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Beaten back by the cold on Ben Vrackie

Beaten back by the cold on Ben Vrackie


Postby sloosh » Mon Jan 11, 2010 9:39 pm

Route description: Ben Vrackie, near Pitlochry

Corbetts included on this walk: Ben Vrackie

Date walked: 11/01/2010

Time taken: 3 hours

Distance: 6 km

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2010-01-11_Ben Vrackie.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts



Didn't complete this old favourite of mine as the wind chill was as severe as I've ever walked in (felt about -20) and having climbed it dozens of times over the years it was an easy decision to turn back at the wee lochain just before the steep bit. A few walkers were out and about and some persevered and headed for the summit.

Thought I'd throw up a few photos anyway.

Must say I was impressed that the council had cleared the car park at some stage so it was usable.
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Car park


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Prepared?


Weather was pretty mild at about 1 degree C at the car park.

Path was quite well walked and compacted so the microspikes got their first proper workout. Great on the consolidated snow and any icy bits.

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Looking west at the deer fence


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Wee burn you have to cross on the way up

The snow banking gave way when I was crossing this on the way back down and I took a tumble. Ended up lying on my back in the burn with the hurty-bum I got when I landed on the stones. Ouch.

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Centre: Ben Vrackie summit


Some drifting snow on the way up but this was the deepest drift we encountered and this was where the windchill really began to bite. There are some big boulders here and we stopped to get a bit of shelter and a cuppa. Made the decision to turn back.
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drifting snow


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Ben Vrackie with frozen lochain in the foreground (left of path)


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Drifting snow
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Re: Beaten back by the cold on Ben Vrackie

Postby mountain coward » Tue Jan 12, 2010 3:20 am

I find the windchill an absolute killer. I was out 2 days in a row on our moor in the waist-deep snowdrifts - the first day was a terrible wind chill and I came back exhausted (I'd had to have my gloves off most of the time to take photos). The second day was sunny and had no windchill at all and, although I worked a lot harder, I felt much less tired. I think maybe we underestimate how tiring windchill is sometimes... Great that you got as far as you did and took those pics for us! :) Another hill I've been looking at for quite some time...
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Re: Beaten back by the cold on Ben Vrackie

Postby Paul Webster » Tue Jan 12, 2010 9:30 am

Like the drift pic! Amazing how this weather has changed the effort needed to get anywhere so much.
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Re: Beaten back by the cold on Ben Vrackie

Postby sloosh » Tue Jan 12, 2010 9:31 am

mountain coward wrote:I find the windchill an absolute killer.


Me too!

mountain coward wrote:I was out 2 days in a row on our moor in the waist-deep snowdrifts - the first day was a terrible wind chill and I came back exhausted (I'd had to have my gloves off most of the time to take photos). The second day was sunny and had no windchill at all and, although I worked a lot harder, I felt much less tired. I think maybe we underestimate how tiring windchill is sometimes... Great that you got as far as you did and took those pics for us! :) Another hill I've been looking at for quite some time...


I was out rummaging about in the woods near Dunkeld exploring caves and a glacial feature called the rocking stone a few days ago and there was windchill with a bit of a bite as we got to the higher ground but it wasn't too bad and it made for a pleasant day wading through snowdrifts in bright sunshine so I kind of expected something similar but the windchill on Ben Vrackie was vicious, especially as, like you, I had the gloves off at various points to take pictures. I maybe should have paid more heed to the MWIS warning of 'severe wind chill feeling like -20' - they were spot on. :)

Ben Vrackie is definitely worth climbing if you're in the area.


Some pics of the area around Dunkeld.

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Cave is a geological feature that has been adapted by some enterprising soul at some point in history.

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One of the cave entrances


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Entrance is well hidden (just to the right of the waterfall)


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Other cave entrance


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Looking across Dunkeld


The Rocking Stone. It doesn't rock. I tried. :)
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The Rocking Stone


This is the area I was rummaging about in by Dunkeld. (Ignore the wrong turn onto the lower path south of the cave - it was hard to find them in the snow :lol: )


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Re: Beaten back by the cold on Ben Vrackie

Postby sloosh » Tue Jan 12, 2010 9:31 am

Paul Webster wrote:Like the drift pic! Amazing how this weather has changed the effort needed to get anywhere so much.

Thanks. It was about the only glimpse of sunshine there was all day.
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Re: Beaten back by the cold on Ben Vrackie

Postby Alan S » Tue Jan 12, 2010 11:58 pm

Ben Vrackie is definitely worth climbing if you're in the area.


Cheers sloosh nice pics
Im planning on heading up there at some point this year but not if the snow is like that :shock:
Was camping in pitlochry a few years ago and planned to walk up with the wife but had a pit stop at the moulin inn and never got any further than that :)
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Re: Beaten back by the cold on Ben Vrackie

Postby mountain coward » Wed Jan 13, 2010 1:45 am

The caves by Dunkeld look interesting - I'll have to make a stop next time I'm going up the A9 and have a mooch around...
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Re: Beaten back by the cold on Ben Vrackie

Postby neilfromperth » Wed May 09, 2012 4:39 pm

With regard to the "rocking stone" above Dunkeld, it used to rock , but some health and safety killjoy from the council decided it was a risk and stones were jammed underneath to stop the rocking.

Vrackie is a great hill in the under winter conditions. I go up at least once mid week (nothing compared to Lindsey from Pitlochry who is trying for a minimum of 350 ascents this year) and love it under a blanket of snow. Mid week in winter have often the hill to myself, unlike this time of year , today it was like Perth High Street! :D
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Re: Beaten back by the cold on Ben Vrackie

Postby sloosh » Wed May 09, 2012 5:21 pm

neilfromperth wrote:With regard to the "rocking stone" above Dunkeld, it used to rock , but some health and safety killjoy from the council decided it was a risk and stones were jammed underneath to stop the rocking.

Ah, that explains it. Cheers. :thumbup:

Vrackie is a great hill in the under winter conditions. I go up at least once mid week (nothing compared to Lindsey from Pitlochry who is trying for a minimum of 350 ascents this year) and love it under a blanket of snow. Mid week in winter have often the hill to myself, unlike this time of year , today it was like Perth High Street! :D

More moons ago than I care to remember I used to climb it 3 or 4 times a week just for the workout - back then you hardly ever used to see another soul except during the summer when you'd meet maybe half a dozen people on a really busy day. Now you meet that many people in the car park lol.
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