Glen Feshie and Rothiemurchus Munros
Sgor Gaoith (1118m, Munro 36)
Mullach Clach a'Bhlair (1019m, Munro 114)
walking : 7hr*, running : 2:30hr
*Naismith's rule : 4km/h distance + 600m/h ascent
Main route summary
Sgor Gaoith and Mullach Clach a'Bhlair lie in the heart of Rothiemurchus - 10,000 acres of Caledonian Forest, Lochs, Rivers, Glens, Mountains, and wild landscapes.
Heather, juniper and forests cover the lower slopes, whereas upper ground is flat and diffcult to navigate on in mist.
Many features of the last ice-age can be picked out in various places on this route.
The two Munros in this group couldn't be more different - Sgor Gaoith is craggy on its east side with long drops, whereas Mullach Clach a'Bhlair is the highest point on a vast plateau south-west of Braeriach and Cairn Toul.
|main route outline||print route|
- This route starts from a car-park, ½km north of the house at Auchlean, which is at the end of the public road heading down Glen Feshie on the east side of the River Feshie.
- A narrow road also heads down the west side of the river, but cars have to be left more than 1km further north than the car-park on the east side.
Mullach Clach a'Bhlair
- Leave the car-park and head 500m south down the road.
- Just before Auchlean, a cairn marks the start of the Moine Path heading east over the heather.
- Follow this fine path through a forest and up the western shoulder of Carn Ban Mor (which used to be a Munro).
- At a slight levelling at 750m and just before the last haul up Carn Ban Mor, a faint path heads off north-east.
- This path climbs gently around, and to the north of Carn Ban Mor, from where a faint path is followed to Sgor Gaoith's summit.
- Having hauled yourself up gradual, wide slopes, the crags and rocky summit come as quite a suprise.
Choice of return
- Return towards Carn Ban Mor and continue to the small cairn on the summit.
- After aiming south-south-west for 350m, you'll come across the Moine path again.
- If in mist, turn left (south-east) onto the path and follow it until a track heading south-west is met, which should be followed for 3km to a junction with a track coming up from Glenfeshie Lodge.
- Alternatively, if visibility is good, then from Carn Ban Mor, just aim south until you eventually meet up with the track and follow it to the junction.
- From this junction, the track heads south-west for 500m, then starts to contour around the eastern side of the Mullach Clach a'Bhlair's summit - look out for a path, marked by a small pile of stones, heading off right.
- This path carries on for another 500m to the small untidy cairn on the disappointing summit.
- Get back onto the track and head back to the junction with the track coming up from Glenfeshie Lodge.
Follow the track down towards Glenfeshie Lodge for 1km to where it levels out at around 750m.
- Either...for a shorter and tougher route, come of the track and onto a faint path heading west above the edge of Coire Garbhlach.
Reach the summit of Meall nan Sleac at 800m (there is a cairn on the summit, I've had to re-build it more than once after some idiot destroyed it), then head north-west down heather to cross the Allt Garbhlach.
A fine path is picked up and followed though the heather to the forest and back to Auchlean.
Crossing the Allt Fhearnagan on the way can be problematic in spate.
- Or...for a more gentle and longer return, continue to follow the track down towards the River Feshie. Through some sweet-smelling juniper fields, the flat ground aside the River Feshie is reached where a junction in the track is met.
Turn right (north) and follow a fine path through forestry.
The path crosses a couple of burns (difficult in spate) that tumble down from the Moine Mor and meets up with the road at Auchlean which is followed back to the car-park.