Another day where MWIS and MetOffice mountain forecasts was vastly different. And another day where the MetOffice were spot on. Come back Geoff Monk, you were vastly better than the current forecaster. And another thing.... I parked in a nice big layby for this walk because of signs at the entrance that said 'no parking, large vehicles/etc'. So what did I find when I got back down. Yup, parked all over the scenery including right on top of the entrance. Pretty arrogant I thought.
So the day started bright. Having parked in the big layby a couple of hundred metres up the road I wandered down to the track and into the horse field. They must have waiting for breakfast as half-a dozen horses were huddled around the feeder in the middle. Aroma of sweet smelling grasses from the summer floated on the breeze. The track into Glen Baddoch was an easy stroll. Who knew it was here, hidden away from the A93 road by the long north ridge of The Cairnwell group of munros. A lone cottage closed up for the winter hinted at an estate house.
It was a fair walk before the ford which I crossed easily with dry feet. And then the climb began. Through mainly heather I plodded, not really hurrying. Looking over to the Cairnwell the forecast cloud was rolling in. It would reach me before I got to the summit no matter how much effort I put in. So onwards and upwards. There's a fine, tall cairn on Socach Mor, but across a boggy plateau lies the summit ridge with a steep rough slope with a rocky band to get on to it. As I reached the summit ridge the cloud came in. Wisps in the wind at first. Then colder, windier and then it was upon me. Along the rocky top the wind was evil, a good 30 to 40mph threatening to knock me off balance. With a clagged in summit I didn't feel like staying long.
Horses near Baddoch with Coire Chrid beyond
Entrance to Glen Baddoch
Heading for Socach Mor
Cairn on Socach Mor and summit ridge of An Socach
The Cairnwell in the distance
Looking back down to Glen Baddoch
Cloud on An Socach summit ridge
Ben Bhreac and Beinn a' Bhuird across Glen Ey