Mountain Bothy Association take on maintenance of remote Cairngorms refuge

The Mountain Bothy Association have taken on responsibility for repairing and maintaining the Garbh Choire Refuge.

The Refuge is situated in one of the more remote climbing areas in the Cairngorms. Although usage has been light compared to other shelters in the area, it has played a significant role in the development of both rock and ice climbing in the area and is an important part of Cairngorm mountaineering heritage. It was originally built by Aberdeen University Lairig Club approximately 50 years ago.

Looking across An Garbh Choire towards Braeriach

The refuge is a steel frame covered with stone. It is in a poor state of repair and without some attention will undoubtedly deteriorate further. There has been strong feeling amongst many local walkers and climbers that it should be retained as a shelter, particularly for heritage reasons, but also because it may save lives in an emergency.

The building’s owner, the National Trust for Scotland (Mar Lodge Estate), has agreed that we should assume responsibility for its ongoing maintenance. There will be no rebuild as such with the original structure being retained and a new weatherproof covering being fitted. The door and small window will probably need to be replaced and perhaps a new wooden floor laid as well. We hope that the repairs will go ahead in the late spring.

The building will continue to be used as an emergency shelter only. It is not intended for planned overnight stays.

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