Hill: Sgurr Marcasaidh
Date: Saturday 26th December 2015
Company: Just myself
Distance: 10.6km, Ascent: 600m
Time: 3Hrs 15Mins
December has been a write-off as far as hillwalking is concerned. Whenever I have had a free day to go walking, the forecast has been awful and today was no different.
Despite the forecast I really needed to get out. I set off from home just
after 06:00 this morning in the direction of Inverness with the intention of
ascending one of several remaining sub2000ft Marilyns in the area.
As I approached Inverness, the weather was not inspiring. I was almost tempted to go to see Star Wars instead!
Beyond Inverness, I made my way towards Strathconon with a view to ascending Sgurr Marcasaidh.
The start of this walk was through a beautiful birch wood. Many of the birch trees were covered in lichen.
Start of track through birch wood:
Despite the forecast suggesting strong winds and rain, it remained dry throughout the walk. It was however very windy.
The road/track to Glenmarksie and beyond is very good.
Sgurr Marcasaidh from the birch wood:
Sgurr Marcasaidh from track beyond Glenmarksie:
It had been my intention to follow the excellent track as far as possible towards the hill. However, on seeing a small herd of deer following a deer track up the hill, I decided to follow them.
Onto a deer track:
The deer track was a bit wet in places but it followed an excellent line up the hill.
Following a deer track:
Looking back to Gleann Marcasaidh:
From some distance away, I could see a transmitter on Sgurr Marcasaidh. I
ended up passing within about 25m of it.
Transmitter on Sgurr Marcasaidh:
The snowline today was at 400m.
Looking down to Gleann Marcasaidh:
On seeing the summit, I made my way directly towards it.
Looking towards the summit of Sgurr Marcasaidh:
Approaching the summit of Sgurr Marcasaidh:
It was very cold and windy at the summit. I didn't hang around up there.
At the summit of Sgurr Marcasaidh:
While standing at the summit, I could see another hill in the distance that looked about the same height
as Sgurr Marcasaidh. I therefore got the map out to check. The hill in the
distance was Sgurrachd Ire, which is allegedly 8m lower than Sgurr Marcasaidh. Had the weather been better I would have ventured out to it. Today, I just wanted to get back down.
Looking towards Sgurrachd Ire from the summit of Sgurr Marcasaidh:
I followed my footprints in the snow back down the hill.
During the descent, I again saw a number of deer.
While walking back through the lovely birch wood, I also saw numerous long-tailed tits.
A lichen-clad birch tree at the birch wood:
It was great to get out on the hill today but I am hoping for less windy weather tomorrow.