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Ben Macdui & Cairngorm

PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 8:51 pm
by StephenT
If we come to Scotland often enough on holiday we will get a good day to go walking, the last good day being Ben Nevis in 2009!
After Saturday gentle warm up today was the perfect day for myself, Vicky and Thomas to tackle Ben Macdui and Cairngorm. Hardly a cloud in the sky and not too warm :D

BenMacdui.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts

Setting of from the ski centre down the steps and follow the track in a SW direction keeping the great slab on your left
Great Slab

Height is gained very quickly and soon the views across the Lairig Ghru open up to reveal Braerich, Cairn Toul etc, places I havent visited but are now definately on the "to do" list :D
Looking across the Lairg Ghru

The trek across the plateau to Ben Macdui is fairly straightforward and the view to the right keep you occupied but keeping your eyes on where youre feet are across the boulders is more important!
Boulderfield on Ben Macdui

Moonscape of Ben Macdui

Navigation at this point is made easy by just follow the cairns to the summit! We reached the summit in only 2hr 45min and the views were spectacular. Somehow I had lost my sunglasses on the way but the walker following us had picked them up for me :clap:
At least we know where we are if he falls off!
Ben Macdui summit

Hopefully the link to the video will work!
Time for a bit of a wander round for the views and some dinner
Looking down Glen Dee from Ben Macdui


The route over to Cairngorm is a reverse of the way up Ben Macdui and turn right at the small Lochan Buidhe and follow the well worn path over the plateau towards Cairngorm. On the way down Ben Macdui we passed a small herd of reindeer roaming free, not something we were expecting!
Reindeer roaming free on Ben Macdui


The track takes you close to the edges of the corries visible at the beginning of the walk and some great views back down towards Aviemore


After a final pull up to the summit of Cairngorm we were met by lots of people who had obviously come up on the train - trainers and carrier bags are always a give away!
Vicky, knackered at top of Cairngorm

The route down from the summit is fairly obvious follow the cairns that are every few metres! and then the path between the blue ropes (so you cant get lost! :lol: )
At the Ptarmigan Station go to the right of the building and follow the track adjacent to the ski lift.
On the way down we were passed by several children running down the path :crazy: and no surprise in a few minutes we were stopped by their parents asking (in a German Accent) if we had any plasters as one had fallen over and gashed their arm. Doing our bit for international relations we patched him up as best we could and carried on.
Overall the walk took us 7hrs but had plenty of stops for food/drink and photos, the GPS said only 5 1/2hrs walking. However, the path down Cairngorm is very hard on the knees and if we had gone up that way we probably wouldn't have carried on all the way round as none of us like walking up the man made steps/paths. The WH route allows you to gain height quickly with not too much effort, and once it is gained not much height is lost throughout the day.

Re: Ben Macdui & Cairngorm

PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 8:57 pm
by Johnny Corbett
Great stuff, did this route myself in not such good weather so nice to see the views. Your wife must have caught that Munro bug now :lol:

Re: Ben Macdui & Cairngorm

PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2012 9:03 pm
by StephenT
Johnny Corbett wrote:Great stuff, did this route myself in not such good weather so nice to see the views. Your wife must have caught that Munro bug now :lol:

She is now on 6, after 5 last week!
I've suggested getting back up to Scotland in October half term and it wasn't a no :thumbup: : just need to find some easier munros, nice weather and good accomodation !! could struggle with the weather :lol: