Whiteburn's Wanderings

One man's wanderings backpacking around Scotland plus the odd digression

A few 4000’s

23-24 August 2013

I decided that the body and mind needed a decent yomp; a dawdle through the Cairngorms for a couple of days was called for.  It didn’t take long to assemble a pile of gear for stuffing into the rucksack the next morning, I don’t like down sleeping bags being compressed for longer than necessary so prefer to pack just before setting off.  I’d decided to go quite light weight dispensing with the Bug Nest in favour of a Borah Bug Bivi, the Cumulus 250 Quilt and a meths stove; all up weight was around 7kg.

I’d decided on a wander from Linn of Dee over to Carn Toul and then a return back over Braeriach and Ben MacDui, a round trip of around 52km with around 2250m of ascent.

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The best laid plans often go astray; the early start wasn’t that early; the traffic was murder; roadwork’s closing roads with abysmal diversion signs; caravans!  It was 10:30 by the time I got to the Linn of Dee, unlike some I don’t mind paying for the parking here as the NTS does provide pretty good facilities, unlike some other places, and I’ve only ever paid one day despite the motor being there sometimes for many days.

It had been a while since I’d walked up the Dee from White Bridge so I headed off east.  Around White Bridge I ran into 3 separate Duke of Edinburgh groups doing their Silver expedition, everyone seemed pretty cheerful, at least the weather was being kind to them with even a gentle breeze to keep the dreaded midge away.

From White Bridge a good single track follows the Dee up the glen, quite nice scenery but no good places for a wild camp on the east side of the river.

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It didn’t take long before Devils Point and Cairntoul to come into view dominating the west flank of the Lairig Ghru

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A little further and the Corrour bothy came into view

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I called into the bothy, everything was ship shape but no one at home.  The climb up to the bealach above the bothy was as steep as ever but soon over and done with from wher it took another 45mins to reach Cairntoul which gave fantastic views across Angels Peak and

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Even from Angels Peak the coires of Braeriach appear huge.

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But the sky looked threatening and the wind was increasing steadily, no time to sit and admire the views; I made tracks for the Wells of Dee where I planned to spend the night.  I pitched the Trailstar around 200m downstream of the springs (~ NN 940990); a nice spot with flat short grass, running water on the doorstep, at over 1200m it’s probably the highest campsite in the gorms.  It wasn’t long before the cloud dropped, the wind picked up and the first rain hit.

The morning didn’t bring much change in the weather, still low cloud and occasional rain. I was heading north following the well trodden path towards Braeriach by around 8:00am.

Visibility was only around 50m until I was around 800m descending to the Lairig Ghru and the crossing of the Allt Druidh.  I took the footpath up towards the Chalamain Gap before turning south up the path the Lurchers crag and entering the clag once again.

Lurchers and Ben MacDui came and went in the mist; I didn’t drop out of it until on the descent to the Hutchison Bothy beyond Loch Etchachan.

All that was left was the 12km yomp back to the car!

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One comment on “A few 4000’s

  1. Jono Cusack
    October 8, 2013

    Fantastic Photos 🙂

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This entry was posted on October 7, 2013 by in Trip Reports and tagged , .
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