Tuesday 22 May 2012

Driesh and Mayar from Glen Doll

Distance: 15km; Ascent: 980m; Sunny and dry with light winds; Solo

Now that the weather had drastically improved, I was itching to get out walking in the hills.  My parents kindly offered to look after Isabel for the day today and so at 10:30am this morning I found myself setting off walking from the Forestry Commission car park at the road head in Glen Doll.

The Kilbo Path was well signposted from the main forestry track and I was soon ascending up the wooded hillside on a good path; the ground around the path was festooned with wild flowers, which I struggled to identify.  It was already very warm in the sunshine and I was soon stopping for a drink of water!  The path now entered a welcome shady area where it was pleasantly cool amongst the trees.

Flower in Glendoll Forest
Upon reaching the edge of the forest I happened upon a large group of twenty or so walkers who had stopped for a break; I guessed that they must have been here for a while as they had left the car park some 20 minutes before me.  I continued on up the good path that traversed the side of the Shank of Drumfollow to reach the bealach between Mayar and Driesh.  I began to climb the initial slopes of Driesh, from where there were excellent views back down the corrie and over towards Mayar.  Soon afterwards I spotted my first mountain hare of the day.

Mayar from western slopes of Driesh
I continued on up on a reasonable path to reach the summit of Driesh (Munro, HuMP) at around 12:15pm, which was marked by a trig point surrounded by a windshelter cairn.  Here I had a well earned lunch whilst chatting to a guy from Blairgowrie who was out for a walk with his dog.  There were excellent views in all directions, especially towards the Lochnagar hills and eastwards to Mount Keen.

Summit of Driesh
Shank of Drumfollow in front of Glen Doll, with Lochnagar beyond
I took a slight detour on descent so that I could get better views into upper Glen Doll, but then rejoined my outward route, which I followed back down to the bealach.  There were good views over to the Shank of Drumfollow and down into the corrie.  As I ascended up the slopes on the far side of the bealach, I caught sight of my second mountain hare of the day.

Corrie of the Burn of Kilbo
Mountain Hare near the Kilbo Path
The clear path led onwards towards Mayar and I soon reached the path junction where the Kilbo path begins its descent down into Glen Prosen.  However my route lay eastwards over the easy high ground towards my second hill of the day: Mayar.  A few hundred metres before the summit I spotted a pair of ptarmigan flying low over the ridge.  After that I soon reached the summit of Mayar (Munro, HuMP), which was marked by a large cairn.  Hear I met a German walker who commented that the weather was somewhat better than he had experienced in Glen Coe the previous week!

Remains of signpost indicating junction of Kilbo Path
On summit of Mayar
After taking in the views I began my ascent to the north, but then I spotted a figure heading this way from the direction of Tom Buidhe.  It looked like they had a backpacking sack on, so it was a fair bet that there were highly likely to be a TGO challenger and as I got closer it turned out that it was John B.  We stopped and chatted for 20 minutes or so about his route, Sunday night in Lochcallater Lodge and trekking in the Pyrenees!

Upper Corrie Fee
After leaving John to continue with his ascent of Mayar, I began to drop down into Corrie Fee, which looked quite spectacular.  There were good views out over the corrie to the forest and the hills beyond.

Looking ESE out over Corrie Fee
I followed the good path as it meandered down past several impressive waterfalls and many wild flowers to reach the floor of the corrie.  From here the path followed a line of moraine across the corrie floor to reach the upper edge of the Glendoll Forest.

One of many waterfalls in Corrie Fee Path in Corrie Fee
Shortly after entering the woods, I crossed a burn to follow a broad footpath downhill to reach a forest road that I followed all the way back to the car park, arriving shortly before 4pm.  It had been an excellent day's hillwalking, with a further two Munros ticked too :)


  1. Looks really good, and all the better for a bit of decent weather! I know very little about Scotland as a walking destination, other than what I pick up from blogs, etc, but this has certainly piqued my interest!

  2. Great hills and well worth doing. Brings back some memories seeing that.