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Trekking

Ben Macdui and the Cairngorm Plateau

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Ben Macdui and the Cairngorm Plateau

There are a few ways to approach the summit of Scotland's second highest mountain, Ben Macdui.  The walk from Linn o' Dee, near Braemar, was recently voted as one of the best in Britain. I also like to approach from the Aviemore side, starting at the ski centre gives more time to explore the vast plateau of the Cairngorms. 

Ben Macdui summit

Ben Macdui summit

Either way you go, if you look closely, you'll be sure to see some rare wildlife and fascinating mountain flora. The views from the top of Ben Macdui can be vast on a good day. A short walk from the summit and you can peer into the Lairig Ghru and watch the river Dee start it's journey to the sea, passing the door of Corrour Bothy and heading down Glen Dee.

Mountain Bike heading down into the Lairig!

Mountain Bike heading down into the Lairig!

Nothing compares to strolling over a high plateau. As Nan Shepherd said, "these hills hold astonishment for me. There is no getting accustomed to them".  This is so true.  Anyone that's been on the Cairngorm plateau, the true summit of the hill, knows how it feels to walk up there.  On a summer's day you can wander over the soft woolly fringe moss and skip over the slabs of granite, looking down into the lochs and drink the fresh spring water from the burns. In winter, the hills turn to mountains and they can be unforgiving, not a place for the untrained.  Even a summer's day can be brutal, so pick your day carefully and know how to navigate if you go alone. 

If you'd like to join me on a guided walk of the Cairngorm plateau please get in touch.

Looking down into Loch A'an

Looking down into Loch A'an

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Carn an Tuirc

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Carn an Tuirc

A hill I’ve been up many times, although this time views were perfect. One of those days where clouds and hills merge together off and on. Big cumulus clouds floating over the tops bringing flurries of snow in their path but luckily mostly avoiding us to the north. 

The walk up from Loch Callater gives opportunity to peer into Coire Loch Kander too, where you can view the gullies and cornices from a safe distance. This way up also has the added benefit of a stop off at the bothy and the views over Loch Callater, almost completely frozen in April. 

Jo suggested this route as our plan B and it didn’t disappoint. Lots of folks on the hills for such a beautiful day. Very jealous of the two kite boarders who seemed to cover about the whole of Glenshee and White Mounth Munros in about an hour but if you go that fast you miss the views!!

Photos below :)

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Cairngorm stroll - 2nd April 2017

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Cairngorm stroll - 2nd April 2017

Cairngorm stroll - 2nd April 2017

What fantastic conditions we had for our guided walk on Sunday. A light wind over the tops giving a little wind chill but nothing significant. Snow patches on the north and east slopes receding away and soft to walk on.  We headed on a snow free walk, over to look down on the Pools of Dee in the Lairig Ghru, then to look into Loch Avon, stopping for lunch above the corries. We completed our day with a walk up Cairn Gorm to take in the spectacular views with excellent visibility over the Moray Firth and over the Cairngorm National Park.

One of our clients was a keen bird enthusiast and was delighted to see the Ptarmigan, Snow Buntings and a Ring Ouzel on our way down. It was a really special day all round with lots of smiles!

Our views can be seen in the short video.

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