Friday, 16 September 2016


Ian enjoying Loch Avon in beautiful light this morning

Loch Avon yesterday evening

Loch Etchacan

Not a bad camping spot

Autumn light on the Cairngorm plateau

Loch Avon

Stag Rocks and Loch Avon beach

Shelterstone early this morning

Ben Avon from Cairngorm plateau

Shelterstone yesterday evening

The water of life, Loch Avon
Back from a couple of days out with Ian who joined me for a two day navigation course. Ian was wanting to gain a bit more confidence venturing in the mountains under his own steam. Quite keen to have a full experience, he fancied backpacking and a spot of wild camping. We headed onto the Cairngorm plateau yesterday under some lovely hot weather. Up high it was a tad cooler and more pleasant with a nice breeze. We covered lots of navigation as we wandered over some of the lesser visited tops and corries that are dotted all over the huge Macdui-Cairngorm plateau. With a risk of a thunderstorm overnight we opted to camp down at the head of Loch Avon. Loch Etchacan was an option and this is also a wonderful spot for a night out. With a nice breeze at our overnight location it kept the midge at bay. Sure enough, the weather was correct with a fairly wet night and some heavy rain. This morning dawn cloudy but by 9am there was some beautiful clear skies and fabulous Autumn colours. The fresher, westerly airflow gave beautiful light on the mountains. We headed back up the hill and made our way around the south side of Cairn Gorm and over to Ciste Mheared which gives more featureless terrain to hone the navigation on. We had clear tops over the two days, where is the cloud when you need it?! A great couple of days and some great backpacking country. We saw very few folk once we headed out across to Carn Etchacan yesterday afternoon and saw no one until Windy Ridge late today.

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