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Report on Corserine & Carlins Cairn
26 February 2011

Gail, Irene, Mark and Michael

We travelled together and arrived at the carpark at Forrest Lodge at 10:30am. The sun was shining and it looked like we were in for a fine day?if only we knew what we would encounter later! We took photos of the Black Watch statue at the entrance to Forrest Lodge. This is where Fred Olsen the shipping magnate lives.

Off we went along forest tracks and as it was warm in the sun. The spring is nearly here and it made us look forward to the summer again. We reached the Polk Burn at the edge of the forest and negotiated going through a barbed wire fence with the help of Michael levering the barbed wire with a plank to prevent us getting caught in it. We headed south along the fence line and uphill to the ridge called North Gairy. We had lunch at a sheltered spot before heading up to Corserine.

On the way to Corserine the weather changed and it started snowing and the wind picked up. The snow turned to hail and with the driving wind it was coming at us horizontally like needles into our faces. By this time it was freezing cold and the hail continued to batter us. The visibility was so poor that we headed in the wrong direction and realised that we were at Polmaddy Gairy instead of heading to Carlin?s Cairn. Thank goodness for the GPS! So it was about turn and head in the right direction this time with not too much time lost. Eventually the hail stopped and it started snowing again but only for a short time but the cold wind kept up. We reached Carlin?s Cairn and sheltered in the cairn out of the wind for a wee break. Back to Corserine and just as we left the trip point the sun came out briefly and we got some views again.

We headed back along North Gairy and down to the fence line again, retracing our steps back to the car. It turned out a longer day than expected as it was nearly 6pm by the time we headed for home. A good day was had by all but it just shows how unpredictable the Scottish weather is as snow was not forecast.

Irene Cahill

Black Watch statue at Forrest Lodge
Feral goats and kids
North Gairy
Fenceline to North Gairy
Gail and Irene
Michael and Mark
Irene and Gail in the snow
Carlins Cairn
Weather closing in
Views at last
Mark having a rest
Gail hiding from the hail
Is this Mark
Mark in the sun

Photos: Irene Cahill and Mark Kinnon

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Mountaineering Council of Scotland
Scottish Youth Hostels Association

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