Monday, April 14, 2014

Continuing from Aviemore tomorrow

The walk from Inverness to Aviemore went fine. Although it was mostly dry, it was extremely windy and I was glad to have my hiking poles when on the hills. Saturday and Sunday, the forecast wind was about 50mph with gusts up to 80... Leaving Inverness was a couple of hours of road walking, followed by a bit of logged forest (sad sight), followed by exposed hills before descending into Strathdearn, the valley of the River Findhorn. As it was so very windy, I decided to push on eastwards in the hope of finding some accommodation. A nice lady walking her dog knew the local bunkhouse and even called ahead to ensure there was room. Very nice of her and so I slept at the Slochd Mhor Lodge, Southwest of Tomatin. From there it was almost all through Forest Estates next morning to Aviemore, a fairly short walk compared to most days so far. Much more pleasant than the previous day though.  Again, quite a number of fences and always the same puzzle as to whether the fence is to keep you in, or out, and whether you're actually in something or outside of something, and if the direction is along the fence, on which side of the fence should I follow the fence.... In short to many fences, luckily a fair number of gates too.
I arrived in Aviemore yesterday early morning. I went first to the local information center to get information on snow in the Cairngorms, as the next part takes me through some of Scotland's highest mountains. Unfortunately, they weren't able to provide much information, but suggested that I'd talk to the rangers at the base station of the funicular to Cairngorm mountain.  That's what I did this morning, and also took the funicular to see for myself. Well, at the top it was -2 with a stiff breeze and still some snow. Lower down it was very patchy though. After also talking to the ranger, I will try to cross via the Lairig Ghru pass tomorrow. Which I was told is mostly snow free and less boggy than Strath Nethy.  Just a pity that I won't get to see Loch Avon that way. Anyway, this will take me past some serious mountains like Ben Macdui which towers over the valley at 1309m. The forecast is for fairly low winds from the south and dry weather tomorrow, so good conditions. 2-3 days to Braemar, leaving tomorrow.

1 comment:

  1. Stay dry and keep us update! Hope the foot does not hurt. It seems a real challenge, keep strong! and make lot of pics, looking forward to see those.