Beinn Dearg

Beinn Dearg above Atholl, 8 February 2020

A blog post from one of our mountain adventures in the Scottish hills and mountains. We were out on a guided bike-hike up Glen Bruar to Beinn Dearg in wintery conditions. Richard Kermode was leading.

Beinn Dearg above Atholl

I met up with our group at Calvine with much trepidation after some good conversations about our plans with storm Ciara due to arrive anytime - this weekend was supposed to have two bike-hikes - Beinn Dearg today and Carn a'Chlamain tomorrow, but we'd already taken the decision to cancel Sunday based on the awful forecast for this day ! Today there looked to be a window of opportunity so we decided to go for it and set off on our long cycle to Bruar Lodge on the excellent vehicle track. It was already pretty windy but the morning squalls had dried up and we enjoyed a fairly bright sunny cycle in to the lodge. From the highest point on the track onwards, we even had fine views of Beinn Dearg in the distance.

Once in at the lodge we stashed the bikes and hid in the woods for a cuppa and something to eat. The big black highland cow that often lurks here seemed pleased to have company through it didn't come over to join us!

Our hill-route picked up a stalkers path and we climbed into the fresh snow quickly making good time and taking in some good views back down Glen Bruar. We knew our weather-window would close by around 2pm, so pressed on. We were soon layering up as the wind picked up and blew snow into every nook and cranny. Pretty soon we were on the final summit slopes having met another adventurer who had come in from Blair Atholl. The cairn on the top of Beinn Dearg afforded some shelter for us to put on goggles and more clothing before we set off back down the way we had come.

It didn't take long to get out of the spindrift and soon the views were back though the clouds were racing in. Back in the trees for a late lunch and then the arduous cycle back out with fierce headwinds all the way making it more of a challenge than it usually would be. The final insult was some squalls of wet weather so the final hill climb and descent were not places to linger!!

Back at the cars we all piled in to our vehicle and headed for home well pleased with our day.

More photos by Richard Kermode and Mary Kiernan are here on Flickr.

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