After the soaking wet day on Mayar and Driesh the day before, the weather forecast for the day finally was accurate. No rain and good visibility promised a nice day out in Glen Mark. Again, Mrs Zatapathique accompanied me. Mount Keen would be her 4th Munro and my 50th.
We left the car at the Invermark car park at the head of Glen Esk and set out into Glen Mark.
After one hour, we reached the Queen's Well with its granite arches. I tried to imagine what happened back in 1861. Queen victory throning on her pony on the way from Balmoral, addressing her entourage by "We feel thirsty. Find us a well!" Reading about it later, the well was already known at the time. After the royal visit, one Lord Dalhousie built the granite arches in shape of a royal crown above it.
Behind the well, the path rose steeply besides the Ladder Burn to reach the Cairngorms plateau.
With the excellent track, the ascent was easy, and we quickly came to the point where the path to Mount Keen's summit forked off.
The path on Mount Keen's south ridge steepened, and I let Mrs Zatapathique go at her own slower pace and reached the summit some ten minutes before her. Of her four Munros, one was the most southerly (Ben Lomond), one the most Easterly (Mount Keen).
We had a small banana and cookie lunch, then went back the same way we had come, spending some time taking pictures of caterpillars.
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Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.