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In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies


Postby Alteknacker » Sat Sep 10, 2016 10:43 pm

Munros included on this walk: Ben Macdui, Braeriach, Cairn Toul, Carn a'Mhaim, Sgor an Lochain Uaine, The Devil's Point

Date walked: 07/09/2016

Time taken: 14.5 hours

Distance: 44.5 km

Ascent: 2822m

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Last night I dreamt of mountains. The last time that happened was after I walked the Cuillin Ridge for the first time (and then it was every night for nearly 2 weeks).

This is why I dreamt of mountains (I think!).

Twice already I had booked leave on the basis of the long-term weather forecast with the idea of walking the Mamores; and twice already the forecast had changed shortly before the scheduled date. :evil:

Now it looked like there might be a weather window again; but the weather folks were being very non-committal - lots of talk about very confused weather patterns, and how difficult it was to forecast.
Weather Forecast.PNG


However, on Monday the weather sibyl (my Chief Executive) said very definitively that Wednesday looked like being a good day in the Highlands, and I should go.

And I didn't have to do too much: the car was still packed from the previous postponement. So that was that. Or so it seemed. Just out of more or less idle curiosity, and fully expecting the forecasts earlier in the week to be confirmed, I browsed through the various weather sites on Tuesday morning. And to my horror, it seemed like the prognosis for Wednesday was deteriorating... except that MWIS said East of the A9 should be reasonable, albeit with some cloud in the earlier part of the morning.

I've read through various reports on the Cairngorms over the years, and I generally wasn't really fired up by the pics: so much of it looked like an agglomeration of BFSLs (Big Flat Stony Lumps). But there were some that featured huge cliffs, dramatic corries and hanging lochans - most recently ones from Cairngorm Creeper and Mountain Love - that really got me thinking that I might have made a significant error of judgement.

In those few hours on Tuesday morning, a lot of disparate thoughts came together, which resulted in my rushing off to Go Outdoors to get a map of the Cairngorms, and resolving to give it a go.

I'd hoped to get off reasonably early on Tuesday afternoon, but the fates (= work) conspired against me; with the ultimate result that I got to the Lynn of Dee car park just after midnight.

Fortunately, having read ML's recent report, I was mentally and physically prepared for beastie assault, and my standard armour of waterproof gear with tightly strapped wrists and ankles, plus midge net hat, plus Deet on my hands, donned in the protection of the car, served well as I pitched the tent and hauled in my gear.

Once in the tent, I quickly worked out a route with a couple of alternative variations, marked them up with a highlighter on the map, and then crashed. I just wish I didn't have to keep saying to myself in retrospect: more haste, less speed :( .


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It's quite a while since I was out in the hills, so I was quite pumped up, and slept somewhat fitfully. But I was definitely dead to the world when the alarm roused me at 4.00am. After a few moments working out where I was and shy I'd set the alarm, I got moving and was on the bike, tent etc packed away in the car, and heading out to Derry Lodge, at 5.00 am, clad in my anti-beastie armour...

teutonic_knight R.jpg


(this gives no proper impression at all of the extent of the beastie assault...)

It was still pitch black, and as I didn't know the track, the going was pretty slow. But even at my sedate pace, I reached Derry Lodge at about 5.30am. The track is really quite good, so if you're reading this and contemplating cycling in, I would say definitely: do it. I was on my late Dad's road bike, and it was absolutely fine.

The only issue was the 5 seconds I spent dismounting and stowing my armour: 5 seconds in this environment was 4.9 too many to avoid the beastie attack :? :shock:

The first few hundred metres of track after the footbridge is a bit vague at times, but if you do it in daylight, I think it would be no problem (it wasn't on the return leg). Pretty soon it becomes a very easy-to-follow path - topped with light coloured granitic sand, which I discovered during the day is pretty typical for this area.

This is what I might have seen had I started out...
a) a bit later
b) on a sunnier day!!!

Leaving Derry Lodge footbridge R.png

(not my pic)

This is what I did see...

Derry Lodge 5.30.png


But eventually dawn began to break through the lowering clag...

Image

The two routes I'd contemplated in the small hours were:-
1. along the path up Glen Luibeg and straight up Ben Macdui
2. straight up Carn Crom (the hill immediately behind Derry Lodge) and on to Derry Cairngorm
I'd marked up both on the map with a highlighter. This is a significant observation!!!

The reason for doing Derry Cairngorm would have been the views, and also adding a couple of Munros to the circuit. But flogging through clag just to add to the list of Munros visited doesn't really appeal - if the hill is worth it, I'll return when it's clear.

So I take the first option.

Dark it may be, but it's very warm and humid, with no wind; so every time I stop to shed another layer, the trillions upon trillions of beasties are waiting...
midge swarm.PNG

This certainly encourages the briskest of paces!!

It's a straightforward walk along the path up Glen Luibeg up to the point at which the path splits. I then bear left towards Ben Macdui. On a fine weather day I'm sure this would be a mistake, in the sense that - at least to judge from the map - there would be a sensational route up Derry Cairngorm, and thence to Creagan a' Coire Etchachan, with what should be spectacular views of Loch Etchachan at an elevation of over 1000m (amazing or amazing???). But in clag everything looks the same, and I'm not much enthused by views of cairns in clag...

Image''''''''''''' Rather uninspiring view back along the path I've just come. But turning back after an 8 hour drive is just not on.

A longish slog upwards gets me to ... a fold in the map. So I take out the map from the waterproof case and refold it to show the northern section. At this point I also enter the clag - compass out, therefore.

The going is slow now: get the bearing from the map, careful bearing with the compass, object sighting, walk to object, new bearing, new object sighting etc. etc.
But something is not quite right: the topography is not aligning with the map. There is a steep edge, but it is not aligned in the direction it should be.... and the terrain is all pretty "samey" - no other features to help orientate myself.
Clag approaching BM R.png

It takes me an embarassingly long time to realise what's happened: since folding the map, I've been trying to follow the Derry Cairngorm route marked on my map instead of the Ben Macdui route... I must have wasted 45 minutes trying to work out exactly what was going on!
Really dumb.PNG

Surely the dumbest navigation mess up ever!!!
Image20160907_084149. Now I know where I am, it doesn't take too long to get to the BM cairn, where I chew on a breakfast bagel and reflect on my stupidity: once again: more haste, less speed!

Hopefully, if the weather runes readers are right, this will hopefully be the first and last summit in clag. Some hope!

Image20160907_140038. This is Ben Macdui viewed from Angel's Peak later in the day when the clag had cleared, giving a fair idea of the kind of views I might have had from the top of BM!

Now I take the path that heads just West of North, running parallel to Lairig Ghru, checking bearings as I go. The idea is to drop straight down the East side of Lairig Ghru and up the other side to Sron na Lairige.
Image20160907_093125. As I descend the gentle slope towards Lochan Buidhe, a tiny gap in the cloud opens and the sun shines tantalizingly through. For about 20 seconds. I hope that this augers well for the rest of the day...

Just after passing the Lochan, I bear more or less due West toward the Lairig Ghru. Suddenly I see a really odd shaped rock formation ahead in the mist; which, as I draw nearer, I see move, and I realise that it's a tent with people outside it. It turns out to be 3 young Belgians, who are spending a week walking across the Cairngorms. They tell me that yesterday was an excellent clear day (not as forecast!), albeit very windy. They're just packing up before heading to Ben Macdui, from where they plan to follow more or less the same route as I, across the Lairig Ghru and along to the Angel's Peak, before heading South to pick up a track in Glen Feshie. We part with mutual wishes for a good day, and I continue towards Lairig Ghru.

Image20160907_100954. As is clear from the map, it's really quite a steep descent, especially the top half, requiring extensive use of hands, and made more difficult and slow by the mixed bouldery/grass terrain. I just hope that the Belgians manage OK with their heavy sacs.

Image20160907_101016. Looking South on the descent, the rather weird Pools of Dee. All the way down I hear regular bellowing from stags that I cannot see in the mist - a rather dramatic sound!

Image20160907_102132. The ascent up the East side of Lairig Ghru to Sron na Lairige is also pretty rough.

Image20160907_102909. From time to time the sun breaks through to illuminate Craig an Leth-choin to the North; and in the North the cloud seems to have dissipated. But sadly not here!

Image20160907_104409. Looking back the way I've just come, the slopes do indeed look quite intimidating.

Image20160907_104720. Again looking North to Craig an Leth-choin bathed in sunlight.

Image20160907_112135. Sron na Lairige in the clag fails to inspire.

Image20160907_115806. So on to Braeriach, following the edge of the cliffs. Route finding is very straightforward, partly because of the cliff edge, and partly because I meet the path from time to time.

Cliffs R.png

Even in the mist it is obvious that the cliffs are really dramatic... As it turns out, I get some good views of them later on. :D

Image20160907_132549. Just as I reach Angel's Point, the sun breaks through for a few moments; and I'm so excited I have to photograph the event!

I sit resting against the cairn and am consuming a cheeze-and-salami-and-Branston-Pickle sandwich looking out over the cliff edge into the mist, when the most amazing thing happens. A snow bunting pops up from below, flying just above the rocks a few metres in front of me, with a merlin in hot pursuit. The bunting twists and turns with the merlin close behind it. And then as quickly as they arrived, they're gone. For a moment I'm frozen in shock. When I recover I get out the camera in the forlorn hope that the chase might return my way. For about a minute there's nothing, and then, from exactly the same direction, and in the same scenario, the merlin reappears, this time chasing a wheatear. But it all happens too close and too fast for me to be able to get a picture. However, the merlin returns and flies around me for a while. I try to take a few pictures, but this the only one that even half works.
Image20160907_132803. Merlin in the mist, after the unsuccessful chases (middle of the picture, about a third of the way from the top).

Absolutely sensational. I'm completely pumped up - this really makes up for the disappointment of the poor weather. I'm sat there digesting the experience in the absolute silence of the mist, when a voice hails me! I nearly jump out of my skin :shock: - somehow I just wasn't expecting anyone else to be up here mid-week in these conditions. It's a couple who, they tell me, have walked from the Sugar Bowl - they show me where this is on their map as I've never heard of it - and are planning to descend by the path just below Devil's Point, and return via Lairig Ghru. We chat for a while, one of the subjects being the wearing of cross trainers for walking, for I see that they are also wearing them (as indeed are another couple I pass later on the way up to Devil's point). Then I get my sac in order, and head off to Cairn Toul. All of a sudden, without any warning, the cloud clears, and there are views!!!

Image20160907_133649. And the way ahead to Cairn Toul is visible. I decide to hang around a bit in the hope that I might get some real views. It also occurs to me that this is my hundredth Munro. I can't see myself ever compleating, but I suppose it's some kind of milestone :roll: .

Image20160907_135838. Sure enough, after about 20 minutes the clouds really are blown away in the breeze, and fantastic views reveal themselves, this looking North to Braeriach.

Image20160907_140715. What's really stunning here - and what the pics don't really communicate adequately - is the sheer scale of everything; and the impression of immense age and permanence. It's simply breathtaking. I take dozens of pics, but none really captures this sense of scale adequately.

Image20160907_135842. The amazing Lochan Uaine, pictured from the Angel's Peak.

Image20160907_140038. And Ben Macdui, with what I imagine must be either Cairn Lochan or Cairngorm in the background to the left.

Image20160907_140042. Viewed from the bealach before the ascent to Cairn Toul (just out of view on the left), looking along the ridge towards Stob Coire an t-Saighdeir.

Image20160907_140319. Really dramatic cliffs all the way along the ridge.

Image20160907_141938. Looking back North towards the Angel's Peak on the ascent to Cairn Toul.

Image20160907_142318. I just can't stop snapping all the way up Cairn Toul - this again a view of Braeriach on the right and the Angel's Peak on the left. The rather rough bouldery going is clear in the foreground.

Image20160907_143327. Ben Macdui viewed from the ascent to Cairn Toul.

Image20160907_143346. Looking North towards Ben Macdui on the ascent to Cairn Toul, with the last challenge of the day - ascent of Cairn a'Mhaim - very visible on the right. It's interesting how insignificant a 1000m+ peak looks in comparison to Ben Macdui!! Corrour Bothy is just hidden by the shoulder of the hill on the extreme right hand side.

Image20160907_143507. View of the route I've come along the ridge, with the Falls of Dee just visible in the far background. Absolutely sensational!

Image20160907_143915. And a full panorama of all the summits so far, from Ben Macdui on the extreme right, down into the Lairig Ghru and then the ridge from Braeriach to the Angel's Point to the left.

Image20160907_145247. As cloud begins to blow in again, this is looking along the ridge, Stob Coire an t-Saighdeir in the foreground, and Devil's Point in the background on the left hand side.

Image20160907_150435. Looking back towards Cairn Toul, showing the dramatic drops from the edge. This must be quite interesting in mid-winter! You get a good view here of the bouldery surface that does, quite imperceptibly, seem to slow one down.

Image20160907_150856. Stob Coire an t-Saighdeir Spectacular views in all directions!

Image20160907_151248. Looking down from Stob Coire an t-Saighdeir towards the Devil's Point.

Image20160907_152824. Looking up at Devil's Point from the bealach from which the path descends the steep cliff face to Corrour. I leave my sac here and walk the short distance up to Devil's Point. The boulder field on the way up to the summit , clear to see on this pic, is typical of a lot of this route, and what makes walking speed quite a bit slower than one would plan for.

Image20160907_153759. Looking back along the ridge from the Devil's Point. The path down to Corrour is clearly visible, and would be easy to find even in dense mist.

Image20160907_154223. Panorama looking North from Devil's Point, with Cairn Toul on the left, and Ben Macdui on the right.

Image20160907_154114. From the Devil's Point looking SSE down Glen Dee, with Beinn Bhrotain on the RHS. You get a terrific sense of the scale and emptiness from this viewpoint. Wonderful!

Image[/url]20160907_154353. Looking down into Glen Dee and ahead at the last climb of the day up to Carn a'Mhaim. It's a goodly ascent at this point in the walk, and the ground looks from here - and indeed turns out to be - very rough indeed, being mainly heather.

Image20160907_154348. Corrour Bothy looking very romantic and wild in its own little patch of fluorescent green. Can't help but wonder if this is caused by the many decades of nitrogenous fertilizer... :) ???

Image20160907_160842. The path down to Corrour makes the descent quick and easy. This view is looking back up the path from close to the bothy.

Image20160907_162646. Fabulous view looking up Glen Dee from the river crossing.

Image20160907_163130. But now the climb to Cairn a' Mhaim. It doesn't look too steep on the pic, but it is - about 40 degrees. And the going is very rough indeed (= slow) and hard graft. It takes a long time to get on to the ridge...

exhausted.png


Image20160907_171008. Looking back down towards Corrour. You can see from here why it wouldn't be such a good idea to try to down into Glen Dee by simply dropping down off the end of Devil's Point...!!! (unless your sole objective was to descend as quickly as physics allows....).

Image20160907_175209. Still life with trusty Eurohike sac: the summit of Carn a/Mhaim at last. From here it's just a couple of hundred metres to the South-East top, and thence down into the glen.

Image20160907_180630. Looking back at Carn a'Mhaim from the South-East top.

Image20160907_180827. Looking South East down towards Glen Luibeg. There is no path shown on the map, but in fact there is a good path there, that is clearly visible on the RHS of this pic.

Image20160907_182624. However, the path leads to what is marked as a ford on the map, and I don't know whether there will be sufficient stepping stones to be able to cross it. And since there is a footbridge a little further up Glen Luibeg, this is what I aim towards.

Image20160907_185415. The descent is quite easy, but this pic looking back up from just beyond the footbridge shows that in misty conditions you would need to take plenty of care in picking out your route: careful bearings and distance measurement, no fold-in-the-map stupidity, etc...).

A quick return along the path to Derry Lodge, where just the few seconds required to get my bike results in a massive assault by the beasties. How they sniff the CO2 and gather in such swarms in such a short period is very hard to fathom. So I sprint back on the bike - quite easy now I can see the track properly - arriving in the car park at about 19.30.

I have to take all my gear out of the car in order to get my bike in first and then re-stow the gear on top of it. So I have to stop to don my anti-beastie armour. Again, it's absolutely astonishing how quickly they're on to me. But I'm getting quite practiced at this, and it isn't long before everything is in the car and I'm on my way, with only a few bites on my fact (somehow some must have got trapped inside the midgie net).

And back home by 0.3.30, well impressed with the Cairngorms. My ambivalence towards these mountains was wholly unjustified - I will certainly be back!
Last edited by Alteknacker on Tue Nov 20, 2018 3:31 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby Huff_n_Puff » Sun Sep 11, 2016 2:31 pm

Brilliant report - but I do have some serious concerns about this CEO of yours. After many hours carefully testing competing theories I've come to 2 definite, contradictory conclusions:
1. that 'she' is an algorithm and that you were involved in the design (weather prediction section needs tweaking)
2. you are on a 0 hours contract with a company that tests outdoor gear and are being massively exploited.

Whichever that was a brilliant round of hills and a hugely entertaining story :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: . Glad to hear of your change of opinion on the Cairngorms. We were up there yesterday but more of that later ... perhaps, if I can find the reserve energy energy bottle ... :lol:
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby Mountainlove » Sun Sep 11, 2016 7:09 pm

:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: YOU DID IT :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: well done for finally getting to the Cairngorms and I am glad that you liked them. You have some amazing photos...I am glad the clag lifted.
Had to laugh so much about mixing the hills up on the map...did something similar once (its when you think, thank good no one was following me ) :lol:

Hey at least you have reached 100...surely you will be able to hit 141 next year??
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby simon-b » Sun Sep 11, 2016 8:41 pm

A fine round. Now you've seen the true glory of the Cairngorms.
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby Borderhugh » Mon Sep 12, 2016 7:44 am

Nice one AK!

Oooh those midgies!

I was feeling for you as I started to read your report. I was thinking 'you're going to need to do these again for the views'. But am with you on the not turning back after 8 hour drive. I have driven up from London on a number of occasions to have pants weather.

If I'm honest, I think most good folk on this site will have made the same navigational error as you. Its easy to assume you know the route in auto-pilot not concentrating fully on the map.

I am really glad it cleared over for you and I enjoyed the bit about the birds. Makes you feel alive.

The LG is a terrific place. The views from all of the peaks are great. Braeriach, Devils Point and Carn a Mhaim were the stand outs for me.
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby dav2930 » Mon Sep 12, 2016 5:06 pm

A very entertaining report AK, enjoyed that. Nice pics too. Your encounter with the merlin sounds magical. :clap:

I think the southern approaches to the Cairngorms lend themselves much more to well-structured rounds like that than the northern approaches do. And the scenery is so much nicer too. More satisfying altogether. It must have taken some will-power to slog up to Carn a' Mhaim though! :clap:

It's good that you now appreciate the grandeur of the Cairngorms. They certainly have a unique character. Well worth visiting in Winter or early Spring too when they're covered in snow - a real arctic environment.
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby Alteknacker » Mon Sep 12, 2016 11:51 pm

Huff_n_Puff wrote:Brilliant report - but I do have some serious concerns about this CEO of yours. After many hours carefully testing competing theories I've come to 2 definite, contradictory conclusions:
1. that 'she' is an algorithm and that you were involved in the design (weather prediction section needs tweaking)
2. you are on a 0 hours contract with a company that tests outdoor gear and are being massively exploited.
...


Who's the CEO in your life, then? In mine it's my good wife of 41 years.... :D
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby Huff_n_Puff » Tue Sep 13, 2016 9:13 pm

Alteknacker wrote:Who's the CEO in your life, then? In mine it's my good wife of 41 years.... :D


:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: Serves me right for assuming your nom de plume was the irony of someone who had just skipped past his 35th birthday :lol: :lol:

As for my CEO that sparked a debate, legal partnership more like :roll: :roll:
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby dogplodder » Wed Sep 14, 2016 3:13 pm

You may have been a bit disappointed with the weather but you got better views than I did (twice) when I've been on the Angel to Devil ridge so very much enjoyed seeing your photos! 8)
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby Alteknacker » Wed Sep 14, 2016 11:28 pm

Borderhugh wrote:Nice one AK!

Oooh those midgies!

..... I have driven up from London on a number of occasions to have pants weather.

......The views from all of the peaks are great. Braeriach, Devils Point and Carn a Mhaim were the stand outs for me.


Mountain Love pointed me to what looks like a great innovation, namely a midge jacket - check out the link above. I'll certainly be getting one!

I'm impressed that you drive from London - that must add another 3 hours or so on to my journey => 11-ish hours! That's serious dedication!

Re: views. Yes, there's a kind of special character to them that seems to be really difficult to capture on camera - a kind of massiveness - and even if you manage it (which I haven't) you need to view the picture on a really big screen to get any real sense of what it's like in real life.

dogplodder wrote:You may have been a bit disappointed with the weather but you got better views than I did (twice) when I've been on the Angel to Devil so very much enjoyed seeing your photos! 8)


Thanks - but see my comment above. My photos aren't very good, but even when I look at much better pics than mine, they don't see to pick up the real character of the place - at least for me!

dav2930 wrote: A very entertaining report AK, enjoyed that. Nice pics too. Your encounter with the merlin sounds magical. :clap:

I think the southern approaches to the Cairngorms lend themselves much more to well-structured rounds like that than the northern approaches do. And the scenery is so much nicer too. More satisfying altogether. It must have taken some will-power to slog up to Carn a' Mhaim though! :clap:

It's good that you now appreciate the grandeur of the Cairngorms. They certainly have a unique character. Well worth visiting in Winter or early Spring too when they're covered in snow - a real arctic environment.


Thanks dav. Yes, the merlin was one of the highlights of my birdwatching life!

The ascent of Carn a' Mhaim was indeed a slog, not helped by the inevitable impact of advancing years :( .

Your comment about winter is noted: I'll definitely give it a go. Thanks for the tip.
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby litljortindan » Tue Sep 20, 2016 10:02 pm

Highly entertaining and glad to see your perseverance rewarded. An amazing wildlife encounter and always a great feeling getting out of cloud and into clearing conditions.
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby roscoT » Thu Sep 22, 2016 3:50 pm

Just brilliant AK - what an adventure! Laugh out loud in parts.

Finally getting into the Cairngorms as well :clap: I still have all of them to look forward to :D
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby BobMcBob » Thu Sep 22, 2016 5:49 pm

Very interesting. I've been Cairngorm-skeptic ever since my one visit to Aviemore a few years ago. Boring piles of mud was the impression I came away with :) But if a fellow scrambler can be "turned" in one visit - despite hordes of beasties - then perhaps I'd better give 'em another look. There's definitely something in those photos. Don't knock it till you've tried it, I guess :)
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby Alteknacker » Thu Sep 22, 2016 8:34 pm

litljortindan wrote:Highly entertaining and glad to see your perseverance rewarded. An amazing wildlife encounter and always a great feeling getting out of cloud and into clearing conditions.


Thanks litljortindan. In fact I felt so rewarded I went back and did some more 10 days later, notwithstanding the 8 hour one way drive!!! On the wildlife side, nothing to match the merlin, but the weather was just perfect, so I'm still pretty enthused by the place.

And you're so right about how the spirits lift when the cloud lifts. I think it's a phenomenon that Colin Wilson christened "The St Neot's Effect" :D

roscoT wrote:Just brilliant AK - what an adventure! Laugh out loud in parts.

Finally getting into the Cairngorms as well :clap: I still have all of them to look forward to :D


Thanks roscoT. Given that I've felt so negative about them for such a time, and have now discovered their attractions, I'm keen to proselytize for them. Really well worth exploring: the combination of unprepossessing gently rounded approaches on one side of hills, with really dramatic cliffs, often with Lochans, on the other, is extremely impressive. And you have the added bonus of an additional option sometimes when the weather in the West isn't so good.

Enjoy!

BobMcBob wrote:Very interesting. I've been Cairngorm-skeptic ever since my one visit to Aviemore a few years ago. Boring piles of mud was the impression I came away with :) But if a fellow scrambler can be "turned" in one visit - despite hordes of beasties - then perhaps I'd better give 'em another look. There's definitely something in those photos. Don't knock it till you've tried it, I guess :)


Yep, definitely worth a try. I think I benefited from approaching from the South: the track from the Linn of Dee is very easy to cycle, and it gets you pretty quickly into fine remote country. And as I say in the report, the photos don't really seem quite to capture the impactfulness of shear mass of some of these hills.
Last edited by Alteknacker on Fri Sep 23, 2016 9:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: In the Cairngorms at last: a round of 6 with 4 biggies

Postby Jaxter » Fri Sep 23, 2016 8:20 am

:lol: :lol:

This brightened up my usually sleepy commute to edinburgh, so thank you :D

I've still to get to the Cairngorms for real and had similar feelings towards them as you did. Maybe there is hope for me after all :wink:

Mistakes are fine so long as we learn from them and are able to laugh about it afterwards. Certainly makes for entertaining reading :lol: :thumbup:
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