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Cairn Toul

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Cairn Toul is a challenging hike and the most shapely of the Highland Munros in Scotland. Walkers usually need to stay overnight to complete a climb of this peak and therefore camping gear and food will need to be carried up the mountain.

Cairn Toul

The walk to Cairn Toul across the Braeriach Traverse crosses a massive plateau and takes in some of the most magnificent views across the corries in the Cairngorms. Although the route can be approached from the Lin of Dee it can also be started form the Chlamain gap near the Sugar Bowl Car Park. The latter route is possible to do in a single day and back if you a re extremely fit. This is a hard route due to the length and lack of escape route and although the terrain is mostly rocky tundra there are huge cliffs on each side exposing walkers to bad weather.  

Starting from the Sugar Bowl Car Park the route towards the Alt Moor and onwards to the Chlamain Gap is the most popular. There is a scramble over boulders to the cleft of the Lairiq Ghru, Scotland’s most famous hill pass. At the top of the pass the summits of Devil’s Pint and cairn Toul can be seen before you descend to the Dee Pool which feeds water to Aberdeen. Four kilometres from the pools the Clach nan Taillear is reached, named after a group of tailors who tried to cross this area in a blizzard and died. After another kilometer a right turn brings walkers to Corrour Bothy which is a shelter for a night stay if this is the plan.

From the Bothy the path leading to Allt a 'Choire Odhair will take walkers to Devils Point, and from there a further climb to the summit ridge and the peak of Cairn Toul, the fourth highest in Britain. A walk along the ridge traverse brings walkers to Angels Peak or Sgor an Lochain Uaine. From here descend across a wide plateau to Braeriach, with the great Coire Bhrochain which is hazardous in bad weather.

The views here are magnificent across the Cairngorms and to Ben Macdui. Descending further you will come to Lairiq Ghru where the path can be followed back to Sugar Bowl Car Park.


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