Cruach Ardrain

Cruach Ardrain is a Munro that lies just north of Beinn Tulaichean in the southern highlands of Scotland. This is a recap of a day spent climbing Cruach Ardrain with stunning pictures!

Hey Folks! Today I’ve got these pictures of our recent hike up Cruach Ardrain for you.

You might want to first check out the pictures of Beinn Tulaichean from March. Cruach Ardrain is mentioned in that post. We just didn’t climb it that day.

So we went back and climbed Cruach Ardrain a couple of weekends ago and Beinn Tulaichean again too.

Check out these pictures to see just how different the landscape looks with the change of weather and scenery compared to March! 

Start of path leading to foot of hill climb to Cruach Ardrain.

How it looked in July.

Path to foot of Beinn Tulaichean and Cruach Ardrain seen in March with snow on the mountain tops.

How it looked in March.

Do you recognise the walk in above?

Compare the March picture to the July picture and you’ll see where we’re heading. We’re approaching the start of the Beinn Tulaichean climb.

Hasn’t the change of season and the weather made the scenery and landscape look totally different?

Glen at Cruach Ardrain.

Anyway. We weren’t going up Beinn Tulaichean. Well, not at first anyway.

We took a right turn just at the foot of that mountain.

Then went up a drovers track to get a little further up the glen.

Now unfortunately we could not see Cruach Ardrain at all. It was hidden by clouds in the centre top of the photograph above.

In fact it was hidden pretty much all day!

Burn at Inverlocharig.

As we walked past the farm at Inverlocharig it was time for a history lesson from Mike. (That’s the chap in the photographs below).

The importance of the site of Inverlocharig is it was the final home of the famous outlaw Rob Roy MacGregor.

Rob Roy MacGregor died here in 1736 and his grave is situated nearby at Balquhidder churchyard.

View up the drovers path up the glen at as we've just walked past the farm at Inverlocharig.

Anyway, I’ve spared you the full 20 minutes history lesson I got!

Actually, it’s pretty interesting and Mike’s pretty well clued up on that kind of stuff. His house is filled with book shelves on history of all sorts!

But, as I know you’re here mostly for the pictures of Cruach Ardrain, l’ll keep it short.

So back on the hike and we headed up that drovers path now, northwards……

Michael Beaton starting climb at food of Cruach Ardrain.

Further up the glen we left the path.

We took a sharp left turn to start the 1000m climb.

Bealach at foot of Cruach Ardrain leading through to Crianlarich.

The ground here was pretty wet and there was plenty of “bog hopping” fun to be had!

This view above is looking back down from our climb.

It is possible to carry on up the drover route and go through that bealach you can see and eventually end up in Crianlarich.

View looking South from the slopes of Cruach Ardrain.

We carried on going upwards on the slopes of Cruach Ardrain. The view above is looking South.

For this part it was heads down and onwards and upwards.

There was no path on this route we’ve chosen.

Also it was anything but easy with some pretty rocky parts that we needed to navigate through too.

Ridge that joins Beinn Tulaichean with Cruach Ardrain.

Finally we got to the ridge that joins Beinn Tulaichean (seen in the distance) with Cruach Ardrain.

It had been a right slog to get to here!

That expression on Mike’s face of sheer determination said it all.

Still we had probably burned a good 1000 calories at that stage.

Looking back at Beinn Tulaichean from the slopes of Cruach Ardrain with a view of the mountains of Stirling and the Trossachs in the distance.

Then we turned right and began the climb up the slopes of Cruach Ardrain.

The image above was looking back at Beinn Tulaichean.

Beyond is a stunning view of the mountains of Stirling and the Trossachs.

Looking up the path to Cruach Ardrain.

Looking up towards the summit we could see we were about to climb into the clouds.

There was also noticeable temperature drop at this point too.

That drop necessitated a quick change into fleeces and waterproof jackets to give us some extra added protection from the elements.

Summit of Cruach Ardrian to the right.

The the summit of Cruach Ardrian is there to the right in this picture above.

You can just about make out someone standing there beside the Cairn.

The cloud cover was lifting just a little for us to be able to see it.

Michael Beaton standing at the summit of Cruach Ardrain.

After about 2.5 hours we reached the summit of Cruach Ardrain.

Here above Mike stood at the summit cairn.

The height of Cruach Ardrain is 1046m.

Neil Lockier standing at the summit of Cruach Ardrain hands resting on the summit cairn.

After our summit “poses” we chose to exit quickly.

We both agreed that we were DEFINITELY NOT hanging around here on this summit for long. The cloud moisture was making it cold and wet.

It was definitely time to descend to warmer pastures!

View descending from the summit of Cruach Ardrain.

We found that quite soon though and back down from being in the clouds, the temperature quickly rose again and we were able to take off our fleece’s and waterproofs.

However this was only for a short while. The grey clouds you see above us were bursts of rain.

There wasn’t any point in complaining though. We’d been pretty lucky in that it hasn’t rained all day at all, up until now.

This was extremely lucky for me as I’d forgotten my waterproof trousers!

It could have been a pretty wet and uncomfortable climb for me, had it rained earlier.

View of the descent from Cruach Ardrain.

The view above might look familiar to you if you’ve already checked out the very first picture in the previous post of Beinn Tulaichean.

It was a pretty long descent. But we got back to the car for about 3.30pm. Not a bad round trip from having started at 10.30am.

The next hillwalking expedition is one that Lady Lynne and I will be away on together. A Lochnagar weekend!

We’re going up to stay at Rucksacks Bunkhouse in Braemar, where Mike and I were  in June.

This time, I’m thinking that Lady Lynne and I will go for Loch Nagar. It’s situated close to Balmoral, the Queens Scottish Highland residence. A very suitable place for Lynne to feel at home in 😉


  1. Susie @ Suzlyfe

    That first picture is everything. It honestly doesn’t even look real!
    And I got really excited because I thought you and Lady Lynne were GOING to Balmoral. And then I realized that I read that wrong. Sadface.


      Another place and piece of excellent scenery I would drag you and Alex up to see. 😉

      Ha ha ha! Believe me, if Lady Lynne and I could get into Balmoral, we would! I mean you can sometimes visit when the Queen is not in residence, but otherwise I’ll need to wait for my Knighthood. 😆

  2. Shashi at RunninSrilankan

    Neil, Cruach Ardrain and it’s foothills are GORGEOUS! Such lovely scenery – must make for a wonderful hike! Going over to your burger recipe to check out how yours and Lady Lynnes trip to Rucksacks Bunkhouse in Braemar turned out!


      This was an awesome hike. Albeit we were both shattered at the end because of the initial climb. But it certainly was worth it! 🙂

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