In November last year we'd been out on Lochnagar, with the intention of continuing around the circuit above Loch Muick. This would have taken us over Carn a'Choire Bhoidheach, Carn an t'Saigairt Mor, Cairn Bannoch and Broad Cairn. However the wind on the day had other ideas and we bailed out after bagging Lochnagar.
So, we decided to head into the area again, this time from Auchallater near Braemar. A crisp March morning greeted us as we met in Braemar where some of the group had hired bikes from Braemar Mountain Sports. The hardier members of the group cycled the short distance south on the road, I took more bikes piggy-backed on the car. On bikes and up the excellent track following Callater Burn with a gentle-rising gradient - we were quickly up to lodge by Loch Callater. A lonely lodge it is, boarded up with green shutters ! No-one else around.
Behind the lodge a faint path can be seen heading uphill, not even marked by a cairn. We started up this, and it rapidly improved becoming obvious and easy to follow. At around 750m, we reached the snow line, with a line of fence-posts to trace uphill. Carn an t'Saigairt Mor's summit was a short distance higher up. Excellent views and intriguing with sections of plane-wreckage dotted about (the section of wing had been blown over again and now lies a few metres further north-west than last year).
Ice-axes were out for the descent off Carn an t'Saigairt Mor and kept to hand for the rest of the day on the higher ground. We left our rucksacks at the next col and headed up straight up Carn a'Choire Bhoidheach ! From the summit, a bit of puzzlement tested us as we tried to identify the surrounding hills.
An about-turn, we picked up our sacks and headed over Cairn Bannoch (several mountain hares and ptarmigan) and to Broad Cairn. Well chuffed, 4 Munros in the bag ! Great views too. We re-traced our snow-footprints to the foot of Carn an t'Saigairt Mor, picked up the path and returned to the lodge. On the bikes again for a fast blast downhill back to the roadside.
A great day ! More photos on Flickr !