Footprints Across Scotland
Why not make a few of your own!
14th September 2008
A long approach onto the White Mounth to visit Carn a' Choire Bhoidheach
On Sunday I headed off towards Ballater then south across the river Dee and into Glen Muick. I had time for a quick brew before John arrived at 8.30. After readying our packs and bikes we cycled out along the north shore of Loch Muick under slightly grey skies. On reaching the west end of the Loch we left our mounts leaning against the dry stone wall that encloses the lodge and a number of pine trees.
Fir Trees at the west end of Loch Muick
As we left the trees and followed the path up the hillside we could see the impressive cliffs of Creag an Dubh Loch ahead. En route we passed the first of a number of fast flowing waterfalls that we would see during the day.
Waterfall outflow from Loch Buidhe
As we continued occasional breaks in the cloud allowed splashes of sun to lighten the dark stone slabs of the crags above the loch.
Creag an Dubh Loch
Reaching the shores of Dubh loch the second waterfall of the day could be seen cascading down over the multi-coloured granite of Eagles rock opposite.
Waterfall over Eagles Rock
The path at the side of the Loch was fairly boggy causing us to stray from any sort of direct line.
Dubh Loch and Crags
Shortly after the Loch the way steepened slightly. It is normally possible at this point to head up the centre of the burn, picking away across the many slabs that line the path of the river. However the recent rains had swelled the flow and wetted the rocks. Instead we picked our way along by the waters side following a vague path. On reaching the barren moor above the cascades we used a line of old iron fence posts to guide the way.
John below Eagles Rock
The fence posts eventually intersected a path running around the flank of Carn an t-Sagairt Mor. We followed this as it turned north west and up towards the large grassy plateau of the white Month.
Looking back on Dubh Loch
It was a steady climb up onto the rounded hillside the path leading near the cliff edge at the Stuic. It was at this point that we gained our first views across Loch nan Eun to Lochnagar.
Lochnagar over Loch nan Eun
Soon after a small cairn marked the start of a narrow path that lead the short distance across to the top of Carn a' Choire Bhoidheach. This was my third visit to this summit but Johns previous two attempts has been thwarted by bad weather, it was third time lucky for him.
Lochnagar from Carn a' Choire Bhoidheach
We deviated from the usual route down by following the ridge line of Creag a' Ghlas Uillt. A number of mountain hares darted from their cover as we made our way across short heather and many boulders. A couple of large groups of Ptarmigan also appeared suddenly from the undergrowth immediately taking flight. On approaching the end of the ridge near Craig Moseen we dropped off the ridge heading east. Making for a footbridge we picked up the path as it crossed the waters of Glas Allt. Further on the path steepened as it led down to the foot of our last waterfall of the day. A misplaced foot got very wet while trying to balance on some stepping stones for a last photo.
Waterfall above Glas Allt Shiel
Back at the loch side we were soon on our bikes to cycle the last few K back to the car park.
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