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Easy in the East - The Buck and Tap o' Noth

Easy in the East - The Buck and Tap o' Noth


Postby malky_c » Tue Dec 01, 2020 10:37 pm

Route description: Tap o' Noth, near Rhynie

Grahams included on this walk: The Buck

Sub 2000' hills included on this walk: Tap o'Noth

Date walked: 22/11/2020

Time taken: 3.3 hours

Distance: 10 km

Ascent: 630m

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This weekend we decided to head east for some easy walking. Jackie hadn't been into the Cabrach area before and I still hadn't been up the Tap o' Noth despite intending to on a couple of occasions. We decided to try a couple of hills, meaning we could go home after one if Jackie wasn't feeling too good. We started with the Buck, parking up shortly after midday.

The Buck: 330m ascent, 5km, 1 hour, 50 minutes.

A straightforward hill, this - you pretty much just follow a straight fenceline along the Moray/Aberdeenshire boundary the whole way. Down low was a bit boggy and also exposed to the wind, but as we climbed, we moved into the lee of the hill and the ground improved. There is a path the whole way, but my previous memory of it was that I hadn't managed to stay dry in trainers.


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On the way up the Buck

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Ben Rinnes from the Buck

Jackie was tiring near the summit and we were becoming more exposed to the wind, but fortunately the ascent wasn't very big. We sheltered amongst the rocks of the summit tor for lunch before sticking our heads above the parapet - the wind on the trig point was more intense than expected! A bit grey and claggy but the views weren't too bad. We could just about make out the snowy plateau of the eastern Cairngorms peeking out below the cloud base.

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Buck summit

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Mount Keen and Morven

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North to Knock Hill

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(Not so) ancient carvings

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Jackie at the summit

The descent was quicker and there was the odd spot of sunshine on the way down. Jackie had recovered after lunch so we decided to carry on to the Tap o' Noth.

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Tap o Noth from the descent
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Tap o' Noth: 300m ascent, 5km, 1 hour, 30 minutes.

The road to the Tap o' Noth carpark is easy to miss as it is hidden away in a hedgerow. Once we had turned around and tried again from the other direction, we parked up and wandered up the path. Some work had been done on the first section, but it appeared that the entire path was pretty good.


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Tap o Noth from the Howton car park

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The Buck and Strathdon hills

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Tap o Noth

We wound around a bit and my suggestions of shortcuts through the crags were shot down. The sun had really made an appearance now, so we enjoyed the views. Once at the summit area, we followed the northern wall of the old fort around to the trig point. Unsurprisingly it was windy again here! We debated waiting for sunset but there was too much cloud around - we would see it from the route down anyway.

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Summit

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NW from the Tap

As expected the sunset was pleasant but unspectacular - not good enough to bother waiting around for.

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Sun going down over The Buck

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Cat Craigs and Kirkney Water

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Getting there...

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Knock Hill in the distance

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Crags on the W side of the summit cone

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Back to Cook's Cairn and Ben Rinnes

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In the direction of Bennachie

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North to the sunshine

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Section of summit fort wall

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Nice clouds over Deeside

An easy descent had us back at the car before dark for the journey home.
Last edited by malky_c on Fri Jan 29, 2021 4:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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malky_c
 
Posts: 6016
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
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Sub 2000:276   Hewitts:268
Wainwrights:122   Islands:36
Joined: Nov 22, 2009
Location: Glasgow/Inverness

Re: Easy in the East - The Buck and Tap o' Noth

Postby Alteknacker » Thu Dec 03, 2020 11:35 pm

The covid situation has definitely made many of us re-assess the "less interesting" hills: where we are now, any hill is "interesting"!
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Alteknacker
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Posts: 3129
Munros:173   Corbetts:31
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Joined: May 25, 2013
Location: Effete South (of WIgan, anyway)

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