Wednesday 20 July 2022

A Camp On The Moine Mhor And A Walk Up Sgor Gaoith

Camp on the Moine Mhor

A friend staying was interested in an overnight camp in the Cairngorms, something he’d never done before. Preferably not in sunshine as he preferred not to be in the sun for long periods. A forecast last week for a couple of cloudy days with perhaps a little rain, perhaps a little sunshine, and not too strong winds seemed ideal. 

Evening view over Strathspey

I decided on the Moine Mhor plateau for the camp. There’s a fair amount of ascent from Glen Feshie but the distance isn’t great and if the weather changes it’s not difficult to escape from. So, on a dull evening we headed up the path, admiring the scattered young trees spreading up the hillside and the summer flowers, including the first deep purple bell heather and some pale pink-purple orchids. Looking back the low sun was picking out the hill ridges running down to Strathspey.

Evening view from the tent

We made camp by the little Allt Sgairnich not far from its source on Carn Ban Mor. The evening was cloudy and cool, and we were soon in our tents, after a visit from two other walkers, one of whom I knew, who were camped not far away, though out of sight. I woke once during the night to find camp enveloped in dense fog. The breeze had dropped, and it was calm. The inside of the flysheet was wet with condensation. The temperature was just 5.5

Fog clearing

When I woke again we were still in the fog but the pale orb of the sun could be hazily seen through the clouds. A slow breakfast and a wander round camp and the clouds and mist were burning off. 

After the fog lifted

A large bull reindeer trotted past, a long way from the Reindeer Centre. A fine sight in this wild location.


The two other campers passed by, heading for Braeriach and Cairn Toul far across the Moine Mhor. We were less ambitious. Our aim was Sgor Gaoith, just over two kilometres away. 

View to the Moine Mhor from the ascent of Sgor Gaoith

To reach this little peak we followed the narrow path along the rim of Gleann Einich, which gives superb views down to Loch Einich and across to the massive bulk of Braeriach.  The summit of Sgor Gaoith came and went in the last of the low cloud but was clear when we arrived, joining some day walkers. 

Braeriach & Loch Einich from Sgor Gaoith

After lingering for snacks and views we took the wide main path to Carn Ban Mor then ambled back down the way we’d come up, this time admiring the brilliant multi-coloured mosses around the many seeps and springs.



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