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Cairngorm - my maiden Munro :)

Cairngorm - my maiden Munro :)

Postby Fingal2018 » Mon May 21, 2018 9:06 pm

Route description: Cairn Gorm and the northern corries

Munros included on this walk: Cairn Gorm

Date walked: 29/04/2018

Time taken: 5 hours

Distance: 13 km

Ascent: 880m

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I had been looking forward to this for a long time: back in Scotland, and off onto the Cairngorm plateau for the very first time. The plan was to see how far I would get towards Ben Macdui before the snow would stop me - hiking in snow is something still on my list to learn :wink: Backup options were out the same way or the attractive route atop Caingorm's northern corries.

Starting out in sunshine from the funicular parking lot, I made my way past Coire an t-Sneachda and Coire an Lochain, and conveniently as the hill became steeper there was an increasing level of wind to keep cool :) Taking a leisurely stroll up while the sun was taking some breaks, I was soon rewarded with a nice clear view back down.

Spring down there

Having reached the first flatter bit, the reward was a marvellous view across Lairig Ghru. After this, there were the first bits of snow as the path sloped further up - I can see how, with more snow or a bit of ice underneath, and lack of crampons or attention one could be sent sliding down towards Lairig Ghru from here. Also, I could see a fair amount of snow on Ben Macdui from here already, while towards the left, the short climb towards Cairn Lochan was clear. So I left the Big Gray Man for another day and had a nice picnic near one of the cairns while a few flurries came down and curious grouse were observing all us Sunday hillwalkers.

Pleasant but chilly, I moved on along the ridge - this looked like fun in low visibility conditions - down and back up to Stob Coire an t-Sneachda, where it snowed a little more and I could see my revised goal cut out for me - Cairngorm's summit cairn. I was grateful that my legs carried me up the last steep, but short bit to reach the very first Munro in my life :D

My first ever Munro bagged :)

As a reward, the sun made brief appearances again to help focus my longing on future targets nicely lined up on the horizon.

My work cut out for me...

If my map reading skills are not completely rubbish (please let me know), from left to right that should be Ben Macdui himself, Cairn Toul, Sgor an Lochan Uaine, Carn na Criche, Braeriach and Sron na Lairige, with Stob Coire an t-Sneachda and Cairn Lochan in between.

I was so excited and happy about the walk that I didn't really pay much attention which ski piste I should have been walking down past the Ptarmigan station, so ended up sampling the steepest one, decided I didn't like it with all the remaining snow and took a long detour down the sizzling hot Coire Cas (sheltered from any wind) - not hugely attractive but an interesting tour of all the ski tows :wink:

CairngormNorthernCorries.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts

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Re: Cairngorm - my maiden Munro :)

Postby HalfManHalfTitanium » Mon May 21, 2018 9:15 pm

Stunning photo of the Cairngorm summits across the plateau!

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