It was a misty start in Glasgow this morning, but as I drove up towards Crieff the fog lifted, and by the time I got to the dam at Loch Turret there were actually patches of blue visible in the sky.
I was heading for Ben Chonzie, a Munro at the far end of Loch Turret, which had a crown of white cloud as I started the walk along the edge of the loch.
The first few kilometres of the walk are on a gradually climbing track, across which are several fords where burns come tumbling down from the hills on their way to the loch below.
At the end of the loch where it’s fed by the Turret Burn are a fantastic series of lumps and bumps which almost look man-made but are in fact moraine deposits. Beyond them the cloud had lifted, offering a good view of Ben Chonzie‘s summit.
A bit further up the track, the view back along Loch Turret was magnificent.
As the track approaches Lochan Uaine at the end of Glen Turret it stops abruptly, and from there I had to make my way up a water-logged grassy slope towards the bottom of Ben Chonzie. The usual route is a steep climb up the headwall of the glen to the north-west, but I spotted a sheep track leading north-east around the rocky crags of Biorach a’ Mheannain and decided to follow that instead. It was here that I saw the first of many hare today.
I walked up through some interesting rock formations before scrambling my way up the eastern slope of Biorach a’ Mheannain, sending more hares scattering.
Looking north-east from Biorach a’ Mheannain you can see Auchnafree in Glen Almond.
And looking south-west I could see the summit of Ben Chonzie.
The path drops down briefly before climbing again up to Ben Chonzie‘s flat, wide summit.
The view down from here over Loch Turret is simply stunning and made all the effort worthwhile.
A stone shelter marks the true summit of Ben Chonzie.
There were even more hare here than on Biorach a’ Mheannain, many of them starting to turn white for the winter.
I was conscious of the fact the sun was starting to go down, so I made my way down off Ben Chonzie, returning down the steep headwall rather than via Biorach a’ Mheannain. After picking my way through the peaty bog above Lochan Uaine I was soon at the track again, and making my way back to the car.