49,587 steps in the Cairngorms
by Fife Flyer » Sun May 03, 2015 3:19 pm
Route description: Beinn Mheadhoin and Derry Cairngorm from Deeside
Munros included on this walk: Beinn Mheadhoin, Derry Cairngorm
Date walked: 01/05/2015
Time taken: 9.9 hours
Distance: 32 km
Ascent: 1500m7 people think this report is great. Register or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
Watching the weather forecast and the first promising day for the best part of a week, decision was made to hit the hills. The forecast looked slightly better in the east so I scanned over the Cairngorm routes and opted to tackle Beinn Mheadhoin and Derry Cairngorm.
Karen contacted me and offered to tag along, we are both conscious to try and get fit for our imminent trip to Skye in a couple of weeks
We knew we were in for a long day and it certainly turned out that way, having surveyed the hills from a distance we decided to leave the winter gear in the car
We had agreed to meet in Perth (as usual) and Karen would act as co-pilot and arrived at the Linn of Dee car park just after 8.30am.
DSCF1245 by martin_beswick, Car park through the trees
DSCF1247 by martin_beswick, Nice wooden path
DSCF1251 by martin_beswick, Karen in the distance, taking some of her 49,500 steps
In respect of the title, it was Karen that took all those steps, I probably took slightly more than half
DSCF1252 by martin_beswick, the hills peeking above the trees
DSCF1259 by martin_beswick, hills getting slightly nearer
DSCF1258 by martin_beswick, Karen demonstrating her balancing skills
DSCF1266 by martin_beswick, Rain forest in Scotland?
The path to Derry Lodge is a good wide track and quite a bit of time could be saved by using a two wheeled pedaling machine It seems such a shame that what looks like a good solid building is standing empty with all the numerous windows boarded up, would be a great place for a bunk house
Once Derry Lodge is reached we turned right up a smaller path that avoids crossing Derry Burn, we did admire the new bridge and for a temporary structure looked pretty good to me
In the distance we saw a couple of figures who we caught up with fairly quickly, mainly because of the handicap difference They were planning to camp/bothy over the weekend, hope you guys managed to stay dry
The path then winds it's way along through Glen Derry, when it eventually splits, we took the left hand fork which took us over a 'simple' bridge
DSCF1275 by martin_beswick, Path, even I couldn't lose it
DSCF1276 by martin_beswick, nice little bridge
DSCF1277 by martin_beswick, Concentration
DSCF1283 by martin_beswick, as we reached the top of Glen Derry the path then turned left into Coire Etchachan
DSCF1289 by martin_beswick, Coire Etchachan, with the wee bothy barely visible
DSCF1290 by martin_beswick, Zoomed shot
DSCF1293 by martin_beswick, Is there a more sheltered bothy?
DSCF1297 by martin_beswick, Picking our way up to the bealach, superb backdrop
DSCF1294 by martin_beswick, Karen enjoying the snow, would it last
Once the bothy was reached, we had a peek inside It was at that time we reached the snow level and from then on it just varied in depth Loch Etchachan looked really picturesque, partly frozen and partly snow covered, hopefully the photo's will do it justice
DSCF1304 by martin_beswick, Loch Etchachan
DSCF1306 by martin_beswick, slightly different angle
DSCF1309 by martin_beswick, Looking down on the Loch, the weather was doing it's best to interfere
DSCF1312 by martin_beswick, Weather interference again
DSCF1313 by martin_beswick, Not sure what Karen was taking a picture of
The climb up Stob Coire Etchachan to the barns of Beinn Mheadhoin was tough going, I tried to avoid any deep snow, however that is far easier said than done and as I was trail blazing it was just a matter of picking our way up.
One thing I haven't mentioned is the numerous times we stopped either to remove layers, add layers, add jacket, remove jacket - we did try and plan ahead before the showers struck Another factor was the constant change in temperature and that was with very little wind to add to the confusion
DSCF1319 by martin_beswick, shot to the NW from the summit plateau of Beinn Mheadhoin
DSCF1320 by martin_beswick, one of the half dozen or so barns on the summit plateau
DSCF1324 by martin_beswick, the biggest barn
We met 4 guys who were heading up as we were rapidly descending down the snow, hope you guys enjoyed the day
DSCF1325 by martin_beswick, back down at the ford that crosses over the run off from Loch Etchachan
DSCF1329 by martin_beswick, the way ahead to Derry Cairngorm, met up with a couple of guys doing the same route in reverse
DSCF1335 by martin_beswick, Macdui in the background
DSCF1340 by martin_beswick, one of our local feathered friends
The route up to Derry Cairngorm was tough to start with mainly because we started heading up Creagan a' Choire Etchachan, once we realised we were slightly off the beaten track we traversed to the right and things were fairly easy after that. As you will appreciate we had no path or foot prints to follow, so it was navigating using the mark one eyeball and Maverick
DSCF1344 by martin_beswick, Karen smiling on the 2nd summit
DSCF1349 by martin_beswick,
DSCF1351 by martin_beswick,
DSCF1357 by martin_beswick, Nice shaped rocks snuggling up together
The descent off Derry Cairngorm was easy at first as we had footsteps to follow and aid our descent route Once we reached the bottom of the snow line the path was very obvious and it was just a matter of heading down, down and down. The views of Glen Derry and Glen Lui were spectacular
DSCF1358 by martin_beswick, Glen Lui
DSCF1360 by martin_beswick, Glen Lui zoomed
DSCF1361 by martin_beswick, Glen Derry
DSCF1362 by martin_beswick, Glen Derry zoomed
DSCF1367 by martin_beswick, Group of teenagers setting up camp next to the Derry Burn
DSCF1372 by martin_beswick, Karen posing on the "new" bridge
Once over the Derry Burn it was just a matter of knocking off the miles back to the car park, the constant light drizzle didn't make the walk back very pleasant
Big THANKS to Karen for your great company again and of course for the dinner - eventually I won't mention where we ate, but we won't be rushing back Having to wait 30 minutes before you can order your food and then another 40 minutes before it arrives doesn't quite meet the 'fast food' criteria
by litljortindan » Sun May 03, 2015 6:06 pm
by AnnieMacD » Sun May 03, 2015 8:38 pm
by teaandpies » Sun May 03, 2015 9:37 pm
It's always an interesting sub plot to the day.
by Collaciotach » Sun May 03, 2015 10:52 pm
by kmai1961 » Mon May 04, 2015 7:54 am
Nice report, Martin, and thanks for driving. This was my first deep foray into the Cairngorms from the east, and it gave me a new/renewed appreciation for all their grandeur.
Another glorious day!
by Beaner001 » Mon May 04, 2015 12:06 pm
by Graeme D » Mon May 04, 2015 5:50 pm
by Fife Flyer » Mon May 04, 2015 6:55 pm
kmai1961 wrote:ahem -- 49,587 -- truth in journalism, and all that.
Nice report, Martin, and thanks for driving. This was my first deep foray into the Cairngorms from the east, and it gave me a new/renewed appreciation for all their grandeur. Another glorious day!
Title now amended, wasn't a bad guess
Thanks to the rest of you for the kind words The Cairngorms will be calling me back very soon