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Cairnwell 3 - and only us on the piste!

Cairnwell 3 - and only us on the piste!


Postby JimboJim » Mon Apr 20, 2015 9:59 pm

Route description: The Cairnwell Munros

Munros included on this walk: Carn a'Gheoidh, Carn Aosda, The Cairnwell

Date walked: 02/04/2015

Time taken: 4 hours

Distance: 11 km

Ascent: 600m

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Another long jaunt east and early rise, to head for Glenshee, Aberdeenshire! :shock: It was clear on arrival there was going to be a lot of snow, but the weather wasn't looking too bad and the hills not known to be the most taxing, all being well. Although it was only around 9 a.m., it was the Thursday before Easter, but there was hardly a soul around. Strange with the slopes looking so inviting - if you were a skier.
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Looking over to Carn Aosda from The Cairnwell.

We soon struck off for the hexagonal cafe, at the foot of the ski runs down from the first munro, Carn Aosda. Already the snow was knee deep in places, as we spied a couple already near the top. Despite this, we made good progress, though there is not a lot of ascent to the summit, maybe only 250m, which we covered in about 45 minutes, meeting the other couple just leaving the top. From there one can look down on the A93, ski centre and over to The Cairnwell, Carn nan Sac and in the distance, munro No.2, Carn a'Gheoidh, or the one we cannae pronounce, as we pronounced it!
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Looking down on ski centre from Carn Aosda.
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Carn Aosda, towards Cairnwell.
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Yours truly, Carn Aosda.

We cut across near Loch Vrotachan, which lay covered in a sheet of ice and snow, then made it up to the spectacular crags and cornicing of Creag a'Choire Dhirich and some ptarmigan and hares, which also caught the eye. Then a the rather routine, south westerly, hike out to the second top, which required a wee diversion to the north, just to avoid some heavy snow, as we arrived at the top in 2hrs, 5. This top gives one a greater sense of isolation and spectacular views to Beinn a'Ghlo and Glas Tulaichean, where the recent massive avalanche was now barely discernable, if at all.
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Cornicing, Creag a'Choire Dhirich.
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BJ, Creag a'Choire Dhirich.
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The couple from down south on top Creag a'Choire Dhirich.
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Jasper, Carn a'Gheoidh.
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Glas Tulaichean. I think I could just make out line of avalanche through snow, almost direct from summit. (Some good photo's on web.)
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Beinn a'Ghlo behind Glas Tulaichean.

The trip back for The Cairnwell didn't present much of note, other than the wind briefly dropping to allow us time for a quick brew and the chance to admire the crags, view down the Allt a'Choire Dhirich and consider the direct climb up the face of the Cairnwell, from the glen on this side would be a much different proposition.
As it was, we only had to skirt round the edge of the corry and follow the path up to summit number three, 3 and a half hours.
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A more imposing Cairnwell. From the west.
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Pair of Ptarmigan.
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Snow formation.
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Cairnwell cludgie?
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Me and the 'sarcophagus?'
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Jaf on top, Cairnwell.
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The winding tracks of a skier, we followed on a steep descent from The Cairnwell.

After admiring the architecture and quick blether with a couple of chaps, we set off directy down the steep ski run, straight towards base camp 1, following the one set of ski tracks which had gone before. All in, a trip of four hours, which no doubt would have been nearer three and a half, had there not been heavy snow underfoot.
Still, it had been an enjoyablle walk and of course, we stopped off at The George for a snifter on the way home. After all, no one else was on the piste!
Attachments
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I think this was towards Lairig Ghru??
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Creag a'Choire Dhirich.
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Cairn Carn a'Gheoidh, 975m.
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Creag a'Choire Dhirich
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Couple coming back round corry from Carn a'Gheoidh.
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Big Jesper.
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Coming off The Cairnwell.
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Even the artics look arctic. Anderson near bags a munro!
User avatar
JimboJim
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 591
Munros:216   Corbetts:35
Grahams:7   
Sub 2000:20   
Joined: Mar 9, 2012
Location: Lochgilphead

Re: Cairnwell 3 - and only us on the piste!

Postby Big Jesper » Fri Apr 24, 2015 9:32 am

Another fab day, thoroughly enjoyed it.
Big Jesper
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 51
Munros:189   
Joined: Jun 17, 2012

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