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In and out of the cloud in the Correen Hills

In and out of the cloud in the Correen Hills


Postby denfinella » Wed Dec 11, 2013 12:15 pm

Route description: Correen Hills circuit, near Alford

Sub 2000' hills included on this walk: Lord Arthur's Hill

Date walked: 26/10/2013

Time taken: 4 hours

Distance: 15 km

Ascent: 365m

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The Correen Hills are scarcely more than half an hour's drive from Aberdeen but we'd never walked here before. It was a beautiful, crisp autumnal morning as we parked near the friendly-sounding hamlet of Tullynessle. The sun was out but there were a few (unexpected) patches of low cloud covering the hills.

A few tracks meandered through varied scenery - farmland, forestry and open moor - before the more sustained ascent at Fouchie Shank reminded us that this was a hill walk. There were good views back down the valley of the Esset Burn.

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At about the 400m contour the cloud came down to meet us, sweeping silently across the hillside from left to right, and the temperature dropped a few degrees. No summit views from Lord Arthur's Seat today then. Fog adorns a lot of the walk reports on walkhighlands - however, this was only the second time we'd ever experienced in Scotland! The first was Goatfell on Arran.

Just beyond the summit we came across these two birds - snow buntings?

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Just as the track swung right to head due west, the cloud began to clear again, and we were rewarded with a rapidly expanding view over Donside - always a nice sensation when you haven't been able to see anything before.

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We had lunch on Edinbanchory Hill before heading northeast along the broad ridge towards Badingair Hill. The track here was a bit wet underfoot - not a good walk after wet weather - but boots thankfully stayed dry. The going improved on the descent towards Blacklatch Burn and, apart from a few puddles later on, stayed dry as the sun came out again. The cloud finally lifted off Lord Arthur's Seat completely - if we'd done the walk in reverse today, maybe we'd have had a fog-free day. Correen Quarry was worth a short diversion for a poke around the little bothy there.

Before rejoining the outward route, there was a lovely view back down the Esset Burn again. A bit of a misty wander today, but at least it started and ended with some blue skies.

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denfinella
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Posts: 1116
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Joined: Mar 19, 2012
Location: Edinburgh

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