Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Hiking Lochnagar Munro in the Scottish Grampians

It's been quite the year of outdoor activities for me and Jess, we've hiked up Creag Meagaidh and wild camped at the banks of Loch Laggan, camped at Oban Live, Arisaig and spent 3 nights camping on the Island of Islay (blog post coming soon). So when our friends asked us to hike a Munro with them we were mega keen on adding another Scottish Mountain to our bag .

group hiking the Scottish mountains, Lochnagar Munro - Cal McTravel - www.calmctravels.com

Munro: Lochnagar
Area: Cairngorm National Park
Height = 3789feet or 1155meters
Facilities = Car park, Toilet, Wee Shop
Walk Highlands Link 

Being a 3-hour drive from Glasgow we planned an early 6am start, this, of course, did not happen and managed to get out of the door at 8, whoohoo go us. With the forecast not looking great we were starting to think we should plant the seed with our pals for an all-day session in the pub instead! Luckily for us the Scottish weather forecast is about as reliable as an old Alfa (car joke, I know I'm super funny) and turned out to be a pretty decent day.

Arriving to a full car park we luckily managed to find some space in the coach park up the top and parked almost half in a ditch but it was a space none the less. From here we booted up and headed off on the 7-hour hike into the clouds! Handy note, there's a toilet in the car park which is open from 6am -10pm.

If you follow the same route as we took, the hike to the peak is well marked and besides one little bit of scrambling up rocks was a decent path all the way. From the top Loch, you can see the peak and will take you around 1.5 hours from here to reach it. The idea of lunch at the top kept us going at this point so we soldiered on for food.

Loch at the top of Lochnagar Munro - Cal McTravel - www.calmctravels.com
Loch at the top of Lochnagar Munro - Cal McTravel - www.calmctravels.com
Loch at the top of Lochnagar Munro - Cal McTravel - www.calmctravels.com

Nearing the peak things got pretty wild and felt like we were back in winter, luckily the rock formation at the top offers some much-needed shelter from the hurricane Arctic winds. The view from here was incredible and a top spot for lunch.

incredible view for lunch at the top of Loch at the top of Lochnagar Munro - Cal McTravel - www.calmctravels.com
staying at the peak of Loch at the top of Lochnagar Munro - Cal McTravel - www.calmctravels.com
monument at the top of Loch at the top of Lochnagar Munro - Cal McTravel - www.calmctravels.com

It's at this point when you've seen the view, had your lunch and accomplished the peak that you realise your 4000 feet up and 4 dam hours from your car. With no slide or zip-line to the bottom we dragged ourselves down the hill step by step, encouraged by the idea of celebration drinks in Aberdeen.

the long road home at Loch at the top of Lochnagar Munro - Cal McTravel - www.calmctravels.com

I was promised a cool waterfall on this hike and after asking the whole way, where's is it? Is it down there or over there? We finally stumbled upon it and it was pretty dam cool!

waterfall from the Loch at the top of Lochnagar Munro - Cal McTravel - www.calmctravels.com
cracking waterfall Loch at the top of Lochnagar Munro - Cal McTravel - www.calmctravels.com
 Lochnagar Munro - Cal McTravel - www.calmctravels.com

Just when you think you have reached the home straight at Loch Muick reality comes crashing down when your still walking along the edge of the loch after an hour! Ahh when will this walk end, I need beer!

Well you will be happy to know that after the end of the Loch we found the car park and all made it to Aberdeen, where we proceeded to drink far too much, stay out till 3AM and all woke up with horrific hangovers, sign of a good night?

Lochnagar Munro - Cal McTravel - www.calmctravels.com

Big thanks to Matthew and Nikita for the invite to Aberdeen for this little trip, it was awesome!

Lochnagar is a pretty easy hike, it takes quite a while but with an excellent path and facilities at the bottom it's a great starter Munro (just remember to take a wind breaker jacket).


Liked this? why not read our other Munro Hike up to  Creag Meagaidh at the start of the Summer


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