Map #385 has two sides. The other main approach to Ben Alder - though it lacks the drama of the Leachas ridges - is … If you are doing it as a there and back again stop just before the burn when you can see the kissing gate into the dodgy section. If you are determined to push through then be warned the next two hundred metres are tricky. Its then a case of fighting your way up the bank on any likely looking line. You've either got to do the above, do the equally hard Ben Alder tour or include it in one of two epic circuits (more later!) At one point there is a highly dubious looking suspension bridge which takes you over the Allt Chaoil Rheide (more of this river later), (2020 Edit - there was a sign near Culra indicating this bridge was 'Out of Order'. Follow the above route but instead of descending to the river to cross, keep along the excellent path. In front of you is one of many Scottish geological marvels - a wide strath at 400m altitude running pretty much bang on 90 degrees to the main Glen Garry / Drumochter Strath. The track rolls out to the road and then you turn left and head east to the start of the track described in the previous section. We rode out of Corrour estate and along Lochan Earba, the Ben Alder hills to our right. The track shown on the map that runs along the south shore of the Loch actually goes into it on several occasions. Instead, go downstream a bit and look for the track on the far bank, not shown on the map. This is pleasantly rough after the main access track but still level and easy to the YH. This may seem a bit of an embuggerance but actually it follows a great bit of single track. Rannoch Station is connected by road to Kinloch Rannoch. Ben Alder Weather (Days 0-3): The weather forecast for Ben Alder is: A light covering of new snow mostly falling on Wed afternoonFreeze-thaw conditions (max 2°C on Wed afternoon, min -6°C on Tue morning)Wind will be generally light. Over small bridge, 300m Camusericht Lodge is on your right up a short drive. Stage 16, Tuesday 25 May 2010: Rannoch to Ben Alder Cottage, 12 miles (10 on route) My long-time walking partner Dave Travers journeyed up to Rannoch … You are now in the middle of the area and able to contemplate all of the views around you. Cairn 15m E at NN 49633 71847 may be as high 01540 670000. 2014 had been dry all the way through Autumn so this day it was fine. OS50: 042 (Glen Garry & Loch Rannoch) OS25: 050 (Ben Alder, Loch Ericht & Loch Laggan) OS25: 385E (Rannoch Moor & Ben Alder) OS25: 393 (Ben Alder, Loch Ericht & Loch Laggan) Notes & comments. You then pop out on a big track which is an easy pedal to a bridge over a small burn. The hot tip is to stick to the middle as although this looks the worst, there is a firm base under the gloop whereas either side its bottomless. Not all of this is a walk, especially if your on a fat bike, so its worth it if things are reasonably dry. Ben Alder Estate Dalwhinnie Inverness-shire PH19 1AE. Many parts of the WLA are of high scenic valueiii, recognised by being within the Ben Nevis and Glen Coe National Scenic Area (NSA), the northern edge of the Loch Rannoch and Glen Lyon NSA, the Ben Alder, Laggan and Glen Banchor Special Landscape Area (SLA), and overlapping with the Cairngorms National Park in the far east. Best of all, waterbars (those lines of rocks across the trail to divert surface water) are few and far between, a sure sign of a designer who knew their shit. If you look at a large scale OS road map of Northern Scotland your eye maybe drawn to a large area of wilderness bounded by the A9, A86, A82 A85 and A827 with only a couple of C roads and the B road alongside Loch Rannoch intruding into the southern area. Most of the rest, by accident or the design of a mountain biking upland path designer, have enough of a kick from the rocks either side of the gap to enable an easy jump over them. I'd trudged along there when you rescued me near Corrour.The only one you haven't mentioned is the one to the NW of Loch Pattack, might be the only option if the dodgy bridge goes and the river is high.What's the track like on the south shore of Loch Ericht? Below 500m we did. Other than that its a peach. The area is rich in natural and cultural history on top of the rather gorgeous scenery and offers a lifetime of exploration! Take either of two left turns to take you all the way up Strath Ossian to Corrour Shooting Lodge (this is all obvious on the map). It can be climbed either from either Corrour or Rannoch stations on the West Highland line. Look to your right (i.e west) and you should see the West Highland rail line crossing the desolation of Rannoch moor. Looking north east through the strath carrying Lochan Earba. It will also help me remember where I've been over the years! Above was the most snow recorded in a generation but only a skier or mountaineer would have realised this. Abandon ones conveyance at a small layby 100m east of the Rannoch power station. The plan had been to ride over Bealach Leamhain to Loch Pattack, then out to Dalwhinnie, thence to Newtonmore by NCN 7. the trail was a good one. There is a wee patch of woodland alongside the second of the lochs which is a good stopping point. One last climb followed by a gentle descent back to Loch Rannoch overlooked by Schiehallion. Its shown on OS maps as a single track and used to be hard going in all but the driest of weather but was upgraded in 2016/17 as part of one of many micro hydro schemes that the estate has implemented hereabouts. I've done it on a fat bike and its fine so relax and enjoy the views ready for the next great trail. Ben Alder is one of the great remote mountains of Scotland, set in the very heart of the Central Highlands. On the climb into Strath Ossian, looking east. Technically its harder this way but all good stuff and there are no significant challenges. Nice one Phil! This is one of several that the estate did up in about 1999, entirely at their own expense. Also remember to smirk at all the suckers driving on the A9..... At Dalnaspidal lodge turn right down a double track to Loch Garry. They are short though. I bivvied here in 2018 doing this circuit as an overnighter. If I'm going to carry my bike up to 840m I want to have a view off the top. The magnificent Ben Alder Estate is located in the heart of the Scottish Highlands. As the slope you are crossing steepens things get more interesting but its all rideable with a modest amount of technical skill. The Autumn colours were in full bloom - stunning. Its an absolute cracker of a circuit and best of all, you pass almost no civilisation (barring the odd remote house) on the whole route. Near the end of the marked path looking back the way you've come, This path is a bit rough at first but has been extensively upgraded after only a k. Follow this until it joins the Lochan Earba track and return to Dalwhinnie as per above (or back over the Bealach Leamhain if you want more fun!). Walking here is not like walking on a city road. It was being signed as a Diversion during the Pattack hydro scheme works but no-one was using it. Rannoch Moor and Ben Alder (OS Explorer Map Series): Loch Rannoch by Ordnance Surve A1 edition (2007) Lochan Earba is to the right of the small hill just off centre. First up is the path shown on the OS that goes up the Allt Cam. Camusericht Lodge is situated in an elevated and private position off the main road, with southerly views over Loch Rannoch and beyond to Glen Lyon. I wasn't able to check it out so be-warned, you may have to go via Culra for this route) The worst bit of the track is just after this, thereafter it climbs away from the loch and over to the Allt Cam. From Dalnaspidal I left the A9 behind and headed south by Loch Garrry in the late afternoon sun. Get on this as its the best route to the bridge. The following morning the rain had gone and the sun was looking like making an appearance. Don't quite reach the road but turn left back on yourself on the smooth motorway standard track which takes you into the forest. So its now an easy surface which (yes) you. Camusericht Lodge is situated in an elevated and private position off the main road, with southerly views over Loch Rannoch and beyond to Glen Lyon. The descent down Coire Pitridh is a corker on a good stony trail. However doing it as a there and back again would be an excellent use of about 3 - 4 hours or so. The beach looked tempting but I had a quicksand incident here previously so stayed clear..... From Ben Alder Cottage you start on 10 miles of divine single track. This small village makes for a good starting point as its easy to drive to and can be reached by train. With Scotland’s 10th largest loch, Loch Ericht, five Munros and some of Scotland’s most pristine scenery, Ben Alder Estate’s luxury lodges are an ideal setting for truly memorable holidays. Overlooking the 20-mile long narrow stretch of Loch Ericht in the Scottish Highlands, it enjoys a remoteness today which makes it a Ben Alder is actually one of the most isolated peaks in all Scotland being miles from the nearest road. Approaching Loch Ossian, with the huge bulk of Ben Alder in the distance: At the back of the Lodge take the path (NN413697) along the Uisge Labhair. Down we raced to Loch Rannoch then at Bridge of Ericht we cheated and took the hydro road up to Loch Ericht. At the end of the loch just opposite the YH turn left on a new (in 2017) track which climbs back eastwards away from the loch. Blair Trekking Centre Set in the grounds of Atholl Castle. Read honest and unbiased product reviews from our users. I first did this trail as part of a lengthy tour which actually included the Western Isles. More luxury accommodation - Duinish bothy. The route starts out easy - down Loch Ericht over and across to Culra, over the Bealach Dubh / Cumhain to Ben Alder Cottage. The main path keeps climbing until it passes below a crag at its high point of just over 750m. Ben Alder Cottage - one of Scotlands top bothies. Looking north east along Loch Ericht, Ben Alder with its head in the clouds. In other words follow the now familiar (and as used in the Highland Trail) track up and over to Loch Ericht, bog hop to Ben Alder Cottage, over the pass to Culra and then back out to Dalwhinnie. So your next move is to reverse this. After the deer fence on the left stops is the boggiest bit. We've done most of those tracks and circuits, just the Loch Ericht shoreline and the Allt Cam tracks to get the full set. You can miss this bit out by way of the single track to Culra Bothy and the track back from this. the reverse of the first route described in this post) and then down along the lochs to their end. If the above looks a bit drastic but you want to explore the area, then just ride up the various bits of double track and back again. Follow your nose here as there is an argocat track to the left of the marked line which can be very wet. If you look at an OS 1:50k map of the area you'll figure it all out easy enough. I had to cash in on the unseasonably good weather so decided to head for my latest playground - the Ben Alder area. On a good day the views towards the mountains of Glen Coe and the Black Mount to the west, Schiehallion in the east, Ben Alder Forest in the north and Rannoch Forest in the south are breathtaking. Avoid the track heading up the hill heading for the Munros as you really want the one down by the river. Newtonmore Riding Centre Riding, trekking and instruction available. And then there’s Ben Alder Cottage, the haunted one. In clear weather the views to Ben Alder and Loch Rannoch are worth every pedal stroke. I'll not bother describing them as the above covers all of the bits and a GPX of the HT550 is freely available. I did this in October '15 starting at Rannoch and it was dryer than when I did it on the above mentioned tour in the August. It was in that it didn't involve waist deep river crossings but it was hard going. And looking back the way you've just come. Away from winter (which runs from October to May!) Ben Alder and Glen Garry As a starter for ten herewith is the basic description of a 50 miler start-able from either Dalwhinnie or the west end of Loch Rannoch..... Do this clockwise and ideally start at Rannoch but it works fine from Dalwhinnie. This was one of those fat bike 'moments' as a normal bike would have been hopelessly bogged down through this stuff whereas the fatty rolled through the lot. The approach to the Bothy, Ben Alder Cottage involved a 14km cycle ride, from the lonely Loch Rannoch, then a few KMs hiking across a bog. Carie lies around 3.5 miles west of Kinloch Rannoch on the south side of Loch Rannoch. Then comes the exciting bit. You ride down by Loch Ericht on a motorway standard track, up past the posh lodge and over a low moor to Loch Pattack. Today it was pretty easy. Head up on the Loch Pattack track and look for a left turn (signed to Loch Ericht) about 100 metres past the lodge. Its a bit run down being none MBA but makes for a good bivvy spot if you are doing this circuit in two days. So that's all for lecturing, onto the riding! Yet another blog about someones biking adventures. It should still be possible, but so far has defeated me! Note that its not a hugely popular walking route as most munro baggers go up the direct route to Ben Alder. Another good there and back again ride is the trail alongside Loch Ericht beyond Ben Alder Lodge. Covering some 68000 acres stretching from Loch Rannoch to Dalwhinnie. Carry on to Loch Ericht and along the west shore. Keep on until you join the main river Pattack track and head south up by the river. If you want food there is a good cafe at Rannoch Station as well as a Hotel. Ben Alder Circuit from Loch Rannoch I had to cash in on the unseasonably good weather so decided to head for my latest playground - the Ben Alder area. AbeBooks.com: Rannoch Moor and Ben Alder: Loch Rannoch (Explorer Maps) (9780319133620) by Ordnance Survey and a great selection of similar New, Used and … Approaches are long from any direction; Corrour Station gives the nearest access from the west, whilst it is possible to approach from Loch Rannoch in the south. 01796 481568 This used to be rideable (I rode it on this day blind) but Storm Desmond in 2016 wrecked it. Keep right for maximum chance of dry feet. This is one of the biggest areas of wilderness in the British Isles and only loses out to the Cairngorms due to it being bisected by the West Highland Rail line and a few remote lodges. The last 2k as shown on the map is a lot rougher and not really worth it unless you want to push right through the missing bit to link up with a track that takes you round to the Lochan Earba track. Covering some 68000 acres stretching from Loch Rannoch to Dalwhinnie. The trick here is to ignore this as the old path it leads too is no longer used. The descent to Culra Bothy seemed to go on for ever. Keep straight on what is now a nice made single track. Watch your nav through the missing bit, I followed my nose from the end of the marked path and this seems to be where most people are going as when you join a wee side burn there is a path of sorts. This post is meant as a guide to this area by way of describing some of the rides I've done there in the last few years. Rannoch has excellent confirmation and is ¾ sister to Laggan and Ben Alder, who have both been very successful in the showring. Thereafter is a similarly steady but long descent down to the Allt Eigheach. 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