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Tom Buidhe and Tolmount

Sunday 24 December 2006

Travelling up to Aberdeen for the Christmas break Anna and I stopped off at Glen Clova en route for a day’s hillwalking with Susan Low and Ian Cameron. 

We decided to climb Tom Buidhe and Tolmount at the head of Glen Doll.  This meant heading up Jock’s Road to start with which extends for fourteen miles and ends at Braemar. 

We walked past a small bothy on the way that was built on the spot where five hill walkers were caught in a blizzard and died in 1959.  The bothy is very spartan with an earth floor.  It is only really an emergency shelter in extreme conditions.

 Davy's Bourach

From the shelter we headed North West across the moor to the broad saddle between Meikle Kilrannoch and Tom Buidhe.  From there it was a short journey to the summit of the first Munro of the day. 

It was windy on the summit so we decided not to stop there for lunch but to continue on the next Munro Tolmount.  We also thought there would be better views of the main Cairngorm massif to the north from this other summit. 

 Memorial plaque to hill walkers

There turned out to the be the case.  There was hardly any snow at all on the mountains.  This had some advantages for us as it made it easier to spot the mountain hares on the tops.  They have already changed to their distinctive winter coats so it made it easier for us (and predators?) to spot them.

 Susan and Ian having lunch

After Tolmount we headed north east to rejoin Jocks Road.  The path took us over Crow Craigies and back to the shelter beneath Cairn Lunkard.  From here it was a short walk back along Glen Doll to the car park.

 Susan and Anna with northern Cairngorms in the distance

Glen Clova Hotel is great for a beer after a day in the hills but unfortunately, probably because it was Christmas Eve, the Hotel was closed.  We drove back to Kirriemuir and followed signs for the A90 main road to Aberdeen.  We were able to stop at the Finavon Hotel for a good coffee before the journey back home.

Ian's photos from the day are available here.