I set off from the car park at Inverey by bike, and due to the warm weather soon had to remove my fleece, which was never needed again for the whole day. There were a couple of short steepish ascents early on, but generally the track was fairly flat and quite an easy cycle. Mind you, my bike isn't a mountain bike, so I had to keep the speed down to minimise the risk of punctures on the small stones used to maintain parts of the track. Even cycling at a subdued pace, the bike clearly seemed the right choice as I passed people on foot. leaving them miles behind.
After an hour's cycle, I left the bike at the end of the made up track just past Altanour Lodge, and set off on foot along the rough vehicle track towards Càrn Bhac.
It was quite easy going, and at the top there were good views of the Cairngorms in the distance as I had some lunch.
After lunch, it was down the broad summit ridge before descending towards Beinn Iutharn Mhòr.
There was no obvious path to follow, but rather it was an obstacle course over peat hags. Luckily, there hadn't been too much rain recently, so I still had dry feet by the time I started the climb up Beinn Iutharn Mhòr. I went straight up to its shoulder, which involved going up some scree. The scree was quite stable so it wasn't difficult, but it could have been avoided by first traversing south west before climbing. Once on the shoulder, it was a straightforward walk along to the top.
Next, I followed the path heading down towards Mam nan Càrn, branching off at its lowest point to head towards Càrn an Rìgh.
A path traverses the hill down to the highest point between the two hills, where it meets the path up Càrn an Rìgh. By this time, I didn't fancy adding to the climb by taking a more direct route, which would have incurred a significantly greater descent! Then it was a good climb up, trying not to overheat on the warm April day, and passing a few groups of people coming down. By the time I got to the top I was ready for more food to keep me going on the long walk back. After turning my back on Beinn a' Ghlò in the distance, I retraced my steps down to the pass at the foot of Mam nan Càrn.
It was now 4.30pm and the place was deserted - I didn't see anybody else except distant campers from then on. This time, I took the rough path to the right, along the bottom of Mam nan Càrn and Beinn Iutharn Bheag towards Loch nan Eun. The path continued gradually upwards, and shortly before the highest point, it passed an idyllic spot with still water and short grass. Then, over the watershed, Loch nan Eun came into view. It was well worth taking this route to see what turned out to be a much more attractive loch than I had expected.
From now on there was no path, and it was 2 miles of rough ground, peat hags and bogs following the Allt Cac Dubh past An Socach. A few mountain hares were my only company, apart from the grouse which popped out at intervals throughout the walk. After the burn joined Allt Beinn Iutharn there were some bits of track, but they disappeared and I still ended up mostly crossing rough ground (less boggy now) until half a mile from Altanour Lodge, where I found another vehicle track. It was a relief when I finally reached my bike. From now on, it was gently downhill all the way. So much better at the end of a long day than 6 more miles to walk!
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Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.