My buddy is getting too old for this lark but he made a good fist of it today. Seemed spur of the moment but when he called and had that bag thing ready I was already in the car while he looked for his booties.
We stopped at the shop for some food but more on that later.
The trip over to Loch Earn didn't take too long and we arrived at the Ardvorlich bridge to some blue skies and wicked little showers that fluffed up the jacket nicely.
The idea was to head up the Ardvorlich burn and then head East to pick up the ridge from Creagan an Lochain over Domhnuill and then onto the top, seemed a reasonable plan but it turned out to be harder than expected. Following the fine track past the farm and big house we were soon on the fell and through three gates. There is no dog gate on the first, the second had a swinging bar below the lowest rung and it is only the third that actually has a dog gate. Beware if you've put on a few pounds as you'll need some help! Following the track we took a left turn and forded the burn near the top of the woods beyond the first little hydro-dam and then followed a quad bike track around the shoulder of An Dunan to the North East. Easy going until we abandoned the track and took to the heather. Our first stop was on the SE slopes of Greagan an Lochain above the little tarn.
A few flurries of snow came in as we traversed the peat hags across to Beinn Domhnuill, this was not easy , no single line gave an easy walk and the peat was deep, soft and black. From Beinn Domhnuill we had some fine view to the North under the cloud while we had a short break and found a snack in the bag.
The final pull up onto Meal na Fearna was a boulder slope, a change to the peat hags, the light dusting of damp snow made the rocks a bit slippery but we reached the top with a snow shower that was a tad chilly.
With no view and the weather closing in we didn't stay long, and raced down toward the Ardvorlich burn where we found shelter and listened to the roaring stags. He produced some sandwiches and was not going to share them until I pointed out the error of his ways. They were ham and mustard, better without mustard but they had to do.
Didn't take long to get down to the car. It would have been better to find the track on the East side of the burn earlier but we got there eventually. After a quick splash in Loch Earn to clean off the peat we had the heaters on and were warming up. We left as a big shower came through, great timing.
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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.