Lochnagar Backpack including my 100th Munro Day 2

I woke up about 5.30 having slept pretty well. Actually very well for me. I’m not a great sleeper in a tent. The sun was shining but there was a bit of ice on the scarp. Sian was still asleep so went for a wander and was rewarded with a sighting of some deer.

Deer with Carn an Tuirc in the distance
Deer with Carn an Tuirc in the distance
Loch Callater
Loch Callater

We had a leisurely camp breakfast, muesli with powdered milk and green tea, whilst the heat of the sun melted the ice on the tent before we broke camp. By now it was wall to wall blue sky, a perfect day to be up high and not too bad to mark my 100th munro.

All of todays route can be found on this map which will open in a new window

In such perfect conditions it would be a shame to rush so we took the scenic route via the munro top of Fafernie at exactly 1000m high. Walking over the plateau to the top  there are fine views towards Carn an Tuirc, Tom Buidhe and beyond. From Fafernie its a kilometer of easy walking to my 100th munro Cairn Bannoch (1012m)

Me on Cairn Bannoch my 100th munro
Me on Cairn Bannoch my 100th munro
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Looking back to Carn an t-Sagairt Mor from Cairn Bannoch. Our campsite was between the snow fields

So after a celebratory “9 bar” and some photos we set off for our next munro, Broad Cairn, via the circuitous route of tops Cairn of Gowal and Creag an Dubh-loch both 983m. The walking was very easy until a final clamber up to the bouldery top of Broad Cairn (998m), munro 101 for me and 93 for Sian.

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Broad Cairn on the right with Loch Muick centre in the distance
Mountain Hare
Mountain Hare
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Looking back from Broad Cairn, Cairn Bannoch and Carn an t-Sagairt Mor in view

Broad Cairn was our final muro of the trip but there was still some fine walking ahead. We slowly picked our way down the bouldery shoulder of the mountain eventually picking up a good path. At this point we met our first person of the day, pushing a mountain bike up! We exchanged a few words although he was too short of breath to say much. Mad!

From the col above Corrie Ghash we left the path and struck out for the top of Sandy Hillock (768m). The cairn there made a suitable seat for the classic backpackers lunch of Primula cheese spread and oat cakes washed down with sawyer mini filtered water and the sun was still shining 🙂 🙂 🙂

Suitably refreshed we made our way back to the main path and continued our route high above Loch Muick enjoying some fine views.

Lock Muick
Lock Muick
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Looking back as Allt an Dubh-loch flows down to Loch Muick. Broad Cairn and Cairn Bannoch on the left and last nights campsite by the snowfields in the middle just below Carn an t-Sagairt Mor in the distance.

After about a further three kilometers of gradual descent we were back down at loch level and  amongst the crowds. We were then soon back at the car park at Spittal of Glenmuick relieved to see that our extended stay had gone unnoticed.

Day 2
Day two’s map and statistics. Click on the map to be taken to the social hiking page

Over the two days we walked 27.7 miles and climbed 5,100ft and “bagged” five munros. It was our first Cairngorm backpack, it certainly won’t be our last.

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