Mount Keen

Mount Keen. Of all of the Munros this one is the most easterly. It’s relatively easy to climb and is in the shape of a dome. We climbed this Munro on a stunning weekend as you can read below.

Hi Folks, how’s your week going? Me, well I’m so glad that my expectations for how this trip would turn out were far exceeded, and I can bring you this post.

Mount Keen had been on the cards for some time and we were just waiting for a good weather forecast.

Fortunately that happened last weekend and we were able to take full advantage as you can see below!

Mount Keen

Mount Keen is one of the easiest Munros in Scotland, and this trip was an excellent opportunity for Liam to do his 3rd Munro and Lynne her second.

For myself it was an opportunity to actually hope to see something, as my previous climb of this mountain had been an extremely wet and cold one.

And so, after having a brief stop to pick up some fresh coffees, we headed off from Dundee at 7am on the Saturday with the sun shining, with high hopes of a great day out for all. πŸ™‚

Start of Mount Keen path through some trees.

We arrived at the car park at Invermark at 8.30am which was already beginning to fill up.

It was funny that I’d moaned at Liam in our Driesh and Mayar hillwalking post that I didn’t get any of his scotch egg.

So this time Liam had muffins with him, ha ha, so we had a tasty treat start to the day, which we were soon to burn off.

The view above is looking back, just after leaving the car park and passing through some woodland to begin a 2 mile trek through Glen Esk before we start our climb.

All the rocks to the right are strewn about where there would have been buildings or some kind of settlement here at some time in history past.

Walking North into Glen Esk. Old rusting iron gate on the path.

Walking North now into Glen Esk, these old rusting iron gates probably date back to the 1800’s.

Back then Victorian Estate Landlords were very specific about what parts of land belonged to them.

It’s different now. The majority of Scotland has a countryside code allowing free access for all walkers as long as they are responsible and leave no traces of their passing.

Lynne and Liam pose here in the stunning early morning sunlight on route to Mount Keen.

Lynne and Liam posed here in the stunning early morning sunlight.

This first part was a the relatively easy flat part of the walk.

Yes, Lynne was the only sensible one to bring her sunglasses, which Liam and I regretted!

Queens Well, Mount Keen.

Before the main upward hawl, we arrived here at Queens Well.

This monument was errected over the well to commemorate a visit by Queen Victoria in 1861.

The well still flows, albeit the water is a little stagnant looking!

Glen Esk rounds the corner to the left in the distance.

Glen Esk rounds the corner to the left in the distance.

Here, we left the glen floor and began following landrover tracks.

Those tracks were probably built to carry victorian gentleman on shooting expeditions during the stag shooting season.

Landrover track to Mount keen winds upwards in the distance through the gaps in the hills.

The track begins to wind upwards in the distance through the gaps in the hills.

It was a slow hot slog on this path as it make its way slowly to the plateau.

Then at the plateau there would be a steeper climb to the summit of Mount Keen.

Mount Keen Glen Esk looking back

Above we are looking back down to the floor of Glen Esk

You can see we’ve covered a fair distance.

The building you can see is Glenmark Cottage which is available for hire for holidays.

Perfect if you’re looking for no modern conveniences. Like electricity!

Path heading upwards to Mount Keen.

I know that I’ve been really fortunate to post some good weather photographs of our hill walking times in Scotland.

But honestly, the last time I climbed Mount Keen I couldn’t see further than that large grey boulder coming up on the left!

This really was an amazing day weather wise!

Looking back down the Mount Keen path.

Looking back again you can see little dots on the track

Those dots are people.

It was beginning to get busier behind us as other people also had the same idea to make use of such a stunning day!

The plateau. Track to the summit of Mount Keen clearly visible.

Here, we’re reached the plateau and the track to the summit is now clearly visible.

Many of the original hill tracks in Scotland have become so worn that they have had to be repaired, especially the easier more popular climbs, like here.

This new, well made track, prevents people walking in the heather. Thus preventing the track becoming any wider and scaring the mountain further.

The track is built in such a way that it drains adequately in wet weather, so people don’t have to walk on the heather to avoid the puddles.

View from the summit of Mount Keen.

Here we. Finally at the top of Mount Keen!

It wasn’t bad timing at all, we actually summitted at 11.30. So it took just 3 hours to do the 5 miles was pretty good going!

And for this time of year, it was surprisingly warm, about 9 degrees C so there’s actually a slight heat haze showing in these photographs.

The large rocky mountains to the right in this photograph above are of another Munro, Lochnagar.

That one is situated very near to the Queen’s Β Highland Estate of Balmoral.

In the far distance in this photograph are the 2 Munro’s of Dreish and Mayer.

Over to the left in the far distance in this photograph are the 2 Munro’s of Dreish and Mayer that Liam and I did recently.

Still with a covering of snow.

Just like when we climbed them!

 Lynne and Liam at the top of Mount Keen.

After taking some photographs of the excellent views it was time for lunch as Lynne and Liam catch up here.

I have to say it’s not often you get a chance to sit at the top and actually enjoy your lunch, and a sit about, for as long as we did without getting cold!

It really was the most perfect of days. πŸ™‚

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed these pictures.

Check out our other hill walking pictures.

And stay tuned for more, later in the year, as we are hoping to plan a camping and walking trip up Scotland’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis!

8 Comments

  1. Jennifer F

    Wow, it looks like quite the hike and also not exactly what I pictured Scotland to look like . . .

    • neil@neilshealthymeals.com

      Thanks Jennifer, it was a long walk in, then we had to get up to the plateau, before the last part of the climb, so yeah it was quite a bit of exercise. πŸ™‚

  2. Erin@BeetsPerMinute

    Saturday was such a beautiful day for Scotland, wasn’t it? Actually, this whole week has been lovely! That place looks incredible. I am hoping to get a nice hike or hill walk in next weekend while I’m at my in-laws in Fort Augustus — any suggestions? Gorgeous pictures, as usual! πŸ™‚

    • neil@neilshealthymeals.com

      It was an amazing day last Saturday wasn’t it Erin? It doesn’t look like its going to be the same (so far with the forecast) for this weekend though. πŸ˜‰

      If I’m in the area around Fort Augustus then there’s the Mamores mountain range nearby, or of course if you’re feeling up to it (and have plenty of time) there’s always Ben Nevis? πŸ˜€

      Either way, it’s such a nice part of Scotland and one of my favourites with plenty of low level walks too! πŸ™‚

  3. Amanda @ .running with spoons.

    You’re giving me mountain envy! And also making me want to visit Scotland! It’s still pretty cold and snowy up in our mountains, but I can’t wait for the weather to warm up a little more so I can trade the snowboard for some hiking shoes and take in the sights. It’s a lot easier to appreciate the beauty when you’re not flying down a mountain at top speed πŸ˜†

    • neil@neilshealthymeals.com

      Ha ha, so glad I’m giving you mountain envy (in a good way πŸ™‚ ) Amanda, as that’s what you give me when I see all your pictures of your snowboarding and beautiful Canadian mountains!

      You would love Scotland, not so many places to snowboard I’m afraid, but plenty of trekking for those hiking shoes! πŸ˜€

  4. Susie @ SuzLyfe

    Wow. I love how totally unexpected this trip is with regards to the terrain and landscape. It is amazing how diverse and varied the world is, even within smaller areas. Like Big Island Hawaii. Simply incredible. And I love the stone structure.

    • neil@neilshealthymeals.com

      So true Susie! Scotland, to me, never seems to look the same. πŸ™‚

      When I go to hill walk somewhere I’ve been before, the different seasons, the weather, and the light, all culminate to make it look different even though it’s still the same place! That’s why I could never tire of walking these hills over and over again!

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