A cracking day Carn an Fhreiceadhain (The lookout hill) a Corbett near Kingussie.

Our hill

Yesterday we had our first Bus meet with my local Moray Mountaineering Club since the dark days of COVID. The committee had decided to use this day to introduce new members to the Club. The Venuer was Kingussie andr we got picked up by the bus in Forres. The journeys down in sparking weather was grand and all the bus was chatting it was great to see folk again. How we have missed out socially after COVID but all was well organised. Our local bus company Maynes were superb the driver Joss took us effortlessly to Kingussie.

Càrn an Fhreiceadain is an easily reached but fairly featureless Monadhliath Corbett with good views. Landrover tracks up onto the plateau can make for rapid going on a circuit from Kingussie.

Region: Cairngorms

Altitude: 878 metres

There was the usual plan that the bus would stop at Elgin, Forres and Inverness to pick up more members then head to Kingussie drop most of the group of some were climbing at the local Kingussie crag the majority split into two groups for the local Corbett. We normally do not go in big groups but did today. Chatting with many old and new friends. A few arrived by car meeting us in Kingussie. It was the ideal hill to introduce folk to the mountains. The estate road means you can do a circular tour of our hill.

There was no rush and we were away from Kingussie by just after 0900. A few went navigating with Sandy from Newtonmore walking back to Kingussie. It was a big group that started of from the golf course and split up at Pitman Lodge in two groups. It was sunny and with a slight breeze the sun tan lotion was on. Folk were chatting a really mixed group some getting a day off from looking after the kids others just seeing if they fancied the hills.

Our dietary expert enjoying his starter on the hill watched by Loki.

We had some great stops chilling out and though the area is featureless grouse moors . sthey have a beauty of wildness only broken by a few wind farms in the distance. We saw a couple of young deer and a slow worm basking on the track. This area is managed for grouse shooting and we met one of the ghillies. He was fine and we are so lucky to have Freedom of Access on our hills. This was a constant battle over the years to get this Right to Roam. Many countries are envious of these rights but with it comes respect for the land and the estate managers.

Everyone went well all enjoying the views we could see the Munro’s and big hills on a 360 degree vista today. I was at the back and the pace was fine a lot of fit young folk. We passed on the odd snippet e route and met two mountain bikers on the way to the first summit. This is where we met our other group hence the big photo. We had already had lunch out of the wind it was a grand place to stop and enjoy the peace.

Near the top. Photo D. MacLeish

The summit was a trig point and a wee building it could be a Colby Camp?

They are ruins of shelters, windbreaks etc on the summits of hills across the Highlands left by OS parties during the principal triangulation of Britain in the 19th century. Colby and his men lived for weeks on lots of mountains taking bearings to other summits when weather permitted. Hardy men. On one trip Colby recce camp sites and triangulation stations over mountainous terrain. He is recorded as walking 586 miles in 22 days , including Sundays! The only summit he failed to reach was the Cuillin in Skye. SMC J 2013 

Colby camps 

There are only records of nine camps where ruins can still be seen. However, there are lots of hills where OS parties are known to have lived for many weeks but where no remains have been recorded. Ben Wyvis, The Storr, Ben More on Mull are just a few such hills. Have you seen any ruins on your travels?

Howf near summit ?

From here we followed the track into the Glen out of the wind passed the lookout point a stunning cairn.

Look out point .
On the summit !

it was sunny and warm. There was no rush we had a break down by the river. There is a lot of erosion here the power of the river can be seen on the river banks. Most followed Graham to the Loch adding a few more miles and I ambled down the track to the bus. We had soup and sandwiches organised for everyone at the Grant Arms Hotel and as all the groups arrived back it was so good to see everyone had a great day. There was lots of chat tales of climbing and plans for future walks and bus meets.

Soup and sandwiches a great end to the day.

In all a superb wander the weather was perfect as was the company. I had lost two pals last week so it was great to be out on the hills again. The hills and wild places are so good for your well being and mental health. Normally I am alone or with a few pals on the hill but it was wonderful to see how much folk enjoyed their day. The smiles sun burnt faces and the chat as we ate told all.

I hope most who were out join the club and have great adventures on the hills and wild places. Thanks to Al and the committee for organising the day out. Have l look on the club website for more information.


About heavywhalley.MBE

Mountain Rescue Specialist. Environmentalist. Spent 37 years with RAF Mountain Rescue and 3 years with a civilian Team . Still an active Mountaineer when body slows, loves the wild places.
This entry was posted in Corbetts and other hills, Cycling, Family, Mountain Biking, mountain safety, Mountaineering, People, Rock Climbing, Weather, Well being, Wildlife. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to A cracking day Carn an Fhreiceadhain (The lookout hill) a Corbett near Kingussie.

  1. loelle15 says:

    Reblogged this on The Moray Mountaineering Club and commented:
    What a wonderful write up. Thank you, Heavy!

    Liked by 1 person

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