Hill: Carn nam Bad
Date: Thursday 3rd April 2014
Company: Just myself
Distance: 11.3km, Ascent: 415m
Carn nam Bad has been my closest-to-home unclimbed Marilyn for some time. I have put off ascending this one during the construction of the Beauly to Denny pylon line. Having put off an ascent in 2011, 2012 and 2013, I decided today to ascend it regardless of any on-going Health & Safety signs at the start of the walk.
There is no parking at the start of the track. The nearest parking is circa 800m along the A831.
After walking the 800m along the A831, I climbed over the stile next to the gate guarding the start of the track.
Health & Safety signs at start of track:
Just beyond the gate there is a small site office. On passing the office, I was pleased to receive a friendly wave rather than an earbashing.
Track beyond gate:
Despite the Health & Safety signs, this section of the Beauly to Denny line is definitely complete with high-voltage electricity flowing through the wires above (loud buzzing).
During the walk, two works cars passed me with occupants giving a friendly wave. Access to this hill would appear to no longer be a problem.
During the ascent, I passed much devastation on the hill. Significant volumes of trees have been felled with the earth badly scarred below the pylons. As I made my way up the hill, I recalled Saruman in the Lord of the Rings destroying Fangorn forest (Entwood). I thought it a shame that there were no Ents to trash the pylons in revenge for destroying the trees. However, I was pleased to see some newly planted trees. Trees will grow back but the unsightly pylons will remain highly visible regardless.
During my route of ascent, I had to negotiate numerous trees that were strewn across the track.
Trees across track:
Track ascending through forest:
More trees across track:
After negotiating at least six trees lying across the track, I could progress no further owing to a really large tree lying on the track. After spending circa 10-15 minutes trying to get around the tree, without success, I took a short diversion by climbing over a six-foot deer fence to leave the track and the forest. I walked along the edge of the forest before rejoining the track several hundred metres beyond.
Diversion to bypass a fallen tree:
Much of the walking today was in clag. I took the next photo on getting a fleeting glimpse of the hill.
Looking towards Carn nam Bad:
On leaving the track, I made my way across rough ground and then underneath the line of pylons before reaching a fenceline which I followed to ascend the hill.
Point at which I left the track:
Looking back during ascent:
I visited three cairns on the hill. The SW top cairn, the summit cairn and then a small cairn a short distance beyond the summit.
Approaching the SW top:
Looking towards the summit from the SW top:
Summit of Carn nam Bad:
From the summit, I returned to the track via approximately the same route.
Loch Carn nam Badan:
However, on reaching the section of track with numerous felled trees, I took the main track descending directly back to the start.
I didn't particularly enjoy the ascent of this hill owing to a lack of views together with so much desolation.