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Loch Ordie on Ice

Loch Ordie on Ice


Postby Gargantuan Tribe » Wed Apr 03, 2013 8:45 am

Route description: Loch Ordie and Deuchary Hill, Dunkeld

Sub 2000' hills included on this walk: Deuchary Hill

Date walked: 03/04/2013

Time taken: 7 hours

Distance: 21.6 km

Ascent: 563m

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Knowing there would be a risk of snow still lying at low altitudes we decided that a walk not involving a great climb but a nice distance to take advantage of the good weather would be just the thing so the walk from Cally car park in Atholl Estate to Loch Ordie and back (taking in Deuchary Hill as a detour) was chosen the night before.
Getting to the car park just before ten am we knew we had plenty of time to get the whole circular route done and so we set off in good cheer and in good weather - a few snowflakes don't count! This being the first day after the Easter break there were plenty of bootprints frozen into the once muddy path, along with remnants of the Easter Egg hunt that had been taking place.
Following the path through the trees, past Upper Hatton B & B with its resident peacock (noticeably silent, unlike the woodpecker giving it plenty somewhere in the trees) and then reaching The Glack (a kennels which was obvious from quite a distance) we turned through the metal gate to the left past a reticent group of what we assumed to be Duke of Edinburgh teens - their bizarre behaviour of not being able to look at us was all we had to go on!
We turned right at the Mill Dam and headed steadily uphill, here the path became a mixture of snow and mud, then more mud as we reached areas that had been more seriously affected by snowmelt. After a sharp turn to the right there was a small but clear trail leading off up to the summit of Deuchary Hill and so off we went! It soon turned out that this hill was going to be more of a challenge than we thought, especially with the intermittent snow, as it went up at quite a steep rate. We were rewarded just below the summit however as the silhouette of a stag, antlers and all was framed on the hill ridge looking down at us (intruders). After a while of looking at each other, the stag had got tired of us and moved off to pastures new allowing us to continue to the summit and the trig point. The top was soon reached and the views were outstanding, we were distantly surrounded by a ring of white covered peaks in all directions, with small frozen lochs dotted in the moors in between.
Ten minutes later we were on our way down again as despite the warm thermos of tea we couldn't ignore the freezing temperatures and so moving was the best way to keep warm. We retraced our steps back to where we left the main track and then made our way over to the road to Riemore Lodge. After about a mile we saw another deer on the hillside and whilst we were watching it (and it observing us), a large section of the hillside around it began to move and we realised that we were looking at a herd of red deer rather than one but their winter camouflage is so good we just hadn't seen them! As it was the whole group eventually wandered over the nearby ridge and out of sight just as a pair of fellow walkers came up the path - but they were just too late to see the deer (I felt slightly guilty for scaring them off, but only slightly).
Once on to the paved road to Loch Ordie the going got easier and with only sheep for company, finding the patches of grass amongst the snow to forage on, we soon arrived at the loch, frozen completely over and beautifully encapsulated in a bowl of frozen hill tops. With the clearing blue sky, the occasional bleating from the path behind us and no sign yet of the boathouse and Lochordie Lodge, we could have been forgiven for thinking we were somewhere on the Tibetan plateau rather than Perthshire!
Tramping over the frozen ruts of mountain bikers past, we passed behind the lodge and then made the left turn after crossing the raucous Dowally Burn and finally started to head back towards Cally car park - our feet were already feeling it so it was good to be in the knowledge that we were definitely on the return leg! Passing wonderful icicle formations, caused both by the splashing of the burn and the dripping of meltwater from overhanging moss, it was hard to remember that it was April, although the warmth of the sun when it did break through the clouds was a helpful reminder!
Getting close to Raor Lodge we disturbed a pair of Lapwings who ran slightly out of our way and then peered at us over a grassy bank and then it was through a motley (but wonderfully gregarious) collection of free range chickens, turkeys and ducks whose clucking and quacking followed us through the air as we made our way past the very frozen Dowally and Rotwell Lochs. Another sighting of a deer in the trees who quite calmly stepped away as we walked along the path and then it was over more frozen ruts (this time caused by the behemoths from the Landrover Experience) and back to the car - though not without more deer in the trees and great views back to Deuchary Hill, reminding me just how far we had trekked today, although my feet were doing a good job of that!
Back at the car we reflected over the walk with a further drink from the thermos and decided that it had been a good day and one well worth repeating in the full bloom of summer when there would be flowers en masse to appreciate too (though there might be more than a handful of people)!
Gargantuan Tribe
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Re: Loch Ordie on Ice

Postby The Rodmiester » Wed Apr 03, 2013 9:01 am

Fine wee read there, shame there's no photographs. Somebody forgot the camera maybe? :) Wanted to see conditions of track and also Deuchary hill as this one and the one at the back is on my radar.
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Re: Loch Ordie on Ice

Postby Gordie12 » Wed Apr 03, 2013 8:27 pm

My boot prints must have been in there somewhere from the day before you!!

I wondered what all the sawdust arrows were for.
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Re: Loch Ordie on Ice

Postby Gargantuan Tribe » Thu Apr 04, 2013 7:50 pm

Thanks for reading! Rodmiester: I had the camera but forgot to ensure there was any power - two poor photos was all I ended up with!
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Re: Loch Ordie on Ice

Postby Gordie12 » Fri Apr 05, 2013 5:32 pm

The Rodmiester wrote:Fine wee read there, shame there's no photographs. Somebody forgot the camera maybe? :) Wanted to see conditions of track and also Deuchary hill as this one and the one at the back is on my radar.


Snow update for you Rod.

Deuchary Hill.jpg
Deuchary Hill from the south


Deuchary Hill from Loch Ordie.jpg
Deuchary Hill from the north (Loch Ordie)


Track.jpg
Track by Lochan Oisinneach Mor


Towards Creag nam Mial from Lochan Oisinneach Mor.jpg
Towards Creag nam Mial from Lochan Oisinneach Mor


While I'm adding photos, my two pals were more sociable than last week...........

My Mate 1.jpg
Pal 1


My Mate 2.jpg
Pal 2
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Re: Loch Ordie on Ice

Postby The Rodmiester » Fri Apr 05, 2013 6:02 pm

Gordie12 wrote:
The Rodmiester wrote:Fine wee read there, shame there's no photographs. Somebody forgot the camera maybe? :) Wanted to see conditions of track and also Deuchary hill as this one and the one at the back is on my radar.


Snow update for you Rod.

Deuchary Hill.jpg


Deuchary Hill from Loch Ordie.jpg


Track.jpg


Towards Creag nam Mial from Lochan Oisinneach Mor.jpg


While I'm adding photos, my two pals were more sociable than last week...........

My Mate 1.jpg


My Mate 2.jpg


Thanks for that Gordie, I like your two mates :) , love lovely must take a couple of apples with me when I go. Should have been there today but had a tumble on the Lomonds of all places and bruised my ribs, so restricted to a bit of painting DIY just now, missing all this good weather, doing my head in :crazy:
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Re: Loch Ordie on Ice

Postby gmr82 » Fri Apr 05, 2013 6:21 pm

Thanks for the report GT, good to see others also going out to enjoy this area, such a difference up there having walked Donalds and southern subs all winter


Rodmiester, I walked Deuchary Hill on Sunday past (funnily enough due to the chat about it from Gordie12's adventures - couldn't hold off any longer!). Patchy snow from Mill Dam approaching Deuchary from the south but easy going walking. So much so that I had thoughts of Creag nam Mial again (promptly disregarded as only had OS368 - settled on Birnam), but descending NW back to the track was harder going. 3 - 6 inches in places.

Saw the sawdust arrows Gordie12 - there was a hill running race over Deuchary on Sunday

Image
From Lochan na Beinne
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Re: Loch Ordie on Ice

Postby The Rodmiester » Fri Apr 05, 2013 6:40 pm

gmr82 wrote:Thanks for the report GT, good to see others also going out to enjoy this area, such a difference up there having walked Donalds and southern subs all winter


Rodmiester, I walked Deuchary Hill on Sunday past (funnily enough due to the chat about it from Gordie12's adventures - couldn't hold off any longer!). Patchy snow from Mill Dam approaching Deuchary from the south but easy going walking. So much so that I had thoughts of Creag nam Mial again (promptly disregarded as only had OS368 - settled on Birnam), but descending NW back to the track was harder going. 3 - 6 inches in places.

Saw the sawdust arrows Gordie12 - there was a hill running race over Deuchary on Sunday

Image
From Lochan na Beinne

Great stuff there gmr82, thanks! :D Once I'm on the mend I'll be out there. It doesn't seem like two years ago I was supporting my daughter in the Deuchary Hill race, time flys by, when you get my age :(
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Location: Carnoustie

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