Driesh and Mayar

Driesh and Mayar are 2 Munros located in the Cairngorms National Park. We climbed these on a stunning winters day in February 2015.

Today I’m bringing you some of the stunning winter views that Liam and I were lucky enough to see.

We climbed the two Scottish Munros (mountains in Scotland which have a height over 3,000 ft / 914.4 m), Driesh and Mayar on Saturday 21st February.

I was so happy that the weather was so good (albeit very cold) as it was Liam’s first Munro climb.

Generally when people go out on their first adventures into the Scottish mountains if the weathers been good the first time they’ll always remember that time. It’ll encourage them to do more in the future, despite all the bad weather they’ll face on future climbs.

So anyway, I hope you enjoy the below.

Driesh and Mayar

We started our day leaving Dundee just after 7am. I’m extremely grateful to Liam in finding a coffee shop soon after as I hadn’t had any since getting up that morning!

On arrival at the car park, situated at the head of Glen Doll, we started at about 8.30am walking on forest paths to get to Corrie Fee (above) which is a truly dramatic massive bowl scooped out by a glacier.

Both Dreish and Mayer are situated in the Cairngorms National Park and to get there Corrie Fee is where we start our climb.

Climbing Corrie Fee. View looking back.

Looking back to the tree line is where we started.

You can see the path just coming in on the right.

The ice was up to an inch thick on it so it payed to be extremely careful this morning!

View approaching the summit of Corrie Fee.

At this point, we’ve climbed about ¾ of the way up to the plateau.

It’s a pretty steep climb.

In some parts there is no recognisable path.

Approaching summit of Corrie Fee looking North.

The sun was so bright.

I think it was actually at this point Liam and I realised we should have brought our sunglasses or at least ski masks!

After all looking at the snow too long can result in snow blindness!

Waterfall at the top of Corrie Fee.

The waterfall pictured above is usually a raging waterfall.

Today though it’s reduced to only a slight run.

Mostly being completely frozen up.

Looking back from the summit of Corrie Fee.

The view back is absolutely stunning.

It took our breath away.

Although that was probably helped by the bitter cold too!

Liam standing at the summit of Corrie Fee.

In the photograph above Liam was standing at the summit of Corrie Fee.

At this point we’ve reached the plateau.

It was now time to begin our climb to the summit of our first Munro today, Mayar.

View of the sun rising in the South over the summit of Mayar.

I thought I’d chance taking a photograph of the sun coming over Mayar.

Whilst maing sure I wasn’t looking through the view finder.

After all I needed my eyesight to get me back down!

View looking North West to Loch Nagar.

Once you’ve reached the plateau there is a gentler slope to climb to Mayar.

Looking North West you can see all the way over to another Munro, Lochnagar.

Lochnagar is very near the Queens Highland home of Balmoral Castle.

Liam standing on the summit of Mayar.

Above Liam is standing on top of his first Munro, Mayar which is 928m.

It was at this point he realised it was a mistake to take off his gloves!

It took a good while before he was able to feel he had hands again!

But I’m pretty sure that Scotch Egg (the reason why he took off his gloves) was worth it.

Liam on the ascent to Driesh.

Above you can see the summit of Mayar in the background as we begin our climb to Driesh.

However, it’s not all uphill though.

In order to get up Dreish we had to go back down to the bealach at the head of Corrie Kilbo and then climb up to the summit.

View looking back on descent to Glen Doll via Shank of Drumfellow.

That diagonal line that you can see in the picture above is the path leading downwards from the bealach at the head of Corrie Kilbo to Glen Doll.

We saw it looking back over our shoulders climbing to the summit of Driesh.

Liam with Ice Axe on the ascent to Driesh.

Liam showing off his guitar skills.

With my ice axe…………… 😆

Neil Lockier at the top of Driesh holding on to the triangulation pillar.

Finally we reached the summit of Driesh, 947m, at about 1pm, which is pretty much on time.

I always like to try and summit around lunch time so that we’ve plenty of winter daylight to see us back down.

This is certainly no place for a lunch stop though.

The temperature is about -9 degrees C. The wind chill factor making it minus double digits degrees C!

View of the head of Corrie Kilbo.

We didn’t stay long up on Driesh and Mayar. It was too cold.

The summit of Driesh can be seen in the far distance.

By this point we had made our way back down to start our descent on the path downwards from the bealach at the head of Corrie Kilbo seen in the photograph above.

Whilst descending that path that we actually met some of our worst conditions of the day.

Icy deep snow at some points on 45 degree slopes which lead to a steep drop to the glen below.

We very carefully chose our descent using an ice axe and making a solid footing before proceeding.

Eventually we were glad to be at the bottom. That last part was fairly exhausting.

Then there was meandering walk down through the trees of a forestry plantation to the car park.

We arrived back at 3pm. Which wasn’t bad timing at all.

Liam Innes and Neil Lockier at the summit of Driesh.

Hope you enjoyed the photographs as much as we had such an amazing day.

We have begun talking about a possible ascent of Ben Nevis for summertime this year.

Maybe even camping in Glen Nevis (woohoo wine and tents involved) and taking the ladies with us!

Watch this space for that possible weekend away and more such antics in the hills and mountains of Scotland!

12 Comments

  1. Bri

    Stunning!

    • neil@neilshealthymeals.com

      Thanks Bri, we were really lucky with the amazing conditions. 🙂

  2. Amanda @ .running with spoons.

    Now those views are absolutely breathtaking! You know how much I love the mountains, so I’m always more than happy to see pictures of them from different parts of the world. And I’m also super impressed that you hiked up there when it was that chilly! I can snowboard in that kind of weather, but I’m a little more wary of hiking it.

    • neil@neilshealthymeals.com

      Thanks Amanda. Yep, we both definitely have a love for the mountains. And I’m always hungry to see more of your Canadian ones! 🙂

      It was cold and not a day for standing about too long, but when you get views and weather like what you can see I think you forgot just how cold it really was.

      Looking forward to bringing more photo’s in the near future to my blog as well as seeing more of yours! And maybe next year I’ll get skiing here again. Snowboarding is something I’ve never tried yet, but I would’t say no to it! 😀

  3. Erin@BeetsPerMinute

    I can’t wait to move over in two weeks! Even though I live in New Hampshire at the moment and we’ve got mountains all over, the terrain in Scotland is so unique and gorgeous. Great photos! 🙂

    • neil@neilshealthymeals.com

      Hey Erin 🙂 if you liked the look of these 2 “Munro” mountains there are another 280 to climb!

      Scotland’s just waiting for ya 😀

  4. lindsay

    that’s it, i’m coming to visit you next. Deal?

    • neil@neilshealthymeals.com

      Absolutely! Please bring all your recipes with you and I will be your mountain guide! 😀

  5. Arman @ thebigmansworld

    Mate, those look amazing. When you’re here, I’ll take you hiking…up the hill to an amazing Lebanese restaurant 😉

    • neil@neilshealthymeals.com

      Cheers Big Man, LOVE Lebanese food so I’m taking you up on this hike when I’m over! 🙂

  6. Susie @ SuzLyfe

    Just incredible. It has been so long since I have been hiking, but I used to really like it. The only hiking around here is to the grocery store and back. I haven’t hiked in cold climates, either–I have hiked in Hawaii, which was incredible!

    • neil@neilshealthymeals.com

      Thanks Susie, and there’s nothing wrong with hiking to the grocery store, especially if its for a few beers 😉

      I’d love to hike in Hawaii! I’ve hiked around Australia, Wilsons Prom now THAT was amazing, camping out under the stars too! 😀

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