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Short and sweet Creag an Amalaidh, then Dornoch beach walk

Short and sweet Creag an Amalaidh, then Dornoch beach walk

Postby gld73 » Mon Mar 21, 2022 11:40 pm

Route description: Dornoch Point

Sub 2000' hills included on this walk: Creag an Amalaidh

Date walked: 14/03/2022

Time taken: 4.3 hours

Distance: 19.5 km

Ascent: 335m

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Due to sore feet from a long walk on hard forestry tracks the day before I didn't fancy anything too epic, but the weather was far too nice to waste a day off by not heading out somewhere. Creag an Amalaidh always seemed a bit small to make a special trip for, I'd been thinking I'd do it on the way up north sometime, but decided to do it today to get a small hill done, then made a day of it by heading to nearby Dornoch to do a flatter walk there (pretty much combing the Dornoch point and Dornoch to Embo walks described on this site).

Creag an Amalaidh hill walk
4km, 285m, 1.3hrs

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I parked beside the A9 at the old lodge entrance, parking well off to the side in case anyone needed access - but walking that route, it doesn't look like it's actually used by vehicles any more.

Got a nice view of Cambusmore lodge as I passed by

Walked up the track, then, taking a suggestion from Walking With Kids recent report, left it at this point to go through the gate and follow an overgrown track which goes to the transmitter on the hill side

Creag an Amalaidh

Track goes to the transmitter, I headed up left here through steep pathless heather and bracken to get up on the top of the hill

Looking back down to the mast and The Mound

Loch Fleet immediately to the east

Once up the short steep section, it was a slog through high heather on a more gentle incline to get to the summit

Creag an Amalaidh summit cairn

I carried on over the hill to head down the south west slopes. Some conglomerate rock formations in the foreground, Ben Tarvie the nice looking hill behind

Yorjick went to investigate the abandoned cottage at Achineal in his walk report, I made do with this view from a distance

Landing back on the track, this was the view back up my descent route. Next to the track, the lower parts of the hill have been prepared for tree planting

On the other side of the track there was even more extensive tree planting planned, from the track all the way up the slopes of Cnoc Odhar. I fancy coming back here and doing a longer walk going over Cnoc Odhar and Ben Tarvie sometime, might have to do it soon.

Memorial below the crags of Creag an Amalaidh

I just followed the track back to rejoin my original route back to the car. 2 pick-ups towing trailers with saplings came along the track, so planting is definitely underway on the estate. I'd passed the bagged saplings by the lodge near the start of the walk but only really noticed them on the way back having seen the holes dug ready for them. The landscape here will be looking quite different in a few years evidently.

It was an enjoyable wee hill, I'd like to come back and do a longer one incorporating some of the other small hills nearby; Ben Tarvie had looked particularly appealing from the views today. But for now, I decided to head to nearby Dornoch....

Dornoch Walk (Dornoch - Dornoch Point - Embo - Dornoch)
15.5km, 50m, 3hrs

our_route.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts

(Map shows just a rough approximation of the route)
I parked in a free car park in Dornoch and headed out to the south along this road passing through a golf course and going to the airstrip (looking back to Dornoch here)

Heathrow it ain't - the airstrip buildings :)

It's a good spot for birdwatching at some times of the year, but not much seen today

There are a few different worn paths through the sand dunes, I just made my way towards Dornoch Point

View west

A shell collectors paradise on some parts of the beach

Looking back to the sand dunes I'd emerged on to the beach from

West along Dornoch Sands from Dornoch Point

East across Gizzen Briggs (sandbank name according to my OS map!) to Tarbat Ness lighthouse, a dot in the distance

From Dornoch Point I walked back towards Dornoch north along the stunning beach, then continued on the beach towards Embo

Eventually I left the beach and joined a track between the shore and golf course

Way marker sign reached - I'd be taking the railway line route on my return back to Dornoch, but continued to Embo just now

Embo is well known locally for its caravan park. Lovely weather, but a midweek day in March meant there was hardly a soul around, and the touring pitches shown here completely empty. A world away from peak summer!

I went through the caravan park and a short way into the village before heading back and taking the old railway line path back to Dornoch. The Golspie hills to the north looking nice in the evening sun

Back in Dornoch I had a wander around some of the historical info signs and a walk around the outside of the cathedral...

... with its lovely assortment of gargoyles
Posts: 762
Munros:174   Corbetts:74
Grahams:63   Donalds:12
Sub 2000:91   Hewitts:60
Wainwrights:98   Islands:13
Joined: Aug 11, 2015
Location: Inverness

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