Carn Dearg from Sgor Gaibhre

Carn Dearg and Sgor Gaibhre

A bike-hike from Loch Eigheach up the hills above Corrour and Rannoch Forests

With the estate paths being upgraded, cycling to the foot of the Munros surrounding Loch Ossian is a joy. This route takes the most direct line to bag Carn Dearg and Sgor Gaibhre, with a detour to the Corbett of Meall na Meoig of Beinn Pharlagain.

Route outline


Carn Dearg, 

Sgor Gaibhre


Meall na Meoig

Walk ascent 920m (3010ft)
         distance 10km (6m)
         time 4:00hr
Bike ascent 350m (1140ft)
         distance 17km (11m)
         time 1:10hr
Start/finish Loch Eigheach, by Rannoch Station
Grid Ref : NN446578
easy hard
easy hard
easy hard
ok fab

Starting from near Rannoch Station, a fine estate track heads into the wilderness surrounding Loch Ossian. Approaching the highest point on the track, you'll come across the ruins of Old Corrour Estate, from where an enjoyable yomp over heather and grass leads up to the Munros of Carn Dearg and Sgor Gaibhre.

If Munro bagging, the easiest route is to about-turn. However, the Corbett peak of Meall na Meoig on Beinn Pharlagain is only 3km south of Sgor Gaibhre and with no paths on this hill, hiking over this makes for a tougher and more challenging route.

Route map

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Route description

1. Getting to Loch Eigheach

Loch Eigheach with Meall Buidhe beyond

West of Pitlochry, the B8019 follows the northern shore to Tummel Bridge, from where the B846 continues onto Kinloch Rannoch and eventually Rannoch Station.

Before reaching the end of the public road, Loch Eigheach is around 2km east of Rannoch Station. Access gates limit the amount of roadside car-parking here to around 4 vehicles .

2. Carn Dearg

Old Corrour Lodge and view to Leum Uilliem

On the north side of the road, by a right-of-way sign and through a gate, a track heads north-west under some pylons. Follow this track for around 3km to cross the Allt Eigheach via a bridge .

Now on the west bank of the river, pass a generator house sympathetically embedded into the hillside, then head around an area of forestry .

A junction in the track is reached - if you are cycling and with the intention to return over Meall na Meoig (see below), you'll need to leave your bike here.

Keeping on the main track (left), continue for a further 4km to reach the sad and intriguing ruins of Old Corrour Lodge , where Carn Dearg looms directly above to the north-east. If cycling, leave bikes here.

Looking up Carn Dearg from Old Corrour Lodge From the ruin, follow a faint trod aiming uphill on the north bank of the burn coming down from Carn Dearg. As the path gradually disappears into heather, ahead some green grassy areas can be seen breaking up the dark heather clad slopes - keep aiming for these breaks. The delightfully grass covered ground above the heather is reached, from where an easy hike leads to Carn Dearg's summit with its large, well formed cairn resting on the highest point.

Looking up Carn Dearg from Old Corrour Lodge

3. Sgor Gaibhre

Aiming to Sgor Gaibhre from Carn Dearg

From Carn Dearg's summit, pick up a faint and worn path initially heading east. The path quickly turns north-east and heads down Carn Dearg's broad north-eastern shoulder.

Further on, the path becomes more obvious as it cuts a route through heather to arrive at the bealach between Carn Dearg and Sgor Gaibhre. Called Mam Ban (meaning 'white pass'), this bealach is peaty and depending on recent weather, can be rather soggy in places.

From Mam Ban, easy progress continues along the path as it starts climbing gently uphill on Sgor Gaibhre's grass-covered western shoulder. Some impressive erratic boulders are met on the way. A small pile of stones marks the summit of Sgor Gaibhre .

4. Return to Corrour

Beginning a descent of Carn Dearg

If you've cycled to the ruins of Corrour Lodge, then about-turn, hike back up Carn Dearg and retrace your steps to drop back to the ruins of Old Corrour Lodge. After picking up your bike, enjoy a free-wheel for the most part back to Rannoch.

If you've walked in, then there is a fine option to aim south from Sgor Gaibhre over Meall na Meoig and Beinn Pharlagain on a circular route returning to the Allt Eigheach (see below).

5. Adding Meall na Meoig to the itinerary

A mist Meall na Meoig above the dam on the Allt Eigheach

The summit of Meall na Meoig, a Corbett, is an interesting spot just above two lochans and some 3 km south of Sgor Gaibhre. The terrain is between these summits is quite rough with occasional patches of boulderfield to tackle and there are no obvious paths to follow. Below Meall na Meoig, the pathless grass and heather clad slopes are pitted with peat-bog, although a track reaches a dam on the Allt Eigheach, some 2km south-west of the summit.

Including Meall na Meoig in an itinerary with Carn Dearg and Sgor Gaibhre would make for a delightful circuit above the Allt Eigheach, though would miss out on a cycle to Corrour Old Lodge.

To reach Meall na Meoig, cycle in from Loch Eigheach as detailed above, cross the bridge over the Allt Eigheach , around the forestry and reach the junction on the track . Turn right and head up a track heading northwards. The track hits a steeper section and briefly becomes quite rough before levelling out and travelling to a small dam on the Allt Eigheach (as a side note, the OS Landranger map currently doesn't show this track and neither the OS Landranger or OS Explorer maps show the dam). If you've cycled to this point, leave bikes here - a track does continue northwards of the dam on the west bank of the river, but it is rough and not really cyclable.

Crossing the Allt Eigheach below the dam is a doddle, then over grass and heather covered terrain aim north-east, making a bee-line for Meall na Meoig. There are no paths to follow, but ground is pleasant to cross and gradients are fairly gentle. Meall na Meoig's summit is quite flat where an erratic boulder and small cairn rest make for debate as to the highest point.

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Alternative and nearby routes »

Munros around Loch Ossian

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