An Socach (Braemar)
by mountain-ju-drop » Wed May 18, 2011 8:02 pm
Route description: An Socach from Glen Clunie
Munros included on this walk: An Socach (Braemar)
Date walked: 18/05/2011
Time taken: 4.5 hours
Distance: 15.2 km
Ascent: 655m2 people think this report is great. Register or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
My first attempt at this hill was last October. That day I was with the family and it had snowed overnight, much to the excitement of all (little did we know then what lay ahead for the rest of the winter and how, if we ever saw snow again, it would be too soon!) We wandered along, enjoying the crisp, cold morning and spotting the deer - who seemed to be shouting "Here I am shoot me!" to any passing stalkers.
Anyway that day two youngest got so wet and cold from playing in the snow they were not up for it when it came to going up to the top so we went back to the car whilst husband and older son bagged the summit.
So here I was, back again 6 months later, alone and determined and enjoying the only day for weeks without gale force winds blowing across the tops. I parked the car and by 7.15am, banana in hand, I was off.
So, after taking some snaps of the abundance of wild pansies, I head off over the bridge and make good progress a long the track.
Last time we walked right along the track to approach the hill mid way, this time I decided on the route up starting by the Allt Coire Fhearnseag. The path was evident on both sides of the water, I went up the right bank for short way and crossed just in front of the small waterfall.
I then followed the path up the heathery hill side to the monumental cairn. The path was easy to follow and altho quite wet in places, easily handled by short detours here and there, and I'm a bogophobic (a condition I developed from living near the Peak District whilst studying and hearing scare stories about what awful and certain death awaited you if you wandered off path on the peat hags of Kinder Scout....)
The next section was a bit boggy and required a little more skirting around - those without bogophobic tendancies would probably just march on through - until the gradient steepened and the ground became rockier. At this point my phone reception returned for about 90 seconds!
Before very long I was up in view of the east top with views widening in all directions. Unfortunately the cloud base was such that the higher hills to the north were covered, otherwise visibility was excellent, extending to the hills by Kinross.
The stroll along the summit ridge to the west top was fab. No one around just the views of the Glen Shee hills - i have climbed all these and great to see them from a different view - and good to get a closer view of the hills I have yet to attempt in the area.
Check out ChrisW's report for far better summit photos than mine!
It was now 9.30am - a bit early for lunch! - so I decided on tea and a scone in the shelter instead.
Bizarrely - despite gale force winds all week and some gusts whilst I was walking up - the top was very calm.
I walked back down the way I had come - the October experience suggested bog for part of the descent from the mid way along the ridge - and as the way up was so enjoyable why go another way!
By the way why is this hill so often described as pathless??? There are good paths all the way and sometimes too many to choose from!
I was back at the car well before 12pm having only seen 4 other people - the joys of mid week walking.
I thoroughly enjoyed the walk - An Socach has a sense of such quiet remoteness and yet isn't at all difficult to reach.
by ChrisW » Wed May 18, 2011 8:16 pm
Isn't it great wandering around on that huge flat top when there are no other walkers about....as you rightly say - the joys of midweek walking
by andyroog » Wed May 18, 2011 8:30 pm
by kamikazemountaingoat » Wed May 18, 2011 9:02 pm
by kevsbald » Wed May 18, 2011 9:47 pm
by rockhopper » Wed May 18, 2011 11:27 pm
by mmill » Thu May 19, 2011 8:34 pm
by Graeme D » Thu May 19, 2011 10:40 pm
mountain-ju-drop wrote:It was now 9.30am - a bit early for lunch!
Nah, never too early for lunch on the hill! A fine debut report there. Welcome on board!