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Getting back on the bike....

Getting back on the bike....


Postby PeteR » Tue Oct 11, 2011 11:05 pm

Route description: Carn a'Mhaim from the Linn of Dee

Munros included on this walk: Carn a'Mhaim

Date walked: 08/10/2011

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They say the best thing to do when you fall off your bike is to pick yourself up, get back on and start peddling. Metaphorically I'd taken a tumble in hill walking terms the weekend before on the South Glen Shiel ridge, so on Saturday it was time to get back in the hill walking saddle and get a small success under my belt.

Hill of choice – Carn a Mhaim.

This looked a good choice as it was a straightforward walk in itself and had the option of an extension (if the weather was reasonable) to Ben Macdui in search of the Big Grey Man and then returning via Derry Cairngorm

MWIS forecast for Saturday 8 October – reasonable early on, and my interpretation being that cloud would be high early on, and then deteriorating later.

The day started well. Turned up at the Linn of Dee car park at 7.30 ready for the off. There’s a £2 parking charge. No change :( Couldn’t not pay, so back Braemar to buy some sweets I didn’t need so that I had the required £2. Then back to the start.

It’s 8 am now, but at least I set off with a clear conscience with my ticket proudly displayed on the dashboard :lol: :lol:

I’ve got to say that, but for a couple of sections beyond Derry Lodge, this has to be one of the best approach routes to a hill that I’ve been along for some time. An initial forest track and section of boarding leads to a landrover track into Glen Lui........ a cracking glen to walk in :D :D
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Start of the walk

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Treading the boards

The landrover track is excellent and easy going all the way to Derry Lodge. Unfortunately the views were suggesting the cloud was a bit more extensive than I’d hoped. A bit lower too and suggesting it wasn’t going to improve anytime soon :( :(
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"Cloud free" not looking hopeful

Arrived at Derry Lodge in what seemed to be no time at all.
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Derry Lodge

Sad to see it all boarded up, as it is in a wonderful setting and you’d surely think it could be put to good use somehow :shock: :?

Up till now I’d only seen a small group who had passed me on their mountain bikes as I was walking toward the Lodge. All bar one had blanked me too as they passed which I’d thought was pretty bad form. “Manners cost nothing” as my dear old mother would have said, but hey-ho :( :lol:

As I was busy taking pictures of the Lodge I suddenly heard voices and a couple of chaps appeared from the other side of the Lodge. They’d been camping there the night and were hoping to do the Devil’s you-know-what :lol: :lol: so we ended up walking together up to the point I was heading off the main path and onto Carn a Mhaim.

Just after crossing the bridge at the Lodge had the first encounter with my old walking companion......peat bog :lol: :lol:
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Bridge at Derry Lodge

Lovely it was, all black and squelchy :lol: :( :shock:

Fortunately it was soon replaced by excellent path, which gave a nice route through Glen Luibeg
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Glen Luibeg

And a first sight of my destination.......Carn a Mhaim :D
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Carn a Mhaim.....and early view

A bit cloud covered, but that didn’t matter. Today was as much about a personal therapy session as it was about anything else.

Arriving at the point where the Luibeg Burn needs to be crossed my destination looked much more interesting
DSCF3517.JPG
Carn a Mhaim a little closer up

The choice. Take the shortcut and ford the burn, or take a slightly longer route and take the footbridge. The decision was the footbridge. The result was a bog fest to rival Beinn Dubhchraig :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: Eventually arrived at the footbridge, where the water coming down the burn was captivating 8)
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Luibeg Burn

Could easily have stayed here a while, but it was a case of onward and upward. My temporary walking companions continued off to the Devil’s thingy, while I started on up the path to Carn a Mhaim.

All the way to the summit the path was excellent and certainly lower down was well maintained. My destination was poking out the top ahead of me.
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Start of path up Carn a Mhaim


After an initially easy start there was a nice steeper section which slowed me up a bit. It was at this point that I headed off into the mist, from which I wouldn’t return from until I was back on my down a little later.
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Hill path up Carn a Mhaim

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On Carn a Mhaim

Approaching the summit there were some interesting, sparse rock features. I’m sure these would have looked even better in sunshine 8) 8)
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Close to the summit

And then I was at the summit
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Summit Cairn

Given the mist and the expectation the weather was expected to deteriorate I had already decided not to go in search of the Big Grey Man, but to leave him for another day. I did though want to have a little walk in that general direction and see what the narrow ridge linking the hill to Ben Macdui looked like.
DSCF3553.JPG
Route to Ben Macdui

At this point I was aware that if I didn’t stop and turn round I would end up doing the full horseshoe route, which I wasn’t really in the mood for. I’d bagged one as part of my self help treatment and so common sense prevailed and I was heading back the way I had come. I decided to take the short detour to the south east top before locating the path and heading back.
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View back down the route

Arriving back at the Luibeg Burn and there were good views down the glen, despite the now deteriorating weather.
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Approaching Luibeg burn

As well as back to Carn a Mhaim
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Carn a Mhaim.....one last time

The next picture doesn’t really capture the bog fest toward the footbridge I crossed earlier
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Bog trot anyone?

But I had decided to attempt a ford of the burn instead. It couldn’t be that tough, could it?
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Heading to the Luibeg ford

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To cross, or not to cross? an easy decision!!

Standing looking across the burn I decided it might well be tougher than I had imagined :lol: :shock: :lol: :shock: The water looked deeper than I was expecting and it struck me this was ideal territory for me to slip in and end up with more than just wet feet.

So, it was another bog trot back to the footbridge
DSCF3583.JPG
Luibeg footbridge

And a study on a dead tree
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Tree

And then the resulting bog fest back the other side until I made it back to the main path.
From there it was plain sailing back to Derry Lodge. On the way I managed to catch up with my walking companions from earlier. It seemed they hadn’t managed to make it up the Devil’s Point, as they had some beers with their names on back in Dundee.

I left them at the Lodge as I was wanting to frog march myself back to the car, from where it was a trip into Braemar for a portion of chips and then the drive home.

Initially I had thought Carn a Mhaim might be a bit of a piddly hill when compared to its more illustrious neighbours, but I think I did it a disservice. I enjoyed this walk and can see me heading back this way to tackle it again as part of the round with Macdui and Derry Carngorm sometime soon :D :D :D
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby pollyh33 » Tue Oct 11, 2011 11:20 pm

Well done Pete for getting back into the swing of things again so quickly :clap:

Another smashing report with loads of useful detail and photos :D

If its any consolation I got blanked at the top of Mayar today- weirdo!!! :lol:
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby Johnny Corbett » Wed Oct 12, 2011 10:26 am

Still to do this one and been swithering whether to do it on it's own or the horseshoe and after seeing the narrow ridge i think it' got to be the horseshoe. Thanks Pete :D
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby KGBMC » Wed Oct 12, 2011 3:16 pm

Good report Johnny, I know how you feel, I fell of the bike at Loch Garry two months ago and required 4 stitches in knee

Glad we stopped to crack with you on our way out from the bothy a month ago , hate to be classed as a "blanker" ive often been called its near neighbour
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby Johnny Corbett » Wed Oct 12, 2011 4:30 pm

KGBMC wrote:Good report Johnny, I know how you feel, I fell of the bike at Loch Garry two months ago and required 4 stitches in knee

Glad we stopped to crack with you on our way out from the bothy a month ago , hate to be classed as a "blanker" ive often been called its near neighbour


Yes it was good chatting to you guys, though this is Pete's report so credit goes to Pete :D I've been a victim also of a bike accident, breaking my collar bone a couple of years ago :(
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby KGBMC » Wed Oct 12, 2011 5:37 pm

Sorry Pete for getting confused between you and Johnny, great report

Perhaps thats why I get called the other name :lol:
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby pigeon » Wed Oct 12, 2011 7:52 pm

Great report Pete ,know all about the bogs up there :( Pity about the lack of views at the top,good excuse to go back though.Remember some change next time :lol:
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby Bod » Thu Oct 13, 2011 12:40 am

:D Cheers Pete, thanks for this report. Brings me back seeing Derry Lodge to a School trip when we camped for a week. I have been planning a revisit to the Cairngorms and you have probably accelerated that. As for the Blankers, well I pity them......do you fancy joining the WH meet next year in Kintail.....I'm sure you would love it! Check out the forum. All the best.. :D ...
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby porty » Thu Oct 13, 2011 4:05 am

Nice report Peter. You've just helped me choose my next solo excursion to the hills. Will hope for a bit less bogginess though.
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby MarilynMunro » Thu Oct 13, 2011 7:38 am

Cheers Pete, liked the report and the amount of detail, could alomost do without my printed maps... only kidding. A friend recently did the Lairig Ghru, yours and his photos and info have really got me interested in this part of the country, not sure if I ll manage it this year now as I'm a bit of a fair weather walker(Don't do snow .... yet).
Think you might have a bit of a thing for bog...... :lol:
Thanks again
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby ChrisW » Thu Oct 13, 2011 8:41 am

Great stuff Pete, that 'going back for change' business is a real pain, I did it at Loch Muick once, decided 6 miles of single track road was to much so just left the car (with no problems) A few weeks later I told the ranger bloke who is occasionally wandering about down there and offered payment he said don't worry about it, the pay and display cannot be enforced it is just a request for funds to maintain the place :D
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby davetherave » Thu Oct 13, 2011 11:39 am

I hope the personal therapy worked peter!

Another detailed report.well done.

Sorry I never commented on your south shiel ridge report.
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby iainwatson » Thu Oct 13, 2011 3:21 pm

fantastic report,very detailed and good pics showing the way :D

this hill sticks out for me as its the only mountain i've ever camped on and i got a great cloud inversion looking over to devils point first thing in the morning
i'm with you about the lodge.........seems such a waste in an area that so many people walk in,surely it could be opened up again as a bunkhouse/bothy
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby PeteR » Thu Oct 13, 2011 9:43 pm

pollyh33 wrote:Well done Pete for getting back into the swing of things again so quickly :clap:

Another smashing report with loads of useful detail and photos :D

If its any consolation I got blanked at the top of Mayar today- weirdo!!! :lol:

Thanks Polly. I see on your latest report you've started quite a debate on blankers :lol: :lol: If we ever meet on the hills I think I'll have to be especially cheery :lol: :lol:

Johnny Corbett wrote:Still to do this one and been swithering whether to do it on it's own or the horseshoe and after seeing the narrow ridge i think it' got to be the horseshoe. Thanks Pete :D

It would have to be the horseshoe JC. That's what I would have done had the weather and forecast been a bit better on the day. But, in true Arnie style - "i'll be back..." :D

pigeon wrote:Great report Pete ,know all about the bogs up there :( Pity about the lack of views at the top,good excuse to go back though.Remember some change next time :lol:

Thanks Pigeon. I usually have bags of change on me. And never need it. The one time I do need it and I had all of 20p :lol:

Bod wrote::D Cheers Pete, thanks for this report. Brings me back seeing Derry Lodge to a School trip when we camped for a week. I have been planning a revisit to the Cairngorms and you have probably accelerated that. As for the Blankers, well I pity them......do you fancy joining the WH meet next year in Kintail.....I'm sure you would love it! Check out the forum. All the best.. :D ...

Thanks Bod. Took a look at the WH Kintail meet, but unfortunately it coincides with my two young lads coming up for the week. Fortunately though I get to spend a week with my two young lads :D :D, so that's all good. I definitely should inflict my slow, plodding pace on a WH meet some time soon though, and also see if there's any chance of an ale drinking contest or two to be had along the way :lol: :lol:. Maybe next time....

porty wrote:Nice report Peter. You've just helped me choose my next solo excursion to the hills. Will hope for a bit less bogginess though.

Just keep telling yourself Porty "Bog is good........bog is good......bog is....." :D :lol:

MarilynMunro wrote:Cheers Pete, liked the report and the amount of detail, could alomost do without my printed maps... only kidding. A friend recently did the Lairig Ghru, yours and his photos and info have really got me interested in this part of the country, not sure if I ll manage it this year now as I'm a bit of a fair weather walker(Don't do snow .... yet).

MM, you can't beat walking in the snow. A whole new walking experience. I can't wait for it to arrive .... 8) :D

ChrisW wrote:Great stuff Pete, that 'going back for change' business is a real pain, I did it at Loch Muick once, decided 6 miles of single track road was to much so just left the car (with no problems) A few weeks later I told the ranger bloke who is occasionally wandering about down there and offered payment he said don't worry about it, the pay and display cannot be enforced it is just a request for funds to maintain the place :D

Cheers Chris. I blame my parents :lol: Brought me up honest and I couldn't bring myself to not pay....in case they came back to haunt me :lol: :lol:

davetherave wrote:I hope the personal therapy worked peter!

Think I'm cured Dave. If my plans for Sunday work out then I certainly will be :lol: :lol:

iainwatson wrote:fantastic report,very detailed and good pics showing the way :D

this hill sticks out for me as its the only mountain i've ever camped on and i got a great cloud inversion looking over to devils point first thing in the morning
i'm with you about the lodge.........seems such a waste in an area that so many people walk in,surely it could be opened up again as a bunkhouse/bothy

Cheers Ian. I underestimated how much I'd enjoy this one, but it was a cracking walk. And I agree on the Lodge. I reckon it would be a popular place. Great setting, and loads of walking options for everyone
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Re: Getting back on the bike....

Postby skuk007 » Mon Oct 17, 2011 2:31 pm

Another good report Pete, glad your still getting out there. I did this in June this year (report) so it is definitely worth going back on a clear day, but I remember the path above the bridge was a bog fest even in the heat.
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