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Tramping round the Tarf - high camp included!

Tramping round the Tarf - high camp included!


Postby jenniferc6 » Sun May 13, 2018 11:37 am

Munros included on this walk: An Sgarsoch, Beinn Dearg (Blair Atholl), Carn a'Chlamain, Carn an Fhidhleir (Carn Ealar)

Corbetts included on this walk: Beinn Bhreac, Beinn Mheadhonach

Date walked: 06/05/2018

Time taken: 16 hours

Distance: 55 km

Ascent: 2482m

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After a summit camp on Sgurr an Airgid last September and with the long days now returning, I was keen to do a bit more camping on the hills this year. Despite having done all the Munros, I haven’t done much ‘proper’ backpacking in the hills, usually camping at a site or by the car when I do bring my tent out so I decided to put this right on one of the classic backpacking routes, the ring of Tarf.
With the May day holiday and Monday off, I set off on the Sunday hoping to get fairly far round the route so that I had a shorter walk on Monday before driving home. I set off with my full rucksack at 7.15am to do Beinn Mheadhonach first. It was a very calm morning and pretty warm so I set a slower than usual steady pace to avoid overheating. It was a really nice walk up to this Corbett through a secretive feeling glen and it wasn’t too steep going up the hill.
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There was a little light mist on the tops to start but it soon burned off and it was sunny for the rest of the day. Most of the day from this point on was on pathless heather which was actually pretty good for walking since it wasn’t too boggy but navigation on this route could be tricky in the mist I would imagine. The clear views certainly made things much easier for me today.
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rucksack loaded up on Beinn Mheadhonach

I reached Beinn Dearg which was my 200th solo Munro so a wee milestone for me. I met a couple of ladies at the top but soon headed on my way to the next Corbett, Beinn Bhreac. I found a nice clear stream on the way down so took the chance to fill up my bottles.
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As I got to the top of Beinn Bhreac I met Colin and Jura – what are the chances of bumping into someone you know on one of the most remote Corbetts! I had a quick break at the top trying to shelter from the wind which had picked up a bit and then headed off for Carn an’Fhidhlier.
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I saw a group heading in the other direction a bit lower down the hill so gave them a wave. The final Munro of the day was An Sgarsoch and it seemed to be further away than I remembered from the last time I was up it. Eventually the summit cairn came into view and I was able to shelter in the windbreak with stunning views of the Cairngorms in the late afternoon sunshine.
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I decided to wear shorts with my gaiters which was good for keeping me cooler and also kept the heather and mud out of my boots and meant I could zip on my clean trousers for camping at night. The only downside was that I managed to sunburn one of my legs – I think the top of the gaiter must have rubbed off the suncream :(
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the top at last!

I took my boots off for crossing the Tarf and was glad I did since it was pretty deep - I wouldn’t fancy it in spate. I filled up my bottles for the evening and after spotting a dead deer just downstream I made sure I boiled everything first! It was around 6pm at this point so I had to choose whether to head West and camp by the Tarf hotel or climb a bit higher before the end of the day. In the end, I thought Braigh Coire na Conlaich looked like it would make a good camp spot so headed up the hillside for my final climb of the day. I would like to go back and visit the bothy some time, it must be one of the most remote.
I found a good flat spot for my tent at about 7pm and managed to pitch up despite the breeze. A fine supper of mug shots and a hot chocolate while enjoying the sunset was a great way to end the day.
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It was a bit breezy overnight so I didn’t get the best sleep but by morning it was very calm and still. An early start and I was on Carn a’ Chlamain just after 6am I think.
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As I was walking out, I was starting to feel my shoulders a bit from carrying the rucksack so had a few stops to stretch on the way. I met a few folks walking or cycling up the glen as I got closer to the car park. There was a rain shower when I was not far from the car park and I was glad I started early since it rained most of the way when I was driving home.
This was a brilliant walk in a remote feeling area and it is really satisfying to head out with your tent and spend a bit more time in the mountains. Another good point is that you don’t have a long drive to and from the hills in the same day (usually 3 hours or longer for me to get to the hills). I’m looking forward to doing some similar routes and making the most of my tent to spend a bit longer out there enjoying the hills :D
User avatar
jenniferc6
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 496
Munros:209   Corbetts:120
Grahams:25   Donalds:9
Sub 2000:35   Hewitts:2
Wainwrights:3   
Joined: Aug 29, 2010
Location: Lonmay, Aberdeenshire

Re: Tramping round the Tarf - high camp included!

Postby petelynn » Sun May 13, 2018 9:30 pm

Hi (Jenni?)

I was one of the group you saw between Beinn Bhreac and Carn Ealar. I'm in the middle of writing my report - we spent a couple of nights at the Tarf Hotel. I remember seeing this strange sight of a woman in shorts and gaiters! Nice to have seen you at a distance and now electronically. An impressive round with camping kit!
petelynn
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 36
Munros:8   Corbetts:7
Grahams:4   
Sub 2000:10   Hewitts:32
Wainwrights:11   
Joined: Jun 23, 2012
Location: Wells-next-the-Sea

Re: Tramping round the Tarf - high camp included!

Postby jenniferc6 » Tue May 15, 2018 7:51 am

Thanks Pete, good to see you on the hill. It was great to spend a bit more time out camping in the hills especially with the good weather :) You should try the shorts/ gaiters combo some time, just make sure the suncream doesn't wear off!
User avatar
jenniferc6
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 496
Munros:209   Corbetts:120
Grahams:25   Donalds:9
Sub 2000:35   Hewitts:2
Wainwrights:3   
Joined: Aug 29, 2010
Location: Lonmay, Aberdeenshire

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