Meall Tairneachan – an atmospheric day. January 2011

Date: Sun 9th January 2011
Distance: 9.9km
Ascent: 610m

Another set of white Perthshire roads, but a forecast for clear skies in the Southern Highlands. Drove off in the dark on the snow-covered roads with plans to see where we got to. Dispensed with the Glen Lyon plan and headed for Meall Tairneachan as we were only managing a slow crawl.

I’d spent some time pondering this one – didn’t really fancy the Mine road and had looked at another track heading from a bit further S on the same road.

Parked up at NN 772 535 – there’s space for 1 car. Headed up the snowy track disturbing 1 Field Hare and a flight of 10 male Black Grouse. The morning was looking interesting:

Still a fair bit of cloud upwind to the NW but the sun was having a go:

The Carn Mairg group to the SW was looking just visible in snow showers:

Soon after we were swallowed to – wind-driven snow and spindrift had us covering up:

We followed the track around Meall Dubh Mor as far as it’s near point to Creag Chean (NN 791 532) – at times in the snow it was hard to actually tell where the track was.

Heaed over the NW shoulder of Creag Chean heading for its bealach with Meall Tairneachan. As ever getting any feel for distance and perspective is tricky in these conditions.

Got up to the SW arm of the Corbett and the snow stopped:

Rounded the S of the 780m top and a few patches of blue appeared:

Headed N into the easy-angled gap between the 780m top and the summit – the sun made a weak appearance:

Walked round the ridge to the summit and some views appeared:

Sat down for some eats at the summit and the world brightened considerably. The forecast had suggested sun to the SE spreading W. In truth the W was sunny and this spread E.

No matter – sunshine and snow.

Schiehallion:

Farragon Hill:

Carn Mairg Group and Lawers:

40 minutes on the summit – parky but worth it to see the transformation. Tore ourselves away eventually:

Snowscapes:

780m summit:

We reversed route – and it was like a new day. The route has substantial views throughout to Blair Atholl, Gaick, Drumochter, Section 4 and Schiehallion.

Hazel and Meall Tairneachan:

Schiehallion:

Meall Tairneachan from Creag Chean:

Ben Alder from Creag Chean:

Gaick Pass:

Loch Kinardochy from Meall Dubh Mor:

Back at the car:

An excellent winter walk – quite a day of 2 halves for us. Certainly one we’d do again sometime.

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