We started at Fishers Hotel, walked up the road, RIGHT at the Auld Smiddy Inn and followed the signs up past the woodlands, to the Bealach Path and then stopped at the bench. Just past there the path split to the RIGHT for Ben Vrachie. As we ascended the conditions got progressively wintry - mainly sleet, hail and snow but with blustery wind.
The snow was thicker once we got past the loch and the ascent up the steps was quite icy, although the snow was fresh, there had been a few walkers up and down already. At the top, the wind was very strong, and snow being blasted horizontally at you made seeing very challenging. Glad to get off the top, and found the downward to the loch just as challenging as going up. Glad I had two walking sticks for support.
Once at the loch, we turned right, to follow the path where it rejoined the Bealach path - this section was quite boggy. Once at the point where it rejoined the Bealach Path we turned RIGHT to take the path down to Killiecrankie. Path boggy and soggy in places but not too troublesome.
The NTS Visitor Centre at Killiecrankie was closed (although it was supposed to open on 1 April but they were doing refurb work and is due to open at Easter on 19 April). No toilets open either,(sign said nearest at Blair Atholl or Pitlochry!) but luckily the Bungjee Jumping office next door was open and the staff very kindly let us buy some hot drinks/snacks and use their toiilets. Thanks guys! Got some useful information leaflets for potential future adrenalin trips.
Then it was easy to follow the path back to Pitlochry following the River Garry... and the sun came out. I had been tempted to cross the River by the Garry Bridge and follow the path to cross the Tummel at the coronation bridge, and then cross back to Pitlochry by the Dam / Fish Ladder, but the walking group were already pretty leg weary from the day's trip. About 15 miles all in.
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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.