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Video/Photo montage of Awesome 4 Day Cairngorm Hike
by Michael Cook » Tue Sep 14, 2010 4:31 pm
Munros included on this walk: Beinn Bhrotain, Ben Macdui, Braeriach, Cairn Toul, Derry Cairngorm, Monadh Mor, Sgor an Lochain Uaine, The Devil's Point
Date walked: 18/08/2010
Time taken: 25 hours
Distance: 75 km
Ascent: 4000mRegister or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
For a more traditional review see below but the video is better
I have played around the edge of the Cairngorms. A winter skills course at Coire an Lochain, a few munro's on the fringes but I had never been to their heart. With 4 free walking and camping days in August I set about trying to put that right. We aimed to camp high to avoid midges and enjoy any views on offer.
Day 1, 18 Aug - The Walk in and The Devil's Point
We set off from the Linn of Dee carpark about noon and enjoyed the walk in. With heavy packs we were very grateful for the excellently maintained path which took us all the way to the foot of Devil's Point and my first close up view of the Lairig Ghru.
Next was the hall up onto the Bealach at the top of Coire Odhar. I had expected this to be harder than it was but being so steep at least we made quick progress. It was beautiful conditions and we were pleased to leave the midges of the Bothy behind. As we set up camp at about 910m we were treated to this rainbow.
After cooking dinner it was still fine so a gentle amble brought us to the top of The Devil's Point, we took a wee dram of Whisky on the top. Absolutely stunning views in the very heart of the Gorms.
Day 2, 19 Aug - Cairn Toul, Angel's Peak and a couple of extras
It was a strange sensation the next morning being in a tiny two man tent and opening the flaps to see the most stunning open views. It felt like we were in the smallest one room house with the biggest garden ever!
First climb of the day took us up to the subsidiary top south of Cairn Toul. Rough bolder fields with craggy cliffs down into the Corrie.
We skipped along the flanks of Cairn Toul to drop our heavy sacks before summiting Cairn Toul. Again still lovely and clear views
We had originally planned to carry on around to Braeriach but instead decided to down to Loch nan Stuirteag where we set up camp (about 2pm) dropped off our stuff and then with a light pack bagged Monadh Mor and Beinn Bhrotain. Fairly featureless compared to those flanking the great Laraig! But made a nice full day.
Day 3, 20 Aug - Woke up in cloud with even the nearby Lochan beyond the limit of visibility. By the time the tent was packed it was raining hard and it lasted for several hours. Careful navigation using the stream as a handrail we got to the Bealach between Angel's Peak and Braeriach. In poor visibility we stumbled across some Reindeer including a white one. We watched them for about 10 minutes and they were very tollerant of us.
By the summit of Braeriach it was heavy driving rain about 40mph and we stayed no longer than necessary. We had planned a steep descent into Lairig but the wind, rain and poor visibility pursuaded us to take the main route NNW to the northern end of the Lairig Ghru. Descending to about 700m we were treated to some sun and another beautiful rainbow.
This marked a massive change in the weather. The sun came out but the wind picked up. We had planned to camp high on Ben MacDui but taking a quick look at MWIS forecast told us 90mph winds were expected from South West. We decided to detour through Chalamain Gap and find somewhere to camp with the Mighty Ben between us and the South West winds.
We considered camping in the Northern Corries but managed to find a sheltered spot about 700m. The view of the Corries was grand
That night was something else. Clear skies with stunning view of Milky Way. But accompanied by the most viscious winds I have ever experienced. Despite having put rocks on top of every peg we still had to get up every hour and re-peg. Finding pegs by headtorch was not easy. At times I was amazed the poles didn't snap. We didn't get much sleep that night!
Day 4, 21 Aug - A very long day.
The next morning we climbed Ben MacDui in gale force winds. That said it was dry with good visibility so it wasn't too bad. Also our packs were much lighter now having eaten most of the food.
It felt good to reach Ben MacDui, we could easily believe we were at the highest point in the Cairngorms. Despite starting the day at about 680m it had been a very long hall our legs were starting to protest
We had originally planned to add Carn a' Mhaim but the 400m re-assent was now out of the question - besides I quite like the idea of having to come here again! So instead we went directly to Derry Cairngorm with stunning views of Loch Etchachan. We thought about camping here (it looked a great spot) but the winds were still too strong.
Instead we thought we would camp near the Hutchinson Memorial Hut. The highland midges had other ideas so instead we decided to walk out that night. It was a long walk out but we were accompanied by some beautiful evening light dancing off the Scot's Pines.
Overall a great 4 days and 3 nights in the Cairngorms. Great weather, awesome remoteness and beautiful views.
by bootsandpaddles » Tue Sep 14, 2010 4:44 pm
by skuk007 » Tue Sep 14, 2010 6:29 pm
by Michael Cook » Tue Sep 14, 2010 7:05 pm
by Michael Cook » Tue Sep 14, 2010 10:27 pm
skuk007 wrote:Well done, epic few days, and great photos too. Would like to see the video but I can't see a link to it yet.
It is there now
by Merry-walker » Tue Sep 14, 2010 10:51 pm
by Stretch » Tue Sep 14, 2010 11:04 pm
by skuk007 » Wed Sep 15, 2010 7:45 pm
by gammy leg walker » Wed Sep 15, 2010 8:56 pm
by LeithySuburbs » Wed Sep 15, 2010 9:59 pm
by Merry-walker » Wed Sep 15, 2010 10:15 pm
by Michael Cook » Thu Sep 16, 2010 12:43 am
by mountainstar » Thu Sep 16, 2010 9:20 am