Festive Break in Aviemore.
14 Members enjoyed a Festive Break in and around Aviemore, 27th-29th December, and stayed in a variety of accommodation outlets in the village for the two nights.
Some members chose to tackle a short walk on-route to Aviemore on 27th, starting in Kingussie, and although the walk was only 6km in length and little more than 250m of ascent, this gave a fine start to the Festive Break. The walk gave magnificent views from the summit of Creag Bheag (487m) overlooking Kingussie to the East and Newtonmore to the South along Glen Truim. The route followed the Alt Mor up stream as it twisted and turned it's way through a narrow cut gorge and then crossed over at the top of Kingussie Golf course to Loch Gynack. Continuing along the South shore of the loch through mature birch woodland the path eventually came out on to the open hillside and a steep little climb to the Summit of Creag Bheag. Breaks in the cloud and bright shafts of sunlight gave magnificent views along the length of the A9 as it passes through Glen Truim and as far as the Drumochtar Hills, the Glen Feshie Hills and the Monadhliath Mountains. The descent route followed a well formed path from the summit over the open hillside and down through mature woodland, ending up back in Kingussie.
On the 28th most members travelled up to the Ski Centre carpark at Coire Chais and headed into Coire an t-Sneachda or Coire an Lochain. Some members remained at low level and returned from the Corries to the starting point, whilst others climbed to the summit of Cairn Lochain and a traverse of the Northern Corries before descending the Fiacaill a' Choire Chais ridge back to the starting point. Cloud level varied around the height of the local summits and gave some fine, but intermittent views of the corries and surrounding hills. There were only patches of snow and with a little diversion, these could be bypassed, thus avoiding the need to "Gear up" with Crampons, and the Ice axes remained firmly attached to rucksacks. With the absence of snow and the current situation with the Funicular railway, the hills were much quieter than would normally be expected at this time of year and will require a big change in conditions to satisfy the Winter sports enthusiasts.
On the evening of 28th, the Group re-assembled for Dinner in the "The Old Bridge Inn" where once again a fine meal was served and tales of the day regaled. Members then travelled home on the 29th. Some who had missed out on the earlier walk of the 27th chose to stop off in Kingussie on the homeward journey and complete this as a short detour while others opted for a longer walk and tackled the nearby Corbett in Glenmore, Meall a' Bhuachaille, before heading home or traveling on to other destinations.
Thanks to Martin for organising the 2018 event and to Elizabeth and Terry for volunteering to organise the 2019 "Twixt Meet". (details to follow).
Attached Image from the summit of Creag Bheag, taken on the 27th, looking East over Kingussie.