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A pre-Christmas cracker

A pre-Christmas cracker


Postby joenorris » Sat Dec 10, 2011 8:32 pm

Route description: An Socach from Glen Clunie

Munros included on this walk: An Socach (Braemar)

Date walked: 10/12/2011

Time taken: 6 hours

Distance: 15.6 km

Ascent: 884m

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I've looked across to An Socach from nearly every conceivable angle, and yet still it has evaded me. Anyway, it was with good forecasts in the east (again) that we decided to head up to get out in the snow. I don't have a lot to write today, hopefully the pictures will say it all!

Setting off around 9.30am, there were already two cars parked up, but we could see the weather was on on our side today - the high ground already illuminated by the sun.

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Sgor Mor and Coire Chrid

We decided to head up the eastern ridge of Sgor Mor, so as to get up into the sun and follow a high-level walk to the summit. The snow soon hardened, and after not long we had already got the crampons on for a steep icy slope.

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On the ridge

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Back to Creag nan Gabhar

We met a couple who were on their way down from Sgor Mor at around 10.30, having already been to An Socach. They must have set off extremely early because, as it transpired, it was a bit of a trek to the Munro summit from here. As we gained height, the views to the northern Cairngorms really opened up. Amazingly, all the summits were out of cloud - something I'd never witnessed in this area before.

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The northern Cairngorms

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South towards the Cairnwell

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An Socach and Beinn Iutharn Mor

From Sgor Mor it looked a lot further along to the summit than we'd anticipated, although the snow was still crisp enough not to sink through and the route was obvious, so we did it in good time.

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To the northern Cairngorms

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Beinn Iutharn Mor

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Looking south

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To Loch nan Eun

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The Cairngorms (again)

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Looking south again

We spent a while gorging on the views from the summit. There was, amazingly, almost no wind - perhaps compensating for the 165mph one the previous day. From the summit, we headed back to the 938m top, before heading off the east ridge, Socach Mor, back down to the Baddock Burn. The snow on the descent was much softer: we were in fairly deep powder much of the way down.

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South on the descent

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Lochnagar and Carn an Tuirc from descent

When we eventually reached the glen, it was a simple matter of popping back along a track, a nice way to end a cracking day. The hills around here have never really been the most inspiring to walk in, from my past experience. Today certainly changed that view!


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Last edited by joenorris on Sun Jan 15, 2012 7:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby gammy leg walker » Sat Dec 10, 2011 8:54 pm

WOW WOW WOW stunning pics,have had this one in my site for the last few weeks,next weekend with a wee bit of luck will be the time canny wait.
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby L-Hiking » Sat Dec 10, 2011 9:06 pm

Nice one some great pics..especially the ones with the sunlight

You Jocks have got a lot of snow up there, can we have some down here :)
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby pollyh33 » Sat Dec 10, 2011 9:17 pm

A cracker indeed Joe! I have read and re-read this report about 5 times and it just keeps getting better and better :D :D

Thank-you for delighting us with this early Christmas present XX
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby Graeme D » Sat Dec 10, 2011 9:27 pm

Loch nan Eun is a gem of a place and that shot of it with the snow plastered all around it and all over the mass of Glas Tulaichean behind it......well, it's fair made my day! :D
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby mrssanta » Sat Dec 10, 2011 9:40 pm

I loved this, echo Luvhiking, where's our snow!?
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby magicdin » Sat Dec 10, 2011 10:01 pm

Luvhiking wrote:Nice one some great pics..especially the ones with the sunlight

You Jocks have got a lot of snow up there, can we have some down here :)


Whit - you take our taxes,you take our freedom,you take our OIL,you want our wind powered electricity. and our watter
But you will never take our SNAW - Naw no way
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby joenorris » Sat Dec 10, 2011 11:43 pm

Cheers for the comments guys.

Graeme Dewar wrote:Loch nan Eun is a gem of a place


I have to agree - popped up there en route to Carn an Righ + Beinn Iutharn Mor in the summer. A really secluded spot, great for a wild camp or the like. Glad you liked the photo!

Thanks for all the rest of the comments folks, hopefully you will all manage to get out in these conditions while they last!
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby rockhopper » Sun Dec 11, 2011 12:12 am

What a belter of a day Joe - lovely photos and great weather !

Had my first ever wild camp on the shores of Loch nan Eun back in April this year - would certainly agree with Graeme, brings back memories - cheers :D

PS were you in young musician of the year last year ?
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby joenorris » Sun Dec 11, 2011 12:14 am

Cheers Rockhopper!

rockhopper wrote:PS were you in young musician of the year last year ?


I was! I'm amazed you remember - a musician yourself?
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby malky_c » Sun Dec 11, 2011 12:21 am

I don't have much to say either, but having seen umpteen boring claggy reports for this hill, this is another winner 8)
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby rockhopper » Sun Dec 11, 2011 12:35 am

joenorris wrote:I was! I'm amazed you remember - a musician yourself?
No - just seemed to remember seeing it or reading about it and your name and Perth stuck in my mind being Scottish - then saw your avatar and summary details which states you're from Perth - well done ! You weren't at the same school as Graeme in Perth by any chance ?
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby Johnny Corbett » Sun Dec 11, 2011 10:04 am

Stunning photos Joe, looks like a perfect winters day on the hills :D
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby Johnny Corbett » Sun Dec 11, 2011 10:07 am

Stunning photos Joe, looks like a perfect winters day on the hills :D
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Re: A pre-Christmas cracker

Postby joenorris » Sun Dec 11, 2011 8:59 pm

rockhopper wrote:just seemed to remember seeing it or reading about it and your name and Perth stuck in my mind being Scottish - then saw your avatar and summary details which states you're from Perth - well done !


Cheers bud!

rockhopper wrote:You weren't at the same school as Graeme in Perth by any chance ?


I don't think I was, the name doesn't ring a bell - I was at the academy.

malky_c wrote:I don't have much to say either, but having seen umpteen boring claggy reports for this hill, this is another winner 8)


Cheers Malky - my impression of An Socach was that as well, but it's days like that that make them worth it!
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