The Farar

The Fara circuit

Hillwalking route up The Fara from Dalwhinnie

Longer and much more enjoyable than a direct route up from Loch Ericht, a delightful circuit on estate tracks and grass covered slopes leads to The Fara's large summit cairn from where vast vistas can be savoured.

Route outline


The Fara

Ascent 550m (1800ft)
Distance 11km (7m)
Time 3:40hr
Start/finish Nr Dalwhinnie
Grid Ref : NN636858
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Starting from just outside of Dalwhinnie and following fine estate tracks of Loch Ericht Forest and the northern ridge of The Fara, a delightful and fairly short circular hillwalking route can be enjoyed while taking in vast vistas.

Route map

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Route description

1. Getting to start near Dalwhinnie

The Fara from near Dalwhinnie

The Fara from near Dalwhinnie

By car, Dalwhinnie is just off the A9, half way between Perth and Inverness. Alternatively arrive by train, all the way from Euston if you need !

Around 1km north of the centre of Dalwhinnie, the A889 swings northwards then follows the line of the old military road. Just beyond the bend in the road there is a large gate in a deer-fence where an estate track heads westwards - the route begins from here. There is limited verge parking by the gate.

2. The Fara

Looking south-west to Alder from the Fara's crest

Looking south-west to Alder from the Fara's crest

Leave the roadside, through a gate in a deer-fence and begin following an estate track heading west. Into some forestry, another gate is gone through, by which is a map outlining the walking trails in Chaochain Woods (but lack of detail makes it pretty useless). The track climbs gently and travels through forestfry for around 1km coming to a clearing and junction - keep right.

Another 1km further on, a quarry is passed, beyond which the track becomes rougher. Uphill and onwards, the track comes to its end by a gate in another deer-fence . Head through the gate, beyond which open hillside is climbed while aiming up the fall-line of the grass-covered slope ahead.

At around 700m, The Fara's summit crest is seen ahead with a sparodic line of old iron fence-posts marking a direct route. Higher up and as The Fara's summit is neared, a well preserved wall is met which leads to a very large cairn resting on the highest point of the crest.

Cairn and wall on The Fara's summit

Cairn and wall on The Fara's summit

In an isolated position, The Fara gives superb views from its summit !

Cairn and wall on The Fara's summit

Cairn and wall on The Fara's summit

3. Return

Looking back up to The Fara from Allt an't Sliuc Lodge

Looking back up to The Fara from Allt an't Sliuc Lodge

Now on The Fara's wide and delightful grass-covered crest, head north-north-east over pathless ground. Height is gradually lost as the crest steadily veers more north-eastwards.

Just below the 700m contour, the head of another estate-track is met (not marked on my OS Landranger map). Simply head down this track for just over 2km to cross the Allt an t-Sluic via a ford (this may be tricky in spate).

The track meets another just east of the Allt An't Sluic Lodge, which is followed back to the A889 , from where a short walk returns to the route start.

Route profile »

Maps and GPX downloads »

GPX file(s) :
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Always carry a decent compass.

Information on maps and GPX files is on this page.

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Alternative and nearby routes »

Ben Alder Forest Munros

One of the finest ways to reach Ben Alder is a cycle down Loch Ericht followed by a circular route from Culra Bothy. Lots to encounter - high plateaus, lochans, ridges, fantastic views - all while bagging 6 Munros !

Peaks : 6 Munros

Ascent : 2400m (7870ft)
Distance : 56km (35m)
Time : 11:5hr

West of Drumochter Munros

Bags of character and great views, this is a fine high-level route on which to quickly bag the 4 Munros west of the Pass of Drumochter, possibly adding in the Corbett peak of the Sow of Atholl for good measure.

Peaks : 4 Munros, 1 Corbett

Ascent : 1300m (4270ft)
Distance : 24km (15m)
Time : 8:10hr

East of Drumochter

Carn na Caim, A'Bhuidheanach Bheag and Meall Chuaich form a linear route on the eastern side of Drumochter Pass. Having a bike or other transport organised will save a long return route as the start and end points are around 11km apart.

Peaks : 3 Munros

Ascent : 1100m (3610ft)
Distance : 25km (16m)
Time : 8:10hr

Meall Chuaich from Dalwhinnie

Fine estate and hydro tracks are followed to a hidden bothy, from where a quick jog up and down bags Meall Chuaich, a fairly unassuming Munro.

Peaks : 1 Munro

Ascent : 650m (2130ft)
Distance : 14km (9m)
Time : 3:35hr


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