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Meall Chuaich

Meall Chuaich

Postby JonetCol » Fri Aug 26, 2011 2:02 pm

Route description: Meall Chuaich, Drumochter

Munros included on this walk: Meall Chuaich

Date walked: 26/08/2011

Time taken: 4 hours

Distance: 11.2 km

Ascent: 612m

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I chose this walk as it looked a good way to use the rest of the day after a long drive from Newcastle. I parked at the conveniently numbered lay-by '94' on the A9, where I chatted briefly with a cyclist doing John O' Groats to Lands End.

After walking 50m N to go through a gate, I set off up a clear track to a junction. From here I turned left to walk alongside an aqueduct for 2Km, until reaching a small power station fed by a huge overland pipeline.
Meall Chuaich hiddenbehind Stac MC
clearer view from the power station

Ignoring a path to the right, I continued up the shallow glen
towards the loch
to eventually reach the SW end of Loch Chuaich.
from the Loch
The weather was holding nicely but the summit was getting cloud covered. From the loch I took the 2nd path off to the right. This leads into the Allt a'Choire Chuaich and past a locked bothy. After a quick drink I continued along the gently ascending glen, then took a path off to the right, from where the gradient steepened markedly. The path became steeper wider, fainter and stonier. It was also very wet and frequently boggy, making the going very slippy and hard work. At the same time the solitude and tranquility were second to none and the sound of birdsong - and the sight of mountain hares speeding around - made the experience especially enjoyable. Envious of the hare's youth and agility, I continued the hard upward slog, deceived by the numerous 'false' tops you encounter on these rounder hills.

Once at the summit cairn I took a welcome break and enjoyed the views across the upland plateau I had reached.
N from the summit
looking E
To the S
and W
Me at the summit cairn

A large thick cloud descended quite suddenly so I set off back down. Very soon visibility was reduced to nil. I took a bearing and headed off along it. After a few hundred metres I was able to determine exactly where I was - despite the mist - thank heaven (as a new user) for GPS. Another 100m and I got below the cloud to be reassured by the sight of the way back to the SP.
Loch Chuaich and the way back!
Before long I could see the track which led back to the bothy so I headed for it directly and followed it back to the lay-by.
It had been a most enjoyable experience - a great way to shake off the cobwebs of the drive and a good prep for the next day's planned walk of the 4 Drumochter Munros starting from Balsporran.

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Re: Meall Chuaich

Postby Graeme D » Fri Aug 26, 2011 11:00 pm

Nice wee report. Good memories. Never did get around to posting a TR for this one. :o
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Graeme D
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Location: Perth

Re: Meall Chuaich

Postby pollyh33 » Fri Aug 26, 2011 11:10 pm

Smashing report. Not too sure about those ugly pipes! Much prefer your happy happy summit photo :D

Good luck with the weather for next week, I'll look out for your report :)
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