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Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Orchy?

Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby Sack the Juggler » Fri Feb 22, 2019 5:57 pm

Sack the Juggler wrote:
orion wrote:It was intact in the late 1970s when I stayed in it.It was indeed burrowed into a mound of earth and difficult to find.A small stove was vented through the roof and the small chimney was a giveaway when you got close.It was built by a teacher from Lanark I think.No door but there was a heavy tarpaulin that could be pulled tight.Went back for a return visit about 10 years ago and you could just about make out where it had been.Not much left of it at all.If you are at Ba Bridge then look eastwards and there is a prominent little hillock with a stand of Scots pines on top.That is where it was.I may have a pic of the site from my last visit somewhere.
some great feedback there, both on the bothy position and its origins
now I think we need to track down the teacher
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby orion » Fri Feb 22, 2019 11:18 pm

Back in the late 70s I was camping at the Inveroran.Two teenagers from Lanark were camping beside me and had run out of food so I gave them enough to stay on another day and in return they told me about a bothy their teacher had built on the mooor and gave me directions to it.Filed it away in my to do list and went looking for it a few months later.This was the remains in 2008.A lot bigger than it looks as it burrows back into the earth mound to beyond the old tree trunk sticking out on the left hand side.There was evidence of a half hearted attempt at restoring it.A fair bit of work involved in making it habitable again if anyone wants to volunteer :D

Let`s see if I can embed the photo now...

https://flic.kr/p/2dMd1kj
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby Caberfeidh » Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:46 am

I imagined you had been chased by wolves and took shelter in an ancient burial mound...

Conan.jpg
Ancient burial mound ; handy for escaping wolves
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby Caberfeidh » Sat Feb 23, 2019 4:19 pm

A quick google search brought up a page on bothies, with this regrettable adendum from 2016. Oh dear....
"On the way home Alastair was keen to see the Rannoch doss, one of Scotland's semi-secret bothies, hidden surprisingly close to the main road. It was gone, flattened, a mass of collapsed corrugated iron."
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby polmanb » Sun Feb 24, 2019 10:51 pm

Wow. Thanks for all the replies. Really fascinating and made me all the more keen to find it. It would be about 25 years since I was last there so I suppose it could have collapsed and went to ruin, but I don't recognise the photos as being it. I have turned 40 though, so my memory isn't what it was. My dad's trying to find a couple of photos he took. 'Bothy' is a bit of a stretch for what it was, so makes sense for it to be a hidey hole! Need to go through all the posts properly and have a think. All the best
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby polmanb » Sun Feb 24, 2019 11:19 pm

It would have been while I was staying at Inveroran doing the B of O Munros or WHW. Not Glen Kinglass. The trees were definitely visible to the East as you head North on the WHW from Ba. I reckon we've got it Orion. Your description sounds spot on and the picture kind of rings a bell, but if that's the state of it now then that's a shame. My dad just told me today he took my brother there overnight when he was 16 (about 1999) and the tarp was gone. They spent the whole time with their sleeping bags over their heads to escape the midges. Brother's never been outdoors again 😂
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby orion » Mon Feb 25, 2019 1:21 am

Caberfeidh wrote:A quick google search brought up a page on bothies, with this regrettable adendum from 2016. Oh dear....
"On the way home Alastair was keen to see the Rannoch doss, one of Scotland's semi-secret bothies, hidden surprisingly close to the main road. It was gone, flattened, a mass of collapsed corrugated iron."


That was the Rannoch Club doss which was well hidden down the gorge across from Savilles house.Pretty dodgy ladder to get down to it especially on a winters night.It was locked but if you pulled on a piece of rope a key would magically appear from above :)
It was quite roomy with a cooker etc.A well kept secret and sorry to hear about another slice of mountaineering history disappearing.
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby Caberfeidh » Wed Apr 24, 2019 10:43 am

So Easter Sunday was sunny and warm, and I fancied a bit of a hike but not too much, and I had been waiting for better weather since I heard of this mysterious doss. I had researched a bit on google earth and figured out where it was. A quick drive from Caberfeidh Towers, I abandoned the Caberfeidhmobile by the A82, donned my new boots and set off over the moor.
There is a bit of a rough footpath across fairly firm moor, with the occasional mud-wallow. No doubt this is a lot worse in wetter weather. Lichen-encrusted boulders gave landmarks to stop by for rests and scenery-appreciation. Also my new boots were showing their unsuitability for the activity; my heels were complaining of friction.
IMG_1869#p#r.jpg
Rannoch Moor#1


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Lichen-Encrusted Rocks ~ landmarks and windbreaks.

I left the track eventually, setting off for a group of trees on a hillock. Peat hags showed root systems of ancient forest, and I piled up some chunks of this old wood so the wind will dry them out and they will provide good campfire wood for someone, maybe me, at some point. A fire in this present weather would cause unmanageable moor fires with so much dead grass standing dry and warm, and the wild birds and little furry creatures nesting would be devastated; fires should only be used in damp or frozen weather.
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Pine-crowned hillock in the misty distance


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Pine crowned hillock with Blackmount behind


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Getting closer

A pair of wild Canada Geese honked at me reproachfully as I disturbed their peace, a heron fished by a loch and lapwings called across the moor.
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Wild Geese

As I floundered across the moorland of tussock grass, bull-rushes, deep wet sphagnum moss and peat hags the hillock with its crown of tall pines grew closer until I was there, in amongst the cool shade of the trees. There were a great many fallen boughs and trunks, some still hanging dangerously above the ground, "widow-makers" as foresters call them. The wood squeaked and groaned in the breeze, the only sound above the whisper of the wind across the moor.
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In the shady woods

I circled the hillock until I found the remains of the bothy. Not underground as such, just built into the side of the slope. If it had a roof covered with turf you might call it underground. A pile of wrecked corrugated iron and logs showed where someone had tried to fix a roof of sorts. A tiny old iron grate in a stone chimney showed where the heat had come from in times past, and shreds of old canvas in amongst the rocks showed where the previous roof covering had been. It would take a bit of work to do up this doss, and I don't see the point. It is a long way from anywhere and too small and rough to be of use to hikers and bothy rats. Ornithology enthusiasts might like the setting but not the hike in. Especially with boots that carve your heels into bloody stumps. Nice views of the hills and moors though. I had to hike all the way back, blistered heels and all.
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The remains of the bothy ~ maybe it was an old illicit still site.


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close up - entrance


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Grate and chimney


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Cold fireside


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inside ~ compact and bijou...


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External - messy.


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The hills are a bit far off for a howff.


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view from the shadows


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It's a long trudge back to anywhere


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Rannoch Moor and watery bits


I drove up to the Kingshouse, the Ballachulish Hotel was too far and I couldn't be bothered to investigate their mysterious "barwheys" which I suspect was a typo of "barley". Instead i investigated how fast I could eat a Kingshouse fish and chips washed down with apple juice. Again I forgot to ask how much a pint of beer or cider was. And what with the Easter drivers out, it took me three and a half hours to get back to Glasgopolis. My heels are still gowpin'...
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby Pastychomper » Wed Apr 24, 2019 1:02 pm

That could be the best trip report I've read all day. :wink:
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby Sack the Juggler » Wed Apr 24, 2019 3:54 pm

great work Cabinfindah!
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby Caberfeidh » Fri Apr 26, 2019 8:54 am

I've had this wicked idea ~ I'll post images of quasi-mythical bothies in far-flung locations, and snigger to myself as curious hill people trudge endless miles in the middle of nowhere trying to find them. Let's start with Dave's Doss, a luxurious bijou cabin with hot and cold running weasels on the west coast of Torridon...

Mystery Doss.jpg
Mystery Doss
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby Caberfeidh » Wed May 08, 2019 4:16 pm

How about this mysterious bothy on the south coast of Sutherland?

IMG_8082#pr.jpg
Mysterious bothy on the south coast of Sutherland...
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby Caberfeidh » Thu May 09, 2019 3:53 pm

Anyone fancy searching for Craigielachie's bothy on the west coast of Aberdeenshire?

log cabin#r.jpg
Craigielachie's Bothy, west coast of Aberdeenshire.
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby Caberfeidh » Sun May 12, 2019 3:44 pm

Anyone want to search out Rob Roy's Kidney Stone on Ben Domher?

April 2014 042a1.jpg
Rob Roy's Stone ~ a hollowed-out massive rock on the slopes of Ben Domher...
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Re: Underground bothy near Ba Bridge, Rannoch / Bridge of Or

Postby BigTed » Mon Jun 03, 2019 2:16 pm

For anyone interested here is a pic of the Ba Doss late 1940s or 1950s


https://photos.app.goo.gl/197Ff3MjLo6E1gzJ8
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