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Delaying and diversionary tactics on Meall Dearg

Delaying and diversionary tactics on Meall Dearg

Postby Graeme D » Fri Dec 24, 2010 10:38 am

Grahams included on this walk: Meall Dearg

Date walked: 23/12/2010

Time taken: 2 hours

Distance: 4.5 km

Ascent: 360m

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Today was the first full day of the school Christmas holidays, and a cracker of a day it was too. I still had some last minute Christmas shopping to take care of in Perth, but I just knew that the city centre would be like a scene from the very bowels of Hades itself, so I was less than keen to venture into that neck of the woods. It could wait until tomorrow. In any case, I had some Christmas related business to take care of in Crieff, so surely I could fit in a little detour up the Sma Glen to the Graham Meall Dearg, which looked like it would be a very short and straightforward ascent from the roadside at White Cairn.

I was clearly more than happy with this particular diversion from the unsavoury delights of the high street, but what I hadn't counted on was the 3 lorry pile-up on the Jubilee Bridge on the A9 at Dunkeld, which turned the A822 and A826 roads into main arterial routes north and south for the day. Following HGVs up the Sma Glen road from Gilmerton and through Amulree is not a very enjoyable driving experience. Maybe I should have gone shopping after all? :eh:

Anyway, by 10am I was parked up by the gate leading onto the track which then joins the line of Wade's Military Road, and 10 minutes later I had left the old road and was taking a direct line up between the crags on the eastern slopes of the hill. This is indeed a fairly inauspicious lump of a hill, but the ascent was pleasant enough over the frozen crunchy bogs under a clear blue sky in the bright midwinter sunshine.

Meall Dearg from the roadside start at White Cairn

Looking south east into the sun on General Wade's road

Lucy having fun already

Lots of animal tracks in the snow

The views soon open up to the north over the Tay Valley between Aberfeldy and Pitlochry, and over the jumble of hills beyond, but it is not really until the summit trig point is reached that the views really become anything worthwhile, with Schiehallion standing out proudly to the northwest.

Views developing to the north

Through the crags

This is what weeks of sub-zero temperatures does

Lucy investigating the icicles

North beyond the icicles

More crags

Summit in sight

Out of proportion shadow

First sighting of trig point

Loch Fender, immediately below the summit to the west, and Loch Hoil off to the northwest, were barely recognisable as bodies of water below their sheets of snow dusted ice.

Schiehallion and co.

Me and Lucifer taken from trig pillar

Lucy bags her 13th Graham

Frozen Loch Fender

After a few pictures from the summit and a chocolate bar for me and a few Shapes for Lucy, we retraced our steps and were back at the car just after 12 o'clock. It took over an hour and a half to get back to Perth mind you, most of which was spent crawling through the Methven to Perth stretch. :evil:

Back on the military road

Unusually busy A826
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Graeme D
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Re: Delaying and diversionary tactics on Meall Dearg

Postby malky_c » Fri Dec 24, 2010 10:45 am

Looks like a nice little stroll - great to get out in the sunshine. I've been staring at it through the window at work all week. 8)
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Re: Delaying and diversionary tactics on Meall Dearg

Postby baggervance » Fri Dec 24, 2010 11:39 am

malky_c wrote:Looks like a nice little stroll - great to get out in the sunshine. I've been staring at it through the window at work all week. 8)

Malky, me too (re window). I finish today until the 5th Jan and planned to go out on the 29th. I just know in the pit of my stomach that all this brilliant blue sky weather will have broken by then.

I am cursed with poor vis on the hills. Bah humbug :(

Oh, nice report Graham. Cracking dog ~ a chocolate version of the 2 I have
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Re: Delaying and diversionary tactics on Meall Dearg

Postby kevsbald » Fri Dec 24, 2010 5:58 pm

Nice wee tick, there G. I'll bet despite the traffic, it was just great to be back on the hill again. Think 28th could be my next day to the local environs! Joyeux Noel.
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Re: Delaying and diversionary tactics on Meall Dearg

Postby Merry-walker » Sun Dec 26, 2010 11:15 am

Looked a delightful diversion from the hustle bustle. Great pictures. The weather's been smashing the last few days, I'm looking into some wee'uns for my next days off. Got some pressies from Santa I'm gona try out :D
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Re: Delaying and diversionary tactics on Meall Dearg

Postby dooterbang » Sun Dec 26, 2010 11:29 am

Very nice diversion Graeme :wink:

Love the 2nd photo.

I hope that dog got a nice down jacket for xmas :lol:
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