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Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and sunset

Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and sunset


Postby Petr Dakota » Mon Dec 14, 2015 7:16 pm

Route description: Beinn a'Chaorainn and Beinn Bhreac

Munros included on this walk: Beinn a'Chaorainn (Cairngorms), Derry Cairngorm

Date walked: 12/12/2015

Time taken: 9.14 hours

Distance: 34.3 km

Ascent: 1484m

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Finally weekend off - free two days without a work :D I was looking forward to go to the mountains again, hoping in some snowy adventure after too many rainy - windy - fogy days. The weather forecast showed rain again in some places in Scotland, :? :roll: but Cairngorms and the East looked promisingly :) :D
Cairngorms won, still some more Munros to do there so good to keep the Eastern three for next :wink:
Cairngorms was one option in my plan even before, when watching the forecast process during the last two weeks. Because of weekend, I wanted use maximum of the time despite, but depends, of the shorter daylight...the other options was:
Five Sisters,
The Saddle & Sgurr na Sgine,
1-2 Munros in Torridon,
Grey Corries
or Conival & Ben More Assynt.

Also decision made for the Cairngorms as there was rain expectation during the day in the rest of them.
I wanted do at least two Munros on the saturday, not sure if I will be able to do any more trip up to end of this year, because of my busy working schedule before Christmas and New Year so I wished to finish this year with the number of 141 - half way, the milestone in this trip... :D :wink:

Because of winter time - shorter daylight and also the shorter distance to the closer area, no very early ( night ) start time necessary, but anyway I wanted start the walk around 7:00 - 7:30 am and walk in the darkness just on the beginning, on the easy wide initial road via Glen Lui. Prepared all my stuff late evening before the trip, busy with more other things and tired after all the previous working week when I woke up between 00:15 am - 01:45 am every morning I felt that I will need sleep at least 4 hours to regenerate my body before the trip. Alarm set for 04:00 am - which is very gentle time for me comparing to my usual mountains trips with alarm between 00:05 - 02:00 am :lol: :lol: :lol:
I arrived in the Linn of Dee car park around 8:20 in the daylight...
20151212_083415.jpg
Linn of Dee car park ( £ 2 parking fee per car a day ), not busy on saturday morning...I started my walk at 8:34, one hour later than I originally wanted so I guessed that this trip I will enjoy the darkness on the end of my walk instead
:roll: :lol:
20151212_092851.jpg
Glen Derry, after the long walk via Glen Lui...
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...and 25 mins. later, the snowy narrow path and the heather covered by snow everywhere. Derry Cairngorm ahead
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Some nice scenery on the way...
8)
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I really enjoyed the silence of the fresh morning's walk in Glen Derry
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Closer to the mountains...clear sky, good visibility and.......no wind ! Beinn Mheadhoin in the distance on the left and Beinn a'Chaorainn on the right
:D
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The walk continues through the small forest...long, but nice walk in the Glen
20151212_105702.jpg
Coire Etchachan and Beinn Mheadhoin on the right. I decided to leave the path and continue straight to Beinn a'Chaorainn through the heather and deeper snow
20151212_111159.jpg
Ascending and looking towards West...shortcut, but no faster probably in the snow and heather...
:lol:
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...and towards South, looking back to Glen Derry
8)
20151212_111446.jpg
Coire Etchachan and Beinn Mheadhoin from the higher level
20151212_111911.jpg
First ascent done and first Munro ahead, Beinn a'Chaorainn over the plateau
:D
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Beinn Mheadhoin
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Coire Ethchachan and part of Derry Cairngorm ascending on the left
20151212_114951.jpg
20151212_120042.jpg
Beinn Bhreac
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Beinn a'Bhuird on the left and Beinn Bhreac on the right
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The summit of Beinn a'Chaorainn, Beinn Mheadhoin in the background...
20151212_120231.jpg
...and with Derry Cairngorm in the background
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Descending...towards Derry Cairngorm
20151212_123054.jpg
Beinn Mheadhoin closer from the edge...
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...and Coire Etchachan, my next way up somewhere there
20151212_124549.jpg
Joined the snowy path back to Glen Derry...
20151212_125103.jpg
...but leaving the path shortly after to make another shortcut through the snow and snowy heather heading straight to Coire Etchachan
:lol: :wink: :lol: :lol:

The report continues by the post below...
Last edited by Petr Dakota on Mon Nov 07, 2016 9:38 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Petr Dakota
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby Petr Dakota » Mon Dec 14, 2015 7:17 pm

20151212_130023.jpg
20151212_131235.jpg
The testing shortcut into Coire Etchachan
:lol: :lol:
20151212_131459.jpg
Nice bothy in the nice place
8)
20151212_131628.jpg
Hutchison Memorial Hut closer...on my way up
20151212_132410.jpg
Forked Gully
20151212_132529.jpg
Looking back down, the bothy distanced now
20151212_134633.jpg
...and again from the higher level
20151212_135055.jpg
Reached the top and turned left towards Derry Cairngorm ( zig zag steepy path if turning right to Beinn Mheadhoin )...Loch Etchachan under ice
20151212_135813.jpg
...and from the higher level
20151212_135822.jpg
once again
20151212_135852.jpg
Looking back towards Beinn Mheadhoin
20151212_142314.jpg
Derry Cairngorm ahead in the mist
20151212_142439.jpg
First sign of oncoming sunset
20151212_142449.jpg
20151212_142703.jpg
20151212_142707.jpg
20151212_142814.jpg
20151212_142829.jpg
20151212_143402.jpg
20151212_143409.jpg
Looking back to Beinn Mheadhoin and Beinn a'Chaorainn
20151212_144107.jpg
...again...
20151212_144113.jpg
...and again
20151212_144300.jpg
Towards West
20151212_144314.jpg
...and again...Carn a'Mhaim, The Devil's Point...and more...
20151212_144713.jpg
The light of the sunset made it special...

The report still continues in the post below ( final part )... :wink:
Last edited by Petr Dakota on Mon Dec 14, 2015 8:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Petr Dakota
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby Petr Dakota » Mon Dec 14, 2015 7:18 pm

20151212_144812.jpg
Near the summit of Derry Cairngorm, icy...stony...slippery
20151212_144856.jpg
Towards Noth-East
20151212_145050.jpg
Summit ahead !
:D
20151212_145110.jpg
Beinn Mheadhoin again...
20151212_145114.jpg
...and again with Beinn a'Chaorainn on the right
20151212_145318.jpg
Towards West: Carn a'Mhaim, The Devils Point, Cairn Toul, Ben Macdui...
20151212_145326.jpg
20151212_145335.jpg
...and the sunset over the mountains
:D 8) :D
20151212_145650.jpg
Derry Cairngorm summit
20151212_145721.jpg
Towards North-East
20151212_145737.jpg
Towards South-South-East...my way to the car park - still far away from this point !
:roll: :lol:
20151212_145741.jpg
South-South-West
20151212_145922.jpg
Towards South
20151212_145951.jpg
Some more sunset shots...
8) 8) :D
20151212_150011.jpg
20151212_150212.jpg
20151212_150217.jpg
Time to go, darkness just behind corner and still long way ahead...atleast the descent better to manage in the daylight yet, especially on this icy, slippery, stony surface...and then steepy descend in the snow...Glen Lui in the backround - far away !
20151212_175010.jpg
Back in the car park at 17:48...really darkness around. It was hard to find the best point for the final descending, then much safer and easier walk in the bottom, throught the forest, via Derry Lodge and then the endless walk in Glen Lui. Making noisy steps in the silent evening without a wind as the road was covered by crispy ice and snow. I felt special connection to the nature around. Despite the darkness I did not use my torch until the last almost one km through the forest to the car park ( kept my senses working harder in the darkness for the better real feelings ). Happy and fresh feelings after the walk in the special area...every sense more sensitive in the darkness and the silence of the nature. It was really a great winter day in the mountains...one of the rare days without a wind...enjoyed clear visibility ( in the daylight yet ) and the fact that all the boggy areas was partly frozen and covered by snow...and snow is clean...much better than the mud !
:D :wink: 8) :lol: :D
z.jpg
( this photo is not from this trip, but from Ben Nevis one year ago - December 2014 ) I guess that it was probably my last trip in this year as I will be very busy at work around Christmas and the New Year...but never say never !
By the way I wish to all of you have a wonderful Christmas time with your families, Happy New Year...all the Best and always safe returns from the mountains... I'm glad and very happy to be a part of this great WH community....Cheers...and PF 2016
:D :wave:
Last edited by Petr Dakota on Wed Dec 16, 2015 7:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Petr Dakota
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby Gordie12 » Mon Dec 14, 2015 9:53 pm

Enjoyed reading that Petr but could you not have taken a few more photos :lol: :lol: :lol:

It looks a bit different from when I was up that way a few short weeks ago.

Congrats on reaching 50%!!
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby Silverhill » Mon Dec 14, 2015 10:24 pm

It must be great to every now and then have lie in till 4am. :wink:
Congratulations on reaching the halfway mark and well done for tackling such a big walk in short daylight. :clap: The Cairngorms look great with a dusting of snow. 8)
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby Beaner001 » Mon Dec 14, 2015 11:03 pm

Well done on the 141 Petr :clap: :clap: all the best for 2016, you never know we might bump into each other on the hills next year :lol:
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby ancancha » Mon Dec 14, 2015 11:05 pm

Great atmospheric sunset Petr and well done on reaching halfway :clap:
Likewise awe the best to everyone on WH for Christmas and New Year :D
May your lums aye reek :wink:
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby jamesb63 » Mon Dec 14, 2015 11:27 pm

Well Done on reaching the Halfway mark :clap: :clap:
at the rate you go maybe finish next year :wink:
I love your pics in the snowy landscape
All the best for the New Year :D
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby Tomsie » Tue Dec 15, 2015 12:24 am

Well done on reaching the half way mark :clap:
Some nice sunset photos 8)
Merry Xmas, hope you get out again before the end of year. :)
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby martin.h » Tue Dec 15, 2015 11:54 am

Nice one Petr, some really atmospheric shots there.
Congratulations on your half way and thanks for sharing your adventures whilst getting there, we hope to get to our half way point next year, fingers crossed.
All the best to you and family for Christmas and New year.
Cheers.
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby Petr Dakota » Tue Dec 15, 2015 9:55 pm

Gordie12 wrote:Enjoyed reading that Petr but could you not have taken a few more photos :lol: :lol: :lol:

It looks a bit different from when I was up that way a few short weeks ago.

Congrats on reaching 50%!!

Hi Gordie, still have some more spare photos available :lol: :lol: :lol:
Thanks, glad you enjoyed :D
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Petr Dakota
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby ancancha » Tue Dec 15, 2015 10:29 pm

Here's another photo of a very different day, looking down the Glen from where the burn runs out of little Loch Etchachan, although it was definitely very froozen that day :roll:

ImageLoch Etchachan South

Okay a few photos joined together :lol:
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby weaselmaster » Tue Dec 15, 2015 10:55 pm

That's a huge walk at this time of year :clap: .
Congrats on getting to the halfway mark - and best wishes to you for '16 too
Al
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby Petr Dakota » Wed Dec 16, 2015 8:38 pm

Silverhill wrote:It must be great to every now and then have lie in till 4am. :wink:
Congratulations on reaching the halfway mark and well done for tackling such a big walk in short daylight. :clap: The Cairngorms look great with a dusting of snow. 8)

Thank you :D Yes, the Winter time is forcing me to sleep longer than usual :lol: :lol: :lol: I love mountains in snow 8) No much snow there on tops yet, but icy - slippery stones mostly, more snow on the slopes...especially if making some pathless short-cuts through... :lol: :lol:

Beaner001 wrote:Well done on the 141 Petr :clap: :clap: all the best for 2016, you never know we might bump into each other on the hills next year :lol:

Thank you Matt :D , all the best to you and your family too. Higher chance that we will meet next year 8) it almost happened a few months ago near this place closer to Avon as we saw each other, but we were not sure who is it there in the distance :lol:

ancancha wrote:Great atmospheric sunset Petr and well done on reaching halfway :clap:
Likewise awe the best to everyone on WH for Christmas and New Year :D
May your lums aye reek :wink:

Thank you Craig :D all the best mate and hope you will come to do some munros sometime when acclimated there, despite the distance now :wink:

jamesb63 wrote:Well Done on reaching the Halfway mark :clap: :clap:
at the rate you go maybe finish next year :wink:
I love your pics in the snowy landscape
All the best for the New Year :D

Thank you James :D all the best to you too, hope everything will be ok and you will walk the mountains soon again

Tomsie wrote:Well done on reaching the half way mark :clap:
Some nice sunset photos 8)
Merry Xmas, hope you get out again before the end of year. :)

Thank you Tomsie :D Merry Christmas to you too. A lot of munros done last winter so hope this winter will be similar as I love it in snow, but probably after New Year.... :wink:

martin.h wrote:Nice one Petr, some really atmospheric shots there.
Congratulations on your half way and thanks for sharing your adventures whilst getting there, we hope to get to our half way point next year, fingers crossed.
All the best to you and family for Christmas and New year.
Cheers.

Thank you Martin :D You are close to the half way, I believe you will go over it next year :wink: I'm looking forward to read yours next mountains adventures 8) All the best to both of you and all your family...stay safe

weaselmaster wrote:That's a huge walk at this time of year :clap: .
Congrats on getting to the halfway mark - and best wishes to you for '16 too
Al

Thank you Al :D Best wishes to both of you and your family . Looking forward to see your next adventures 8)
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Re: Cairngorms Milestone: the beauty,snow,ice,heather and su

Postby Caberfeidh » Thu Dec 17, 2015 10:06 am

Great photos and excellent description; I miss the Cairngorms, which were my old stamping ground. I love the high, wide open spaces of the plateau in winter.
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