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Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow


Postby Del246 » Mon May 07, 2012 9:29 pm

Route description: Beinn Mheadhoin and Derry Cairngorm from Deeside

Munros included on this walk: Beinn Mheadhoin, Derry Cairngorm

Date walked: 06/05/2012

Time taken: 9.5 hours

Distance: 31 km

Ascent: 1211m

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We parked up around 0830 at Linn of Dee hoping to do a circuit of 4 Munros, however we were not expecting as much snow ! Meatball had been in the Mamores a couple of days earlier and there had been none ! We set of on the long walk to Derry Lodge (we are never walking this road again ! ). At the bridge we could see todays first target in the far didtance, a cone of white snow !

P1000100.JPG
Derry Cairngorm in the far distance


We were then passed by 2 fellow WH members on bikes !!

After around 50 minutes we passed Derry Lodge (did I mention we are never walking this again :lol: ) followed the path through the trees and started the long pull up Derry Cairngorm.

P1000103.JPG
Looking back at the long walk in


Soon the cone shaped summit of Derry Cairngorm came into view or was it a false summit ! Meatball seemed to take great delight in telling me " its another false summit ! "

P1000105.JPG
Derry Cairngorm


Whilst I took this picture I noticed it was quite a drop to Glen Derry !!

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Glen Derry


Cairn Toul then came into view as we approached the summit

P1000108.JPG
Cairn Toul


We then hit the snow line and I got some ice axe practice and to pose for some shots as directed by Meatball !!

P1000111.JPG
Action shot !!


We were then on the summit and the views were awesome, with Ben Macdui in the background.

P1000116.JPG
Summit pic


We then headed off towards Beinn Mheadhoin which looked away in the distance.

P1000120.JPG
Beinn Mheadhoin in the distance


Coming off Derry Cairngorm the snow was hard and icey and care was required. Loch Etchachan came into view and have to admit I could of stayed here all day, it was stunning.

P1000121.JPG
Loch Etchachan


However Beinn Mheadhoin was waiting.

P1000123.JPG
Heading towards Beinn Mheadhoin


The conditions were perfect !!

P1000124.JPG
Perfect conditions


There was lots of snow on Beinn Mheadhoin and I had to use my ice axe on the route we took up, it was great fun !!

We were then approaching the summit of Beinn Mheadhoin

P1000127.JPG
Approaching the summit of Beinn Mheadhoin


We were then on the summit and Meatball scrambled up first.

P1000129.JPG
Meatball on the summit


Meatball then comes and down and tells me " there is no point nearly being on the summit". So it was my turn, I took a deep breath (Im still getting my confidence for scrambling and exposure !)

So here are my pictures heading up !!

P1000131.JPG
Starting off !


P1000133.JPG
Meatball shouts "trust your grip!!"


P1000135.JPG
Almost there !!


P1000138.JPG
On the summit of Beinn Mheadhoin


We then started to head down and the views to Loch Etchachan were first class.

P1000142.JPG
Loch Etchachan


P1000148.JPG
Loch Etchachan


As we were leaving Loch Etchachan we spotted 2 walkers heading up Beinn Mheadhoin, can you see them ??

P1000150.JPG
Can you spot the 2 walkers ??


We then started our way down leaving the snow behind and passed the Hutchison Memorial Hut

P1000154.JPG
Hutchison Memorial Hut


We then had a decision to make, 2 Munros or 4 ? Meatball wanted 4 but when I worked out the timings we would not get home until 11 !! I persuaded Meatball to settle for 2 as my wife would not let me back in the house if I turned up at 11, sorry mate !!

We picked up the pace and headed for the long walk back to the car, although the views were still stunning

P1000155.JPG
Stunning views


And we were then treated to some local wildlife !

P1000156.JPG
Local wildlife


Its amazing the difference snow makes, this was one of the best days in the hills I have ever had ! Im starting to love the Cairngorms !!
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Del246
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby LeithySuburbs » Mon May 07, 2012 9:36 pm

Looks a cracking day indeed :) . Lovely clarity to your pics :D .

Remember, walking up Glen Derry allows you to savour it for longer :) .
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby Del246 » Mon May 07, 2012 9:38 pm

LeithySuburbs wrote:Looks a cracking day indeed :) . Lovely clarity to your pics :D .

Remember, walking up Glen Derry allows you to savour it for longer :) .


Cheers, Im getting used to my new camera as recommended by Polly !!
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby PeteR » Mon May 07, 2012 9:41 pm

Superb pictures :D

You had ideal conditions for this trip :D
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby Del246 » Mon May 07, 2012 9:45 pm

Superb pictures

You had ideal conditions for this trip

Thanks, it was a Carlsberg day lol
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby quoman » Mon May 07, 2012 9:47 pm

You had the perfect day by the looks of it.cracking photo's.
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby Del246 » Mon May 07, 2012 9:50 pm

Thanks for that. Still getting used to my new camera but loving it already !!
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby Meatball » Mon May 07, 2012 9:52 pm

A few things to add...
This story starts with del picking those 2 hills, followed by a late night txt from me saying that I had a plan (he loves it when I say that, not!) and to pack extra food. So he didn't really bail out of the 4, he just stuck with plan A. The hills will be there another day.... but he's driving! LOL.
This is the first time I actually needed crampons but hadn't brought them...lesson 1 - pack crampons if unsure, even if it is May.
It was meant to be cloudy, it wasn't...lesson 2 - sunblock in May. The tan lines are comedy genius!
The path to the lodge is nice but I've seen it a few times now, a view from a bike will do from now on!
Descending in deep snow is amazing, it makes me grin thinking about it now.

Most importantly...well done to del on his scramble, he did really well!
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby Bod » Mon May 07, 2012 9:53 pm

Some stunners there, what a great day! :D
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby SusieThePensioner » Mon May 07, 2012 10:01 pm

Great report Derek, and some fantastic photos :thumbup:

Glad you had a good day :D
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby tomyboy73 » Mon May 07, 2012 10:21 pm

well done guys, great pics from what looked like a great day :D
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby Del246 » Tue May 08, 2012 3:10 am

Meatball wrote:A few things to add...
This story starts with del picking those 2 hills, followed by a late night txt from me saying that I had a plan (he loves it when I say that, not!) and to pack extra food. So he didn't really bail out of the 4, he just stuck with plan A. The hills will be there another day.... but he's driving! LOL.
This is the first time I actually needed crampons but hadn't brought them...lesson 1 - pack crampons if unsure, even if it is May.
It was meant to be cloudy, it wasn't...lesson 2 - sunblock in May. The tan lines are comedy genius!
The path to the lodge is nice but I've seen it a few times now, a view from a bike will do from now on!
Descending in deep snow is amazing, it makes me grin thinking about it now.

Most importantly...well done to del on his scramble, he did really well!


Thanks mate, in particular for all the encouragement !! I will always remember the following - sun block and crampons for May :lol:
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby 2dalmatians » Tue May 08, 2012 6:28 am

Loved the report del. how was the scramble back down from the rocky summit. I would be feart of getting stuck at the top! :lol:
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby Del246 » Tue May 08, 2012 7:17 am

Thanks Bod, glad you enjoyed it !
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Re: Cairngorms, A Magical Place in Snow

Postby Gavin99 » Tue May 08, 2012 7:58 am

Lovely stuff , looks like a day to remember , some great photos :D
( I bet you 20p that you do walk that road again !)
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