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Unlisted Lochsie Tops

Unlisted Lochsie Tops


Postby weedavie » Sun Mar 31, 2013 11:41 am

Munros included on this walk: Glas Tulaichean

Date walked: 14/03/2013

Time taken: 8.5 hours

Distance: 26 km

Ascent: 1400m

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I’ve got it in for the Munros in the Mounth. They’re dull hummocks, by and large. Tom Buidhe, what’s that about? First time we went there we were coming up from Corrie Fee in the mist. We’d to go in line abreast to locate the so-called summit. It’s such a crossroads spot, too, that I’ve now visited it about five times and only got more irritated.

Coming down the road to Spittal of Glenshee you see, behind the clachan, in contrast to the Mounth, a ridge with well-defined tops. Look at them on the map and they’re Corbett-sized but they don’t figure on the lists. If you follow the ridge round on the map for about five miles from the highest point, you come, without ever quite dropping 500 feet, to Glas Tulaichean. In the very respectable world of the Corbetts, that disqualifies them.

I’d always wanted to check them out so on a day last month when MWIS was saying there would only be visibility beyond the A9, I finally went to see. I parked at the Hotel in Spittal, crossed the road and took the Cateran’s Trail path up the hillside. The Cateran’s Trail looks an interesting outing. As it headed towards An Lairig, I left it to move towards an unnamed top. At this point, the last time I’d have visibility for 6 hours, I took my only photo and put my snowshoes on.
Caterans Trail.jpg
Leaving the Cateran's Trail


In planning the route I’d not bothered counting contour lines and I now realised there was a considerable amount of up and down to do. Ben Earb was next after a dogleg, and I was grateful for the crampon on my snowshoes, going up its steep icy side. It’s 801 metres, not the highest point but certainly the best defined. Dropping towards the relatively narrow ridge to Meall a’Choire Bhuidhe, I reached for my ice-axe, only to realise it was back at the cairn where I’d left it. Only about 50 metres of reascent to retrieve it but I said a few harsh things to myself. I was now encountering a couple of sets of ski-tracks. Someone had done my route in reverse, probably a more sensible option, with the best part of the climbing done early in the day and easier for navigation in the conditions I was experiencing.

Meall a’Choire Bhuidhe is the highest point at 868 metres then Meall Ruigh Mor Thearlaich is quite well defined. The ridge gets a bit obscure after that. As usual when following a compass bearing for a long distance I was cocking up my step-counting. Intermittent fence posts confirmed my line but I wasn’t sure how far I’d come. One way or another, I picked the correct point to go north across the featureless top of Glen Lochsie and felt really smug when I hit the west ridge of Tulaichean perfectly.

The snow was getting deeper and the snowshoes were really justifying themselves. Getting to the summit was eerie as I couldn’t tell sky from ground and this is probably the only point in the route where there’s something to fall over. Going down the south ridge I didn’t count steps and this was stupid as visibility was still non-existent and cloud was now down to about 500 metres. I coped with the swing east of the ridge, got down to the lodge and took off my snowshoes. “Done it!” I thought then realised I’d about 6k to go to the car.

I think this would be an interesting route with visibility, giving good views of an unfamiliar aspect of Ben a’Ghlo. Unfrozen, the head of Glen Lochsie might be a bit of a mess though. Anyway fewer tops to tick but more sense of achievement than in the Mounth.


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weedavie
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Re: Unlisted Lochsie Tops

Postby jmarkb » Mon Apr 01, 2013 10:51 am

Well done for persevering with all that lot in the clag! :clap:
I have done a wee round of Meall a’Choire Bhuidhe, Ben Earb and Meall Uaine (which also fails to be Corbett by lacking about 5m of reascent) a couple of times, having turned up at Spittal and found the weather less good than forecast. They are nice wee hills, quite easy walking, and as you say, quite different in character from others in the area.
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Re: Unlisted Lochsie Tops

Postby BoyVertiginous » Mon Apr 01, 2013 1:00 pm

It does look like a cracker that one, for a good day weather-wise.
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BoyVertiginous
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Re: Unlisted Lochsie Tops

Postby weedavie » Tue Apr 02, 2013 11:16 am

jmarkb wrote:Well done for persevering with all that lot in the clag! :clap:
I have done a wee round of Meall a’Choire Bhuidhe, Ben Earb and Meall Uaine (which also fails to be Corbett by lacking about 5m of reascent) a couple of times, having turned up at Spittal and found the weather less good than forecast. They are nice wee hills, quite easy walking, and as you say, quite different in character from others in the area.

Yes, indeed - I've quite fancied them for years, just from driving down Glenshee. Shame we tend to put things like this away for questionable weather. I feel that's why Ben Chonzie gets an undeservedly poor reputation - people save it for a foul day, then do it by the worst route.
weedavie
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