Carn Ealasaid

Carn Ealasaid from the Lecht

Hillwalking route up Carn Ealasaid from the Lecht Ski Centre

Starting from a height of the 635m by the Lecht Ski Centre, a fairly easy and short hillwalking route can be made over grass and heather to Carn Ealasaid.

Route outline


Carn Ealasaid

Ascent 300m (980ft)
Distance 7km (4m)
Time 2:15hr
Start/finish Lecht Ski Centre
Grid Ref : NJ247129
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The Lecht Ski Centre, is the starting point for this fairly easy and short hillwalking route to Carn Ealasaid.

The route follows ski roads to the top of ski-tows and onto the crest and summit of the minor top of Beinn a' Chruinnich. Thereafter, faint trods can be traced through stunted heather up to Carn Ealasaid's summit.

With a car-shuffle or other transport arrangements, the route could be extended down a rough estate track to end by Cock Bridge.

Route map

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Route description

1. Getting to The Lecht

Lecht Ski Centre

Lecht Ski Centre

In the Eastern Highlands, the A939 connects Ballater to Tomintoul. Now a section on the scenic 'SnowRoads', this smooth but somewhat twisty road climbs and descends several times and crosses The Lecht Ski Centre, a few miles south of Tomintoul.

There are two large parking areas either side of the ski centre's main complex though parking may be a bit tight if skiing is taking place.

Should skiing be in full swing, it is also worth noting that depending on the tows in operation and ski-runs being used, you may have to veere slightly further south at the beginning of this hillwalk to avoid clashing with skiers.

2. Carn Ealasaid

Carn Ealasaid from Carn Mhic an Toisich

Carn Ealasaid from Carn Mhic an Toisich

Starting by the Lecht Ski Centre's main building, aim southwards for another smaller green building below 'The Grouse' ski-tow.

Behind this building, a rough track aims south-west and begins to climb uphill. Within 200m, the track turns west, climbs a height of 100m and meets with a stone cairn-cum-seating construction by the top of a couple of ski-tows.

Veer right (north) and follow the track as it continues up Beinn a' Chruinnich and onto its summit by the top of the Harrier ski-tow, the longest in the resort.

Turning west and away from the track, follow a faint trod through heather down to the peat-hag bealach between Beinn a' Chruinnich and Carn Ealasaid.

Carn Ealasaid with Ben Avon beyond from Beinn a' Chruinnich

Carn Ealasaid with Ben Avon beyond from Beinn a' Chruinnich

A rather gentle climb up 100m following a worn path through stunted and burnt heather, leads onto Carn Ealasaid's summit with its small untidy cairn.

Carn Ealasaid with Ben Avon beyond from Beinn a' Chruinnich

Carn Ealasaid with Ben Avon beyond from Beinn a' Chruinnich

3. Return

Looking back to Beinn a' Chruinnich from Carn Ealasaid

Looking back to Beinn a' Chruinnich from Carn Ealasaid

For most, a simple about-turn on Carn Ealasaid's summit and re-trace of footsteps, returns to the Lecht Ski Centre.

On Carn Ealasaid's summit, a rough estate track can be seen heading southwards along the hill's summit crest. This track travels over Cairn Vaich and downhill to return to the roadside by Cock Bridge, therefore making for a fine alternative route if transport can be arranged to save a walk of 4km back uphill on the A939.

Route profile »

Maps and GPX downloads »

Other maps :
Explorer OL58
GPX file(s) :
Download GPX
of route
Harvey Maps currently don't offer coverage of the area surrounding Carn Ealasaid.

Always carry a decent compass.

Information on maps and GPX files is on this page.

Weather forecasts »

Alternative and nearby routes »

Carn Mor from Scalan

Starting and possibly finishing at different points, this linear route discovers some interesting past lives and histories while bagging a heather-clad Carn Mor, north-east of the Lecht Ski Centre.

Peaks : 1 Corbett

Ascent : 450m (1480ft)
Distance : 6km (4m)
Time : 2:15hr

Brown Cow Hill from Corgarff Castle

Fine estate tracks lead to a delightful hillwalk on wide crests above Corgarff with fine views to Ben Avon to the west and Morven to the east.

Peaks : 1 Corbett

Ascent : 600m (1970ft)
Distance : 19km (12m)
Time : 5:45hr

Morven hillwalking and race route

The shortest and direct route up Morven begins from near Logie Coldstone in Cromar and takes the form of a steep heathery trudge followed by a gentle hike over a wide crest. This route is also used for the ascent on the Morven Hill Race, with a detour for the descent.

Peaks : 1 Corbett

Ascent : 660m (2170ft)
Distance : 9km (6m)
Time : 3:20hr

Geal Charn from Dorback

Above the Braes of Abernethy, fine estate tracks lead from Dorback Lodge to the foot of Geal Charn, from where a delightful circular route makes for an enjoyable afternoon's walk or run.

Peaks : 1 Corbett

Ascent : 600m (1970ft)
Distance : 16km (10m)
Time : 5:45hr


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