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5 from Inverey: scorchio!

5 from Inverey: scorchio!


Postby jayforres » Sat Jul 17, 2021 6:23 pm

Munros included on this walk: An Socach (Braemar), Beinn Iutharn Mhòr, Càrn an Rìgh, Càrn Bhac, Glas Tulaichean

Date walked: 15/07/2021

Time taken: 5.3 hours

Distance: 25 km

Ascent: 1600m

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I’m not sure what the hill-walking equivalent of “eyes too big for your tummy” is but that’s definitely how I felt after last week’s over-exuberance in Glen Lyon; so, lesson learned, I scaled back my ambitions this week with a wee trip to deepest Aberdeenshire. Can’t say I was feeling all that sprightly first thing but was in the car soon after 7 and some Peat and Diesel soon blew the cobwebs away.

The Inverey carpark was half full when I rolled up just before 9, with two other pairs of walkers prepping their bikes, and once I’d done the usual kit faff (no, I really don’t need my heavier waterproof jacket today) I started grinding up the track after them: there’s a steep section early on to wake up the legs but otherwise it’s a very gentle scenic gradient along Glen Ey, albeit rather rough higher up.

GE1.jpg
Glen Ey

40 minutes later I arrived at the Altanour bike park and embarked on kit faff number 2, although my biggest concern was that it was already very hot and I almost certainly didn’t have enough fluid. Oh well, I can always cut it short if necessary…

10.15 and it was properly scorchio as I set off up the track: the WH route to Càrn Bhac seems to take a big banana to the southwest across the Alltan Odhar, but there was an obliging ATV track heading on a more direct route up the slopes of Carn Creagach, once it disappeared I picked my way up through the heather to the bealach and on to the rocky summit. A couple of minutes retying laces and I was off towards Beinn Iutharn Mhòr, bimbling around the head of the valley down glorious soft slopes to the 789m col. 51 weeks of the year this section would be a hellish bog fest but today it was pretty much dry and just a case of picking the easiest way through the hags. The way up Beinn Iutharn Mhòr was looking steeper the closer I got though and proved to be the first of several short but brutal slogs: thankfully it’s only 20 minutes' effort but I was relieved to find a cooling breeze up on the ridge.

GE6.jpg
Looking back down the NW ridge of Beinn Iutharn Mhòr

A longer rest this time, chatting with other walkers, admiring the views, especially across to the Cairngorms and reflecting on how quick Sasha went round this section (at night) last year on his record run. Beeping watch sent me on my way, not for the first or last time today failing to find the path, then overrunning the junction at the bealach and taking a cross-country traverse around Màm nan Càrn. The climb to Càrn an Rìgh was hot but mercifully brief and I was soon heading down again, this time deliberately avoiding the rocky path in favour of grassy slopes.

GE7.jpg
Glas Tulaichean: straight across or round the head of the valley?

Looking across to Glas Tulaichean I was swithering about route: straight across (extra 60m descent and climb, but nearly 1.5km shorter) or round the head of the valley? In retrospect the former is probably quicker but the path route and my aversion to extra climb won out and I took the long way round. Another longish stop at the top, rationing my remaining fluid, trying to get some food in and admiring 360 views, except for the one to the NE which revealed just how far it was to An Socach and Altanour.

GE4.jpg
An Socach looks a long way off

The initial descent down the north ridge was fine, but I made a tactical error trying to go round the unnamed 858m hill: I should’ve stuck to the path and sucked up the climb. Don’t think there is much of a path round Loch nan Eun, which looked very enticing, even for a non-swimmer. Some more mostly dry hags to traverse and it was on to the final climb of the day. It doesn’t look much on the map but I was completely cooked and absolutely crawled up it; by this time even the emergency Haribo weren’t helping.

Eventually over the top and on to the gentle N ridge, which suddenly became the very steep N ridge, but the terrain is otherwise fine and I zigzagged down the heather with few alarms, just a shame all those cloudberries aren’t ripe yet. No faffing looking for a good crossing point at the stream either, was happy to wade across and cool down a bit. Back at Altanour the bike park had thinned out a bit, and the return journey, with a lot of freewheeling, took less than 30 minutes.

GE2.jpg
Altanour bike park at 3.45

Beforehand I’d been budgeting on 60 minutes per summit, plus 30 back to the start, plus 30 minutes of stops (actual was 51, 55, 42, 56, 64 plus 27 and 34 of stops) so overall I made good time but struggled in the heat and I need to take more than 2 litres with me in those conditions: was very glad to get to the Braemar garage as it closed and spent most of the journey home rehydrating.
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Last edited by jayforres on Fri Jul 23, 2021 10:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
jayforres
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Posts: 5
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Hewitts:21
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Re: 5 from Inverey: scorchio!

Postby jayedubya73 » Mon Jul 19, 2021 8:58 am

I did this route the day after you - on Friday!

Its a big old bike/hike. I did the "as the crow flies" route from the top of Carn an Righ to Glas Tulaichean. Its quite a steep descent from SE ridge of CaR, and another steep climb on tired legs up west side of GT, but all through heather (again), so I am not sure how much it saved.

Took me 9hours 50 all in. Its definitely the longest single outing I have done.


Should have added... with the bike and hike, my Garmin registered 26.88 miles.
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jayedubya73
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Posts: 31
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Joined: Apr 18, 2017
Location: Cumbernauld

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