was a chap ahead of me and I later saw him walking along the north ridge of Carn na Drochaide. I reached the summit of this Corbett Top before also heading along its north ridge later noting that there was a couple behind me. I don’t know where they came from and never saw them again but I definitely didn’t have these hills to myself as originally thought.

After a slight loss of height I reached the vehicle track that runs from Glen Clunie to the top of Morrone. I followed this track to the summit where as well as a communications tower and a couple of buildings there was a trig point and large cairn. I had lunch at the side of one of these buildings sheltering from a cold breeze and speaking to a couple who had ascended by the hill path.

Once lunch was over I descended south-west, initially quite steeply, through heather of various lengths as I worked my way round the head of Coire Allt a’Chlair and below Coire nam Freumh. This took me back to the trees beside the Corriemulzie Burn where on this occasion I used the track through the forest. There had been a lot of shooting going on and on exiting the forest I saw three chaps beside the burn clay pigeon shooting. It was then a short stroll to my car.

previous ascent

Morrone Corbett third ascent 859 metres

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Carn a'Chlamain

10 October 2010

photos taken on walk

Map - OS Landranger 43. Time:
Cycle - 2.25 hours.
Walk - 5 hours.
Distance:
Cycle - 18.5 kilometres.
Walk - 11.5 kilometres.
Ascent:
Cycle: 465 metres.
Walk: 710 metres.

This walk gave me the opportunity to try out my new hybrid bike as the Munro, Carn a’Chlamain, was a long way from any public road and the vehicle track up Glen Tilt had a good surface.

The car park at the Old Bridge of Tilt, just north of Blair Atholl, was my starting point. I cycled up the track along the west side of the River Tilt. The track later crossed to the east side, at Cumhann-leum Bridge then passed several habitations before at Gaw’s Bridge, just beyond Marble Lodge, reverted back to the west side of the river. I continued as far as the property at Clachghlas where I left my bike locked to the fence.

Above Clachghlas I climbed onto and walked up a vehicle track that headed westwards before swinging north-east up Faire Clach-ghlais. The track was quite rough in places but enthusiastic mountain bikers could probably cycle it. The stags on the east side of the glen were in good voice as the rut was in progress.

The track passed through an area of rock before entering Grianan Mor. It was then a short climb to the summit cairn of Carn a’Chlamain where I had reasonable views of the surrounding mountains as the earlier cloud had broken up and the sun was out.

I had previously marked on my map Carn a’Chlamain’s North Top as a Munro Top so I strolled across to it where I had my lunch. Afterwards I returned to my bike by the upward route and cycled down Glen Tilt and back to the Old Bridge of Tilt Car Park.

On my return home I discovered the North Top was no longer a Munro Top having been deleted from this list.

previous ascent

Carn a'Chlamain Munro fifth ascent 963 metres

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Beinn Dearg

18 September 2010

photos taken on walk

Map - OS Landranger 43. Time taken 7.75 hours. Distance - 29.5 kilometres. Ascent - 1350 metres.

The Atholl Beinn Dearg is a long way from any public road and with approach routes along estate tracks a bike would be useful. However my bike wasn’t roadworthy so it was ‘Shanks’s Pony’ there and back which gave me the opportunity to return by an alternative route.

I parked in the free car park opposite East Lodge, Old Bridge of Tilt, which is just north of Blair Atholl. I checked the notice board there and was pleased to discover that stalking was taking place to the east of Beinn a’Ghlo and not in the vicinity of Beinn Dearg.

Once geared up I walked along the tarred road towards Old Blair and at the crossroads took a right passed Bailanloan and Blairuachdar Farms to Blairuachdar Wood. The vehicle track passed above the Jubilee Shooting Range with the constant noise of shots ringing out. It appeared that there was a shooting competition on going. Beyond this Range I continued through another couple of deer gates which led to the open hillside where there was a bit of a breeze, but at least it would keep the midges at bay.

The track followed the west side of the Allt Slanaidh before crossing to the east bank via a ford. Here I encountered the first light shower of the day as the cloud lowered. I made a slight diversion to climb the Graham Top, Carn Mor Dearg, which involved a relatively short and easy climb to the summit cairn, where I had views back to Ben Vrackie.

I returned to the vehicle track which climbed over the west shoulder of Beinn a’Chat before descending to the Allt Sheicheachan where it joined the westerly approach route. I followed the path, which initially zig zagged, up Beinn Dearg to a small cairn at 800 metres. A short flat section of wet and boggy ground was crossed before a climb to the cairn on the small knoll south of Beinn Dearg. It was then a short walk and climb to the summit trig point.

As I arrived at the summit I was joined by three chaps from my home town of Aberdeen who had ascended from the west. The cloud was floating around the top so there were only very brief views. The cairn surrounding the trig point afforded us some shelter from a cool breeze to eat lunch.

Afterwards I returned to the cairn at 800 metres where I left the path and commenced the ascent of Beinn a’Chait, a Corbett Top. It was on this ascent I encountered the heaviest shower of the day which probably lasted for around ten minutes. I reached the summit cairn as the cloud began to lift clear of some of the surrounding mountains. The descent was through heather to the bealach with Elrig where some peat hags and bog had to be avoided. I joined an old stalker’s path for a short distance before I made the easy ascent to the Graham Top, Elrig.

Here I had some reasonable views of the Corbett, Beinn Mheadhonach and the Munros, Carn a’Chlamain and Beinn a’Ghlo. After a short break I descended west to the track I had used earlier that day and followed it back to the start.

Lots of grouse and ptarmigan took flight during my walk and on my return a herd of deer jumped the fence and entered the forest. I did see an Estate Land Rover on my ascent but not the occupants. On arriving at the summit of Beinn Dearg I did hear a shot away to the north, possibly on another estate.

previous ascent

Beinn Dearg Munro fifth ascent 1008 metres

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Beinn a'Ghlo

7 and 8 August 2010

photos taken on walk

Map - OS Landranger 43. Time:
Day one - 3.25 hours.
Day two - 4.75 hours.
Distance:
Day one - 8.5 kilometres.
Day two - 14.5 kilometres.
Ascent-
Day one - 995 metres.
Day two - 790 metres.

I decided to head for the Beinn a’Ghlo group of Munros and camp high up, hoping for a sunset and sunrise but unfortunately I got neither.

It was late afternoon when I drove along the Blair Atholl to Monzie road and parked beside the cattle grid opposite Loch Moraig, as a sign indicated that there was no parking beyond this point, which I was aware of from previous visits. While putting my gear together the local farmer approached and chatted for a while. He was off for a swim in Loch Moraig.

Once geared up I walked the short distance to the start of the track for Glen Girnaig where there was a new wicket gate. I followed this track, passing close to some cows and their calves, to a couple of old huts, one of which had collapsed. Several folks were returning after their day out on the hill.

At the huts I left the track and crossed some boggy ground before ascending a steep path which consisted of lots of loose stones. It was warm work but eventually I reached the summit cairn and trig point of the Munro, Carn Liath, where I had good views of Loch Moraig, Ben Vrackie and the other two Beinn a’Ghlo Munros.

My plan was to camp around the summit of the next Munro, Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain, so I descended Carn Liath’s North-West Ridge before making a slight ascent to Beinn Mhaol. I then continued on the descent to reach the col between Beinn Mhaol and Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain where I needed to collect water for my evening meal. I therefore made a slight diversion and descent to the Allt Coire Chruim to collect the required water before returning to the col.

It was then a steady climb to the summit cairn of Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain. The earlier bright and on occasions sunny conditions had dulled and it was a bit windy, but at least there would be no midge problem.

A slightly sheltered area just off the summit was found to pitch my tent with views across to Carn Liath. Tea was cooked and eaten but unfortunately there was too much high cloud for a sunset. I settled for an early night although the tent was buffeted by the wind, which died down during the night.

I woke early and decided to pop over to the third Munro of the group, Carn nan Gabhar, before breakfast. On leaving my tent there were some deer in the close proximity which ran off. I walked over to a small knoll and spotted several herds of deer in the area. From this knoll I descended to Bealach an Fhiodha, following a path, which continued to the col between Airgiod Bheinn and Carn nan Gabhar.

From this col it was an easy ascent to a large cairn on Carn nan Gabhar, which was not the summit, neither was the trig point beyond. More rocky ground was crossed to reach the actual summit, which was a cairn north of the trig point. The views, particularly of the Glen Shee Hills, were rather hazy with some cloud around their tops. After a few minutes here I returned to my tent arriving there just after the mountains became engulfed in cloud.

It was now time for breakfast before I packed my gear and headed back to my car reversing the previous day’s route. I was well down Carn Liath when I emerged from the cloud and by that time I had met several walkers on their ascent. In fact I lost count of the number of folks ascending Carn Liath that morning but I thought it was in excess of 25. No wonder the path was eroded!

previous ascent

Carn Liath Munro fifth ascent 975 metres
Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain Munro fifth ascent 1070 metres
Carn nan Gabhar Munro fifth ascent 1129 metres

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The Cairnwell, Carn a'Gheoidh and Carn Aosda

26 October 2008

photos taken on walk

Map - OS Landranger 43. Time taken - 5.5 hours. Distance - 15 kilometres. Ascent - 820 metres.

The plan was to head north for the weekend but with a forecast of hurricane force winds on the Saturday, with gusts of up to 120mph, I decided to cancel that idea. With a less windy day forecast for the Sunday I headed for Glen Shee, south of Braemar, to climb The Cairnwell, Carn a'Gheoidh and Carn Aosda, where I hadn't been since 1999, so I was due a return visit.

I parked beside the Cairnwell Ski Centre at the top of Glen Shee. The area was rather deserted with everything closed and only a few cars crossing the pass on the A93. As I prepared to set off, the first of several frequent snow showers commenced and it was windy enough to rock my car.

I went to the rear of the Ski Centre and followed a vehicle track and paths towards The Cairnwell with all the skiing paraphernalia. This I can accept as it is a Ski Centre but all the old pieces of cable wire and broken items lying on the mountainside is unacceptable and in my opinion should be removed. The only present surprise was sixteen ptarmigan feeding on the hillside, as can be seen from my photograph. I have never come across so many ptarmigan in a single group before. The summit of The Cairnwell was reached where it was very windy. There are several constructions on the summit but it is an absolute tip with loads of old building material lying around.

The north-west ridge of The Cairnwell was followed until I was able to swing round towards Carn nan Sac. I put on my goggles as the wind and snow were stinging my eyes. I spotted a mountain hare, one of several I saw that day, as I headed away from the ski centre onto more interesting terrain. Once at Carn nan Sac it was a short descent before the climb to the second Munro of the day, Carn a'Gheoidh. However the cloud was down at this time as another snow shower passed through, so I continued to a second smaller cairn before descending to the col with Carn Bheinn where more mountain hares were seen. From here I climbed to the summit of the Munro Top, Carn Bheinn, which was the most impressive of the four mountains I climbed that day, with views of Glas Tulaichean, Carn Righ and Beinn Iutharn Mor. I could hear the roar of the stags and a couple of deer crossed the ridge between Carn Bheinn and Creag Dallaig.

I found shelter for lunch but when the next snow shower started I headed back to Carn a'Gheoidh disturbing three ptarmigan. A short time later another three ptarmigan, flew off but they could easily have been the same birds. The views from the summit of Carn a'Gheoidh were now clear and I headed back to The Cairnwell/Carn Aosda ridge on a walker's path, by-passing Carn nan Sac. From the ridge I followed a rough track to Carn Aosda spotting another ptarmigan and mountain hare.

It was rather windy on the summit of Carn Aosda so I didn't stay long before I walked back along the ridge and down towards another track which took me to the Ski Centre car park. On this descent there was still more rubbish lying around, broken pieces of plastic and even a broken 'T' bar. It must be time for the Ski Centre to organise a clean up!

I made it back to the car just in time as the area encountered a fairly heavy snow shower with poor visibility which didn't clear until I approached Braemar on my return journey home.

The Cairnwell Munro fifth ascent 933 metres
Carn a'Gheoidh Munro seventh ascent 975 metres
Carn Aosda Munro fifth ascent 917 metres

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An Socach

6 January 2008

photos taken on walk

Time taken - 6 hours. Distance - 15 kilometres. Ascent - 810 metres.

I had neglected this area during the past few years for mountains further west so it was nice to return to Glen Cluanie, which was just under ninety minutes drive from my home, to re-ascend a hill I first climbed many years ago.

In fact I wasn't certain where in Glens Cluanie or Shee I was going as I was waiting till I arrived in the area to check out the snow conditions. They were in fact variable with some bare patches, icy crusts which wouldn't hold my weight, some drifts, fresh cornices and a thin covering of wind blown snow on the plateau.

I parked beside the small forest plantation on the A93 Braemar to Perth road at the entrance to the road leading to the unoccupied property at Baddoch. I walked along this vehicle track, avoiding some drifting snow to this old building and crossed the Baddoch Burn by a bridge, which was a bit unstable.

This was a new route for me as I would normally go further up the Baddoch Burn before climbing onto An Socach but this route looked rather inviting from the A93, due to the snow. I set off up the north-east ridge of Sgur Mor with traces of a path winding its way through the heather. Visibility was good at this time and other walkers in front had made a route through sections of snow. Height was gained fairly rapidly with views back down to Baddoch and across the A93 to Creag nan Gabhar.

I reached the summit of Sgor Mor, classed as a Corbett Top, where it was cold and windy with some low cloud floating around so I descended to the bealach with the 855 point before climbing to its small cairn. From here I had a view into Glen Ey but the low swirling cloud curtailed views of the hills further west.

A short descent followed before I climbed through some drifting snow to An Socach's East Top, where the views were now restricted by cloud. I continued along An Socach's windswept ridge through some spin drift before reaching its highest point. I still had no views and it was cold and windy so I returned to the East Top with the sun trying to break through the cloud giving an orange glare.

At the East Top I descended its east ridge, through some deep snow and spotted a herd of deer. I reached the large cairn at Socach Mor and beyond that it was rather icy in places with evidence of deer foraging for food.

Once down at the Baddoch Burn I followed the vehicle track, with its covering of ice and snow, back to the start on the A93.

An Socach Munro fifth ascent 944 metres

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An Dun and A'Chaoirnich

28 - 29 April 2007

photos taken on walk

Time taken:
Day 1 - one hour.
Day 2 - 4.25 hours plus 40 minutes cycling.
Distance:
Day 1 - 8.5 kilometres.
Day 2 - 17 kilometres.
Ascent -
Day 1 - 145 metres.
Day 2 - 770 metres.

The starting point for this outing was the A9 Perth to Inverness Road at the junction with the unclassified road to Trinafour. This is on the west side of a section of dual carriageway near to Dalnacardoch Lodge. Parking is available on this unclassified road but extreme care is required crossing this very fast section of the A9 on foot or on a bike.

The weather forecast was for a pleasant weekend although the east coast was to be plagued with haar so I decided on an overnight trip further west to climb these two Corbetts.

It was early Saturday evening when I set off up the vehicle track to the deserted Stronphadruig Lodge where I found a suitable spot to pitch my tent looking north towards the next day's hills.

Low cloud shrouded the hills when I woke in the morning but during breakfast it slowly disappeared and I left my tent and set off up the steep north ridge of An Dun. After an hour I was on the summit in the sun taking in the views of the surrounding mountains.

I descended the steep south ridge of An Dun which was relatively easy as visibility was perfect and I could pick the most suitable route. En route I disturbed some mountain hares and grouse. Once on the valley floor I crossed the Allt Loch an Duin, which was very low, and climbed steeply up the west side of A'Chaoirnich. The heather on the hillside had been burnt by the estate staff so the going was a lot easier than on my previous expedition with lots of animal trails to follow to gain height.

Eventually the going became very easy as I approached the summit of A'Chaoirnich at the same time as another walker who was doing the circuit in the opposite direction. Again in the sun there were some good views but there was now a cool breeze so I headed over to Creag an Loch and commenced the descent back to my tent at Stronphadruig Lodge. I did take what I thought was a short cut but it was very steep and awkward in heather and boulders so descending to the bealach above Stronphadruig Lodge, which I did last time, is much preferred.

Once back at the tent I had a brew and my lunch sitting in the sun before I packed up my gear and cycled back down the glen after a pleasant outing.

A'Chaoirnich has also been referred to Maol Creag an Loch but the OS map shows it as A'Chaoirnich and Creag an Loch as its south ridge.

previous ascent

An Dun Corbett second ascent 827 metres
A'Chaoirnich Corbett second ascent 875 metres

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Meallach Mhor and Leathad an Taobhain

7 - 8 April 2007

photos taken on walk

Time taken:
Day One - 4.5 hours.
Day Two - 9.75 hours.
Distance:
Day One - 15 kilometres.
Day Two - 34 kilometres.
Ascent:
Day One - 520 metres.
Day Two - 720 metres.

My plan was for a overnight trip to climb the rather remote Corbetts, Meallach Mhor and Leathad an Taobhain. I had climbed these hills on a backpacking trip a few years ago from Glen Feshie and included Carn Dearg Mhor. On this occasion I was looking for a different approach and having never visited Glen Tromie I decided to use this Glen for the start of this walk.

I arrived at Tromie Bridge on the B970 a few miles out of Kingusie but there were no parking facilities in the immediately vicinity. However I found a small parking area within the woods on the Drumguish road about 300 metres north of the bridge.

I walked back to Tromie Bridge and took the signposted route up the Glen. The initial section of the road is rough which gives a false impression of the road conditions. After a few hundred metres the road surface became tar macadamised and improved the further south I walked.

It was a pleasant Spring afternoon with the sun was shining as I walked up Glen Tromie. I was passed by numerous cyclists, even some family groups, who were headed in the opposite direction. I presumed that some had cycled from Dalnacardoch on the A9, through the Gaick Pass. Unlike several Scottish Glens with their derelict houses most of Glen Tromie's houses appeared occupied. In fact a new house had been constructed just beyond Bhran Cottage, which was one of the few derelict cottages I saw.

At this new house I walked along the north side of the Allt Bhran on what was shown on the map as a path. However, as will be seen later, on the ground a lot of these paths weren't always obvious nor in fact did they exist. After nearly two kilometres I found a suitable site to pitch my tent beside the Allt Bhran which was fairly low due to the recent dry spell.

Once the tent was erected I made a direct ascent on Meallach Mhor disturbing some deer, more grouse and a mountain hare which had almost lost it's winter coat. It was cold and windy on the summit so once I had taken a few photographs I headed back to my tent looking forward to my evening meal.

Oh the disappointment when I discovered a problem with my stove. It would not connect to my gas canister for some reason so it was a cold snack and no coffee and an early night. (I still haven't fathomed out the reason for the problem with my stove.)

The next morning it was windy and colder as I packed my gear and continued east on an indistinct path to the Minigaig Pass. The lower section of this path also wasn't obvious as it was overgrown with heather but I was aware of this from my previous visit. Here a met a couple of ladies who had been camping and were headed in the opposite direction.

The Minigag Pass was a steady climb up the west side of Leathad an Taobhain but unfortunately had also been used by an ATV causing some boggy sections. On reaching the south ridge of its 902 point it was a short climb to to the summit trig point.

It was very windy here so I didn't hang around to take in the views but headed down the north ridge before finding the path that climbed over the Corbett Top Meall an Uillt Chreagaich and onto a vehicle track which had recently been improved. It was a steep descent and I met a couple walking towards me and a chap on a mountain bike who complained that the wind had almost blown him off his bike. Good on him cycling up such a steep gradient as I wouldn't have managed but at least he would reap the benefit on his return, despite the wind.

West of Lochan an t-Sluic the track split, east towards Glen Feshie and west below the Corbett Carn Dearg Mor, which I had climbed twice. I also had been in Glen Feshie on numerous occasions so I decided to follow the westerly track and here got very close to another mountain hare whose coat was still rather white, in this virtually snowless area.

From the high point on this track it was a gradual descent to the path leading into Gleann Chomhraig. Well the map shows a path all the way down the glen. Initially there is a faint trace of a path down the side of the All an Dubh-chadha but it soon disappeared. The next seven kilometres were virtually pathless with around four kilometres through some long heather interspersed with bog giving one of the most unpleasant walking experiences I have had for a while. I won't be using this glen again and advise any fellow walkers to avoid it unless they like long heather and bog. The only plus side, if there was one, was that it had been relatively dry recently so the bog could have been a lot worse. Even the birds have succumbed here as lots of evidence of birds falling foul of prey.

Once in the lower regions of Gleann Chomhraig I headed over and joined the vehicle track that took me through a forest to Killiehuntly Farm in Glen Tromie and a short walk back to the car.

A word of warning for anyone walking in this area is that some of the paths shown on the map are non-existent and others are very indistinct probably due to lack of use. However the vehicle tracks are mostly in an excellent state of repair and are suitable for using a mountain bike if you have the energy and power to cycle uphill. Me I have to get off on the inclines as I am not a cyclist.

previous ascent

Meallach Mhor Corbett second ascent 769 metres
Leathad an Taobhain Corbett second ascent 912 metres

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Carn a'Chlamain

15 March 2007

photos taken on walk

Time taken:
Cycle - 90 minutes.
Walk - 4 hours.
Distance:
Cycle - 18 kilometres.
Walk 10 kilometres.
Ascent:
Cycle - 160 metres.
Walk 700 metres.

The starting point for this ascent was the car park just east of the Old Bridge of Tilt on the single track road to Old Blair from Blair Atholl. There is ample car parking spaces here as it is also utilised for nearby forest walks.

We crossed the road and cycled up the signposted route for Glen Tilt for around nine kilometres. Well Shona cycled most of the route but I took the easy option on the inclines and pushed my cycle uphill. The track was in excellent condition as it is also used by vehicles accessing the houses in the Glen.

In just under an hour we reached the house at Clachghlas and left the cycles here before climbing steeply onto the vehicle track that crossed the hillside in a westerly direction. The map shows this as a path but is actually a fairly substantial vehicle track and we used it to gain height and reach Carn a'Chlamain's south-westerly ridge.

The track splits here and we took the vehicle track that headed up the south-westerly ridge although this track is not shown on the map. It was windy on the ridge with occasional rain showers but higher up this changed to brief hail and snow showers but at least at times we had some good views of the surrounding mountains. The vehicle track almost reached the summit of Carn a'Chlamain and all that was left was a short climb over some rocky terrain to the summit cairn. Here it was very blowy as we took in the views before commencing the descent.

Shortly after leaving the summit I disturbed a ptarmigan which had been camouflaged in a small snow field. Lower down we found some shelter for lunch before continuing down the ridge and back to our cycles.

The cycle back down Glen Tilt took around 30 minutes with the enjoyment of freewheeling on the downhill sections. Without the use of the cycles another two hours should be added to the walking time.

Carn a'Chlamain Munro fourth ascent 963 metres

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Carn an Fhidhleir and An Sgarsoch

23 August 2006

photos taken on walk

Time taken: 12 hours. Distance 42 kilometres. Ascent: 940 metres.

These two mountains are ideally suited for using mountain bikes as the vehicle tracks are in reasonably good condition especially the first section. However one of my clients doesn't like cycling so it was the long walk in for the four of us.

We set off from the Linn of Dee car park and walked along the track to the White Bridge. We were passed by several vehicles and it appeared that they were off to do some grouse shooting. Normally on National Trust property there are no access restrictions, so I hadn't phoned in advance to check about shooting.

On reaching the White Bridge we followed the track to the Geldie Burn and along the path on its north side as far as the river crossing near Geldie Lodge. The burn was very low so there was no problem crossing it. On the other side three people appeared to be doing some research on the fish in the burn.

At Geldie Lodge, which is the end of the vehicle track, the stalker's vehicle was parked so he was out on the nearby hills, but we never saw him but heard a few shots. The vehicle track shown on the map heading west from Geldie Lodge is actually just a path as a few years ago the NTS removed the vehicle track and replaced it with a path instead. We followed this path to its end where after around 4 hours and 18 kilometres of walking we were now approaching the foot of our first Munro.

We had lunch here before crossing the Allt a'Chaorainn and climbing to the summit of Carn an Fhidhleir. There was a walker's path, which wasn't there several years ago, all the way to the summit. During the ascent we were watched from the ridge by a few deer and near the summit I spotted a mountain hare.

The views were fairly clear especially the long route back to the start but before that we had our second Munro to climb. We descended the south-east ridge of Carn an Fhidhleir. There were lots of deer in the glen below us. At the bealach we climbed through some long heather and peat hags, there being no obvious path on this hill, to the summit cairn of An Sgarsoch. Again we had clear views and stopped off here for a break.

The descent was down the north side of An Sgarsoch and to the west of Scarsoch Bheag and to the path used in the morning. It was now early evening and the sun was out for our long walk back to the start. Around halfway back we stopped for another break but the wind dropped and the midges were out in force so we quickly took off again and by the time we reached the car park at the Linn of Dee it was dark.

As stated these two Munros are ideal for the use of a mountain bike but they can also be climbed on a backpacking trip. I have done this from Glen Feshie taking in a few Corbetts as well but the going was rough in places with lots of peat hags.

previous ascent

Carn an Fhidhleir Munro fifth ascent 994 metres
An Sgarsoch Munro fifth ascent 1006 metres

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Beinn Dearg

10 July 2006

photos taken on walk

Time taken - 5.75 hours. Distance - 26 kilometres. Ascent - 945 metres.

I set off from the car park at Old Blair and headed up Glen Tilt, which isn't the usual approach to this mountain. The normal approach is up Glen Banvie but I have walked in Glen Banvie a few times and fancied something different.

After around a couple of kilometres I left the track up the side of the River Tilt and followed a pleasant path through the forest that led to another vehicle track higher up. This track passed to the west of a rifle range and later emerged from the forest. I continued along this vehicle track as it followed the Allt Slanaidh to the south-west the hill called Elrig. Here the map showed the track became a path and headed in a NNE direction.

The vehicle track in fact crossed the Allt Slanaidh and continued up its east side. This track is not shown on the OS Map despite the fact that it has been in existence for many years. I followed the track which eventually joined up with the vehicle track at the side of the Allt Sheicheachan where the path started to zig zag onto Meall Dubh nan Dearcag.

I followed this zig zag path and headed onto the south-west ridge where I met two backpackers descending out of the cloud. It appeared that the cloud cover on Beinn Dearg was about to lift but it didn't happen so I followed the path to the summit trig point where it was cold and windy.

I didn't linger on the summit and returned to Old Blair by the route of ascent. The return was uneventful.

Beinn Dearg Munro fourth ascent 1008 metres

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Ben Vuirich

1 - 2 July 2006

photos taken on walk

Time taken - 7 hours. Distance - 24 kilometres. Ascent - 750 metres.

It was early evening when I set off from Loch Moraig, near Blair Atholl for an overnight camp en-route to the Corbett, Ben Vuirich.

The start of the walk was noisy with lots of bleating sheep and lambs as they had obviously been separated during the day while the mothers had been shorn and had only recently returned to the field. The majority of the sheep had still to find their lambs but their priority seemed to be some grass. My peace and quiet was further disturbed by some curlews which were upset by my presence.

I followed the estate tracks to the derelict buildings at Shinagag where I had intended camping but on my arrival there was a herd of cows, some with young, so I decided to head higher up. In any case Shinagag was a bit too sheltered and would have been midge infested.

I followed the track through the herd of cattle and onto the small knoll of Carn Breac where there was a slight breeze. I pitched my tent here with good views down Glen Girnaig and out west. The only downside was the lack of water but I managed to cope with what I had carried in.

I had a pleasant night on Carn Breac and in the morning the views to the west were great to waken up to. Once breakfast was over I left my tent and continued along the vehicle track to the south-east end of Meall Breac where the track slowly disappeared in the boggy ground.

This ground was traversed to Loch Valigan followed by a direct assault on the summit of Ben Vuirich. However the initial section of this route was wet, boggy and contained several peat hags which I tried to avoid but the walking became easier once I had gained some height. One downside was the flies which were bothering me as it was calm so I was looking forward to a breeze on the summit.

On reaching the summit trig point the rumbles of thunder started and it was very dark to the south, mind you I was wearing sunglasses. There was a bit of a breeze here so I stopped for a break looking at the Glen Shee Hills and the Cairngorms with the obvious Lairig Ghru pass. I should also mention Beinn a'Ghlo to the north but these hills had been in my view since yesterday when I set off from Loch Moraig.

The thunder was getting more frequent as the dark clouds moved from west to east just south of my location. However I wasn't concerned as there was no evidence of any lightning which is an obvious hazard.

I decided on a slightly different descent route to try and avoid the underfoot conditions near Loch Valigan so I crossed over to Creag nan Gobhar and went down its west ridge. This was followed by a short section of ground similar to what I traversed beside Loch Valigan and involved a slight ascent to reach the track I had used earlier that day. I then followed this track back to my tent.

It had been trying to rain since I left the summit of Ben Vuirich and on return to my tent the rain was a bit heavier so unfortunately the tent was wet as I took it down.

I then returned to Loch Moraig by the previous day's route. The cattle had moved away, the sheep and lambs had been re-united but the curlews were still upset by my presence. The rain had ceased and it was a very humid walk back to the start.

Ben Vuirich Corbett second ascent 903 metres

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Beinn Iutharn Mhor

23 May 2006

photos taken on walk

Time taken - 8.25 hours. Distance - 26.5 kilometres. Ascent - 695 metres.

I met my clients in Braemar and we drove to Inverey where an unscheduled stop delayed us for nearly two hours. If it wasn't for the kind assistance of the local gamekeeper this walk would have had to be cancelled.

We set off for the long walk up Glen Ey, past The Colonel's Bed, to the Altanour Lodge, which is a ruin. This walk took around two hours on a good vehicle track and could easily be cycled. However one of my clients doesn't like cycling hence the walk in.

Beyond the ruined lodge the track deteriorated considerably with various paths, some obviously animal tracks, heading across the heather clad hillside making walking rather awkward after the easy walk up the Glen.

On reaching the north-east ridge of Beinn Iutharn Mhor we headed up this ridge where it was initially sheltered from the cold wind. However we were still subjected to the hail and snow showers. The ridge had plenty of wild life including a hare, several ptarmigan and a pipit. One of my clients spotted a lightening flash on the Cairngorms, which was a bit of a concern but thunder and lightening was forecast for the area.

Higher up the wind was strong again with more hail and snow showers but we eventually reached the summit cairn which was large enough to shelter behind for a very late lunch. The views of the surrounding mountains including the Cairngorms were very clear and the clarity made it easy to identify them.

After lunch we retraced our route, with the wind now on our backs, finding traces of a path down the north-east ridge of Beinn Iutharn Mhor but it later vanished into the heather. We headed closer to the Allt Beinn Iutharn and followed it back to the ruined lodge. The paths here were more boggy and wet but obviously used more by walkers and at one point there was a small bridge to assist a stream crossing which we missed on the upward route.

The return down Glen Ey was uneventful although we did disturb several large herds of deer before eventually reaching the car park at Inverey.

Beinn Iutharn Mhor Munro fifth ascent 1045 metres

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Carn Dearg Mor

17 April 2006

photos taken on walk

Time taken - 5.5 hours. Distance - 21 kilometres. Ascent - 564 metres.

From the car park north of Auchlean we walked past this farm and took the path towards the wood where we crossed the Allt Fhearnagan and were confronted by loads of shooters who had the wood surrounded. I am not sure what they were after, pheasants or foxes but we never heard any shots. We got permission to proceed but it was like having an armed escort as we walked towards the bridge over the River Feshie. This bridge is now in good condition having been repaired and this allowed the shooters to drive across the bridge and park their vehicles at various points on the east side of the river.

Once on the opposite side of the river we followed a path south until it joined the tarred and well maintained road almost as far as Carnachuin. Here we headed uphill by a vehicle track but once beyond the forest we left the track and climbed the heather clad hillside onto the north ridge of Carn Dearg Beag where there was a faint path.

This path was followed to the summit trig point of Carn Dearg Beag. The early sun had been replaced by cloud and it was windy as we continued south towards Carn Dearg Mor. This was a reasonably easy ascent following the faint path through the heather but unfortunately it was very windy and once again we had a ten minute blast of snow just before we arrived on the summit of Carn Dearg Mor.

It was too cold and windy to hang about on the open summit so we headed to the bealach to the south-west and then dropped down to the vehicle track than runs round the side of Carn Dearg.

We found a reasonably sheltered area beside Lochan an t-Sluic for our lunch. This lochan has two streams that flow into it and none flowing out so we presumed that there must be some underground channel for the water to escape towards the River Feshie.

After lunch we followed the track to the River Feshie and Glenfeshie Lodge but had to leave the track on numerous occasions to allow the shooter's vehicles to pass. They must have gone to the south west of Carn Dearg Mor but once again we never heard any shots. The track was followed back to Carnachuin and we then returned to our cars by the outward route.

previous ascent

Carn Dearg Mor Corbett second ascent 857 metres

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Beinn a'Ghlo

10 February 2006

photos taken on walk

Time taken - 7 hours. Distance - 13 miles. Ascent - 1300 metres.

The weather forecast indicated that Friday was to be sunny with a slight breeze while the weekend was to be wet and windy so I decided to take the Friday off and work over the weekend.

I planned to climb the three Munros of the Beinn a'Ghlo group but instead of the usual clockwise direction with the long walk out I decided to do it in reverse.

I left my car near Loch Moraig on the access road to Monzie Farm and set off along the track leading to the foot of Carn Liath. I was followed by a group of three, the lady of the group aiming to climb her one thousandth Munro. She was all excited by the event and a bottle of champagne was put into a rucksack. I decided against telling them that I had passed this total some time ago but I was told if I planned it right I could have some champagne. I had to decline this offer as I don't partake of alcohol but they thought that I should on such a special occasion. Fortunately they were climbing these Munros in the opposite direction from me.

I continued along the track beyond the south-west ridge of Carn Liath and was later passed by two shepherds on their all terrain vehicles with their dogs standing on the back. Once further east I followed a path across the heather clad hillside below Beinn Bheag to the Allt Bealach an Fhiodha where I found shelter from the cold wind for a short break in the sun.

I thereafter crossed this stream and commenced the climb of the Munro Top, Airgoid Bheinn, initially on a path through the heather but later the ascent became fairly steep and stony. The ground was frozen and the small stones moved easily so care was required before I reached the snow line. The final ascent of Airgoid Bheinn was through some boulders, the gaps hidden by snow. However it was well worth the effort as I had good views especially to the east and across to the other hills on my day's planned route.

The wind was very cold here and as I descended to the bealach the ground was very icy in places and required some care until I was well on my way to the cairn to the south-west of Carn nan Gabhar. Again care was required as the hollows between the boulders were concealed by the snow. I reached the trig point, which is not the summit and continued to the highest point a couple hundred metres further on. Here I had fantastic views of Glen Tilt, Lairig Ghru and the snow clad Cairngorm mountains.

After taking several photographs I returned to the bealach and descended to another bealach at the head of the Allt Bealach an Fhiodha. En route I met the lady, heading to her one thousandth Munro, together with her male companions, one of whom had been using crampons. We exchanged underfoot condition reports and I headed up the east ridge of Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain and as the other party predicted to a short icy section at the top.

Once beyond that obstacle I continued to the summit of Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain before descending the south ridge where I spotted another two walkers returning to the start rather than continuing to Carn an Gabhar. I found some shelter for lunch before climbing the twisted ridge of Carn Liath where once again I had some good views.

I descended the steep path on the south-west ridge of Carn Liath which had some good soft snow to make the descent easier. Lower down I crossed the normally boggy ground which was frozen and made walking easy, before the return along the track to the start.

Carn nan Gabhar Munro fourth ascent 1129 metres
Braigh Coire Chruinn-bhalgain Munro fourth ascent 1070 metres
Carn Liath Munro fourth ascent 975 metres

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Pitlochry Hills

20 January 2006

photos taken on walk

Blath Bhag Time taken - 2.75 hours. Distance - 4.5 kilometres. Ascent - 270 metres.
Ben Vrackie Time taken - 3.25 hours. Distance - 8 kilometres. Ascent - 630 metres.

The drive from the east coast of Scotland had been in clear weather but on approaching the start of this walk on the Kirkmichael to Pitlochry road the cloud base lowered and it started to snow.

The start was from the highest point on this road beside a communication tower where I followed a vehicle track uphill. However the track changed direction and wasn't on the bearing I was using in the snow and low cloud so I continued on the bearing through knee deep heather with hollows hidden by the lying snow.

The walking conditions weren't any better on the ridge but the snow wasn't as heavy and eventually stopped. I found a fence on the ridge which I followed to Point 637 before descending slightly and climbing to the knoll north of the summit still following the fence. The summit was a few metres further north just beyond the junction of three fences.

There was no view from the summit, just a cold wind blowing so I commenced my return and followed the fence and my boot prints back to the start and by the time I arrived back it had started snowing again.

I then drove to Moulin on the outskirts of Pitlochry and parked my car in the car park near Baledmund. Here it was raining as I was at a lower altitude.

I set off along the track through the forest and onto the open hillside and by this time the rain had ceased. I continued along the well maintained path to Loch a'Choire where snow was lying before I commenced a fairly steep ascent into the cloud and on the snow covered man made stone path.

This path eventually took me to the summit trig point and indicator and once again there was no view so I commenced the return to Loch a'Choire. Once lower down the cloud started to break up and by the time I was heading back to the forest the summit of Ben Vrackie was clear and the sun was shining. Just my luck but I had no intention of going back, well not then.

Blath Bhalg Graham first ascent 641 metres
Ben Vrackie Corbett second ascent 841 metres

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Ben Gulabin

23 October 2005

photos taken on walk

Driving west through Deeside, the hills had a covering of snow, the first this winter, and at the Cairnwell Ski Centre it was snowing with the snow lying to just above the car parks. Skiers don't get excited as there wasn't enough snow for you to get your skies out just yet.

The start of this walk was just north of the Spittal of Glenshee where a vehicle track gives easy access to this hill. On the gate was a notice about stalking but it appeared that there was no restrictions as long as walkers didn't go beyond Ben Gulabin. The board also contained the dates they were stalking, the last date being the 22nd, which was the first day of the hind stalking season. However it was Sunday so there were no restrictions.

The track gave easy access to the north side of the hill to an old ski building. Here I watched a large herd of deer traverse the snow covered Ben Gulabin with the stags roaring and darting back and forth. This was followed by a smaller group of deer with a lone tired looking stag at the back.

After watching these deer till they disappeared over to the south side of the hill I climbed Ben Gulabin following an all terrain vehicle track which had churned up the heather. On reaching the south-east ridge the deer were further down the ridge and I headed to the summit cairn. I just arrived at the summit before a couple who came up from Gleann Taitneach. They told me that they were responsible for disturbing the deer who had been sheltering in the glen.

The return to the start was by the ascent route and was fairly rapid and uneventful other than listening to the roar of the stags on the opposite side of the road.

Ben Gulabin Corbett second ascent 806 metres

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Backpacking in the Forest of Atholl

11 - 12 June 2005

Earlier in the day I had a walk booked in Glen Coe so rather than come home straight afterwards I contacted a fellow hill walker to ascertain if they wanted to do some walking on the Sunday. Their reply was the suggestion of a bivy and the area north of Blair Atholl was agreed upon.

Early Saturday evening we met in Perth and I was driven north to Blair Atholl and subsequently to the car park near the Old Bridge of Tilt after a stop for something to eat.

It was 9.30pm when we actually set off having changed our plans slightly from sleeping in a bivy bag to using our tents as the forecast wasn't very favourable for sleeping out in the open.

From the car park we walked up Glen Tilt, initially on the west side of the River Tilt and then on the east side as far as Gilbert's bridge. We obviously upset a bird while walking up the Glen in the semi-light as it was making loud alarm calls. My walking partner spotted, in a tree, an owl which was watching us closely.

At Gilbert's Bridge we re-crossed the River Tilt and continued on a track on the west side of the river. Once out of the woods it was time to look for a camping spot as it was getting dark but the area was covered in bracken so we continued to the bridge over the Allt Diridh and walked along the path above the gorge.

It was now 11.30pm and we came across a grassy area on the hillside beside a small stream and in the semi dark erected our tents. It turned out to be an ideal position as the ground was soft and reasonably flat.

Once the tents were up it was time for a brew before retiring to our tents.

Around 3.30 the following morning the rain commenced so we were pleased that we had taken our tents instead of going slightly lighter by carrying bivy bags. The rain continued off and on but we were up early and during a dry spell managed to take down the tents and pack our gear.

We started walking again about 7.30am with a short stroll to an old stone bridge over the Allt Mhairc at the foot of Gleann Mhairc. From here it was a steady climb up the south ridge of Beinn Mheadhonach. A mountain hare spotted us and ran off.

Higher up the gradient eased but by this time we were in the mist as we passed two cairns, the latter one being the actual summit of Beinn Mheadhonach. We descended to the bealach, which had some peat hags, but we were able to walk through them before heading round the west side of Carn a'Chiaraidh to another bealach.

My walking companion put on more clothing and had something to eat here as they were feeling extremely cold. We then contoured round the south side of Elrig 'ic an Toisich and to its bealach with Beinn Dearg. During the traverse of the hillside the rain turned to sleet as the temperatures dropped and this was June.

At this third bealach a decision had to be made. The choice was a reasonable easy 200 metre ascent of Beinn Dearg and a path back to the Old Bridge of Tilt or a much longer day heading further north to the remote Corbett Beinn Bhreac. This Corbett reaches a height of 912 metres and is just a couple of metres short of being a Munro. I'm sure the Munro Baggers will he happy that it remains below the 3,000 foot mark as it is a very remote hill from whatever direction you approach.

My companion hadn't been to Beinn Bhreac before, so I went along with their decision despite the frequent sleet showers. We therefore descended in a northerly direction to the Tarf Water. The bealach beside the burn was covered in peat hags and bog and it took a while to cross. However the stream didn't cause us any problems. Here we had a brew and some lunch.

We left our sacks here and commenced the climb of Beinn Bhreac. Initially more bog to wander round but once higher up it was pleasant walking, especially with the packs off. Although we had some sleet and rain the cloud did try to break up but failed and we reached the summit cairn in the mist.

There was no point in hanging about at the summit so we returned to the Tarf Water collected our packs and commenced the long walk back. Initially walking was very difficult with large expanses of bog but as we climbed round the north side of Beinn Gharbh conditions improved and there were traces of a path. However when we reached the next bealach we were once more confronted by peat bog but picked up the Allt Beinn Losgarnaich and the path on its north side.

It started to rain heavily and changed to hail for a while as we descended this reasonably good stalker's path. By the time we reached the track to Bruar Lodge the rain and hail had ceased.

We headed south passed Bruar Lodge before picking up another path on the east side of Bruar Water. This path, which had sections of bog and disappeared at one point, climbed up and over to the Sheicheachan bothy where we had planned to take a rest.

We stayed at the bothy for a while drinking cups of tea and coffee and taking on some more food for the final section of the walk. During this stop three walkers, who had been up on Beinn Dearg in snow, came in for a quick break and told us that it took them two hours to walk into the bothy so we knew how long it would take us to walk out with heavier packs.

We set off along the track at a fair pace after our rest and food intake and made good progress. It took us just over the two hours to reach the car park beside the Old Bridge of Tilt and the end of a tough day but with two Corbetts bagged for my walking companion.

previous ascent Beinn Bhreac

Beinn Mheadhonach Corbett second ascent 901 metres
Beinn Bhreac Corbett second ascent 912 metres

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Carn Bhac

30 January 2005

The previous day I had guided Frances on a long day out on the Cairngorms so this was to be a shorter day. Shona, Laila and Fraser, who had seen this walk advertised on my 'Programme Page', had decided to join Frances.

The start of the walk was beside the bridge over the Ey Burn, which is easily located as it is beside the telephone kiosk at Inverey. From here we walked along a track past the house at Loin-a-veaich, along the edge of a forest and out onto the open hillside.

Once out in the open it was a lot cooler due to the wind that was blowing down the glen. The track continued almost to the col south of Carn Liath where we avoided some patches of snow. From this point we were able to look north across to the Cairngorms which were covered in cloud.

We headed south following traces of a path over a couple of hillocks to Geal Charn. At this point we changed direction and descended slightly before climbing to Carn Bhac's South-West Top, which is classed as a Munro Top.

Earlier I had seen two individuals standing at this summit before descending its north-east ridge. I hope they didn't think they were on the Munro summit as older Ordnance Survey maps show this point as Carn Bhac. Well I will never know as they were off down the ridge before we could meet up.

From the Munro Top we headed to the true summit of Carn Bhac. Here the wind began to pick up and it was a bit of a fight against the strong wind to reach the summit cairn. As it was now very windy everyone was happy to descend Carn Bhac's north-east ridge and get away from the strongest of the winds.

This descent was fairly steep trying to avoid some snow patches. It was obviously a popular area with the hares, which stood out in their white fur against the bare landscape.

Lower down we crossed the Allt Coire Bhearnaist and followed traces of a path down the west side of the Allt Connie before crossing the Allt Cristie Mor by a bridge and rejoining the track we used earlier that day.

A short walk took us back to the start at the Ey Burn.

Carn Bhac Munro fifth ascent 946 metres

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Braemar

18 September 2004

It was a windy day when we set off from the car park in Chapel Brae, Braemar and followed the track to the landmark indicator which is allegedly located lower than its original proposed position. This is probably true as several of the landmarks indicated cannot be viewed from this point.

The path steepened from here across the heather moorland. We stopped several times to look back at Braemar and the rainbows that arced across this village as frequent rain squalls passed through the area.

On reaching the summit, which is covered in ugly buildings, some for telecommunications use, we took shelter behind one of these buildings as the wind was very strong and noisy here as it battered against the buildings.

Once we ate lunch we returned to Braemar by our ascent route.

Morrone Corbett second ascent 859 metres

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Gaik Corbetts

17 April 2004

The starting point was the A9 at Dalnacardoch Lodge with a cycle up the track to Sronphadruig Lodge just south of Loch an Duin. It was then a steep climb up onto the summit plateau of An Dun where the wind was fairly strong. The summit was clear so we had some views of the surrounding hills.

A continuation north took us steeply down An Dun's north ridge where we disturbed a herd of hinds feeding in the sheltered glen below. Once across the Allt Loch an Duin it was a steep slog up towards Maol Creag an Loch following several hares in their white coats with nowhere to hide as the lying snow had gone. However the forecast was for rain and snow by lunchtime and for once it was correct.

On arriving on the plateau of A'Chaoirnich there was driving snow with poor visibility. The small cairn was found and it was then the sake of walking down the south ridge directly into the driving snow. A steep descent took us back to Sronphadruig Lodge and the cycle back to the A9 in the rain.

An Dun Corbett first ascent 827 metres
A'Chaoirnich Corbett first ascent 876 metres

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Glen Shee

21 November 2003

This day, accompanied by three ladies from Edinburgh, I headed for Glas Tulaichean and Carn an Righ. We started from the Spittal of Glenshee and followed the track that goes almost to the summit of the first Munro. On approaching the summit trig point in the mist, we saw two walkers. I recognised one as a fellow Aberdonian Andy Nisbet, who maintains the records for all new climbs in Scotland on behalf of the Scottish Mountaineering Club. Andy was my guide the first time I did the Cuillin Munros in Skye. He was also my instructor on my mountain leader training course at Glenmore Lodge. After a brief chat we headed off in separate directions for Carn an Righ.

As we ascended Carn an Righ the cloud base lowered and we encountered a couple of snow showers. On reaching the summit we stopped briefly to congratulate Laila who had now completed 142 Munros and was half way to completing all the Munros. Congratulations Laila.

We then made our way over to Gleann Taitneach, where the weather was a lot better, and the long walk back down the glen to the start. En-route various herds of deer watched us carefully as we headed south. Once again we made it back to the start just as it was getting totally dark.

Glas Tulaichean Munro fifth ascent 1051 metres
Carn an Righ Munro fifth ascent 1029 metres

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Solo Backpack

13 - 15 June 2003

The weekend weather looked as if it would stay dry so on Friday afternoon I set off for Glen Feshie on the west side of the Cairngorms. From the car park at Auchlean a short cycle ride south took me to my starting point and a climb up onto the Corbett Carn Dearg Mor. It was now late evening so a suitable camp site was found beside the deer.

In the morning, after breakfast, I left my tent and climbed the Corbett Meallach Mhor before returning to the camp site for coffee. Broke camp and headed for the Minigaig, an old drovers’ path but it was difficult to follow in places as it is overgrown and obviously infrequently used. Once at its highest point I climbed to the summit of my second Corbett of the day Leathad an Taobhain. This is obviously a very remote area of the country as I hadn’t seen or met anyone since I left my car.

My next target was Beinn Bhreac another remote Corbett. This was reached over difficult terrain including peat bogs. I had now climbed all the Corbetts in this area but still had a few hours till I needed to set up camp for the night so I set off for the remote Munro Carn an Fhidhleir again over very rough ground. On reaching its summit I descended south-east towards the Allt a’Chaorainn where I set up camp for the night. After my meal I had a walk up the other Munro in this area, An Sgarsoch, before returning to my tent for what I thought was a well earned rest.

The following day I started on the long walk out and headed for the River Feshie. The upper reaches are very scenic with waterfalls and gorges and together with the abundance of wildlife my mind was kept active.

The path along the side of the River is rather eroded in places and some care was needed.

On approaching the bothy around lunchtime I met the first humans I had seen since I left my car on Friday. The lower Glen was fairly crowded after the loneliness of the solo backpacker and the journey back to the car was uneventful.

Carn Dearg Mor Corbett first ascent 857 metres
Meallach Mhor Corbett first ascent 769 metres
Leathad an Taobhain Corbett first ascent 912 metres
Beinn Bhreac Corbett first ascent 912 metres
Carn an Fhidhleir Munro fourth ascent 994 metres
An Sgarsoch Munro fourth ascent 1006 metres

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