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Braeriach traverse

Braeriach traverse


Postby Broggy1 » Mon Jul 31, 2017 12:53 pm

Route description: Cairn Toul - Braeriach traverse

Munros included on this walk: Braeriach, Cairn Toul, Sgor an Lochain Uaine, The Devil's Point

Date walked: 28/07/2017

Time taken: 9.3 hours

Distance: 36.9 km

Ascent: 2459m

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We'd long planned to head up to Scotland for the last weekend in July but the weather forecast did not look at all promising in the lead up with the best of any weather suggesting East of the A9. No problem. Love the Cairngorms.

After arriving in Aviemore late on Thursday night/Friday morning, we pitched and got a few hours before an early start with the idea being to tackle the Cairn Toul - Braeriach traverse on Friday.

While the weather was clearly better where we were we had to be realistic and realise that we were climbing some of the biggest hills in the Country and clag along the plateau was very likely.

As it turned out we only really got clag along the plateau from Braeriach to Cairn Toul - meaning careful navigation was required which was made easier by keeping right to the edge of the cliffs on our left. Winds got lighter throughout the day and the clag lifted entirely after Cairn Toul to leave a good day on the whole with only passing showers afterwards.

The route itself is a demanding one with some rough boulder crossings. My mate slipped on the approach to the Chalamain Gap the second time round and cut his chin (I'll not post the pictures on here). Luckliy we were close to the car and he was able to quickly get to Aviemore for three stitches. But a reminder of the perils of this route, particularly during that second crossing so late in the day.

Despite this setback it was a day to remember.

Camera went funny early and phones also kept playing so pictures are a mixed bag to say the least.

1 Good approach path from Sugar Bowl.JPG
Good approach path from the Sugar Bowl car park


2 Chalamain Gap ahead.JPG
Chalamain Gap ahead. Very scenic and the boulders are big enough to scramble but great care is needed as we found out later


3 Chalamain Gap back to Meal a Buachile.JPG
Looking back to Meall a' Bhuachaille


4 Looks grimmer up on the Braeriach ridge.JPG
The weather was ok till now but higher up it was clearly grimmer as we climbed up to the ridge


5 Clarifying the route before heading into the clag.JPG
Clarifying the route before heading into the clag


6 Braeriach summit.JPG
Braeriach summit - the weather had been windy and wet on the ridge but the winds really dropped here and the rain stopped


7 Sgor an Lochain Uaine summit.JPG
Sgor an Lochain Uaine summit - we stuck closely to the cliff edge from Braeriach to ease navigation


8 Cairn Toul summit.JPG
Cairn Toul summit


8a Ahead it's cleared.JPG
Everything started to clear as we descended Cairn Toul and we could see our next objectives


9 Descending CT Boulderfield.JPG
Descending the boulders on Cairn Toul


10 Back to Sgor an Lochain Uaine.JPG
Looking back at Sgor an Lochain Uaine - very close together these two


11 Wild Valley.JPG
Some wild areas about in the Cairngorms


11a Macdui from Devils POint.JPG
Ben Macdui from the Devils Point


12  Lairig Ghru.JPG
Looking up the Lairig Ghru - we've got a long way to go


12 a Back to Cairn Toul.JPG
Dan and Will in front of shapely Cairn Toul


12 b DP.jpg
Devils Point from below


13 Devils Point frpom below.JPG
Devils Point


14 Nearly at Corrour.JPG
Nearly at Corrour Bothy


15 In Corrour.JPG
Checking out Corrour


16 Lairig Ghru.JPG
Walking the Lairig Ghru. Plenty of re-ascent needed, some boulder fields to cross and a demanding rocky path make this anything but a simple walk out from Corrour - and we still had the gap to cross again yet.
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Broggy1
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 650
Munros:78   Corbetts:13
Grahams:2   Donalds:9
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:261
Wainwrights:214   
Joined: Jul 22, 2013

Re: Braeriach traverse

Postby Alteknacker » Wed Aug 02, 2017 11:33 pm

Nice route, and it looks like you got quite lucky with the weather (at least by comparison with what the Met Office were predicting). I also had clag between Braeriach and Cairn Toul, and used the same strategy as you to keep on track. But I have to confess to being disappointed that I missed the view, for once the clag cleared I could get an idea of what I'd missed. And for me so far, the Cairngorms is all about looking down or up at amazing cliffs and corries.

I have to say, you did this in such a quick time, I'm surprised you any time for pics :lol: - Naismith + 25% - that's what I call motoring! :shock: You MUST have been jogging on the downhills, and doing the uphills like an express train...???.

Or maybe I'm just old :(
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Alteknacker
Scrambler
 
Posts: 2309
Munros:162   Corbetts:28
Hewitts:186
Wainwrights:71   
Joined: May 25, 2013
Location: Effete South (of WIgan, anyway)

Re: Braeriach traverse

Postby Broggy1 » Sun Aug 06, 2017 3:10 pm

Alteknacker wrote:Nice route, and it looks like you got quite lucky with the weather (at least by comparison with what the Met Office were predicting). I also had clag between Braeriach and Cairn Toul, and used the same strategy as you to keep on track. But I have to confess to being disappointed that I missed the view, for once the clag cleared I could get an idea of what I'd missed. And for me so far, the Cairngorms is all about looking down or up at amazing cliffs and corries.

I have to say, you did this in such a quick time, I'm surprised you any time for pics :lol: - Naismith + 25% - that's what I call motoring! :shock: You MUST have been jogging on the downhills, and doing the uphills like an express train...???.

Or maybe I'm just old :(


Thanks! The Cairngorms really are epic mountains - as your mega walks in them last year attested to. :shock:

Yeah we were pretty happy all in all as the forecast had looked grim and we mostly got a good few days. Would have preferred clarity between Braeriach and Cairn Toul but we did get to see it all in it's glory from Cairn Toul and the valley afterwards.

I guess we did motor a bit in parts on this one. The injury to my mate sped us up as we knew we had to get back ASAP once that happened.
User avatar
Broggy1
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 650
Munros:78   Corbetts:13
Grahams:2   Donalds:9
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:261
Wainwrights:214   
Joined: Jul 22, 2013

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