Taking in 5 of Scotland's 10 highest mountains in one giant, beautiful day out.

Statistics

1

day +

2,724

m

2,532

m

32

max┬░

Difficulty

FATMAP difficulty grade

Severe

Description

Covering 31km and 2,700m ascent, this route takes in 5 out of the 10 highest mountains in the UK in one huge day.

From steep couloir skiing to wide open Coire carving, this skier's objective takes in the best of the magnificent Cairngorms National Park. Be advised, completing this remote route requires immense fitness, high level skiing ability, correct equipment/clothing, favourable weather & snow conditions, robust navigation, ski mountaineering skills and plentiful mountain experience.

In the spring, expect almost countless equipment transitions. The Cairngorm 4000ers route can be done clockwise, but this slightly longer anti-clockwise variation takes in some extra descents for the ambitious skier or snowboarder. Once on Braeriach, multiple descent options exist on its south face, which will vary wildly in different snow conditions.

This .gpx track descends the steep and challenging Central Buttress Gully and then ascends East Gully (axes and crampon necessary). Whilst skinning around An Garbh Coire to The Angel's Peak (1,258m) be sure to give healthy respect to the high cornice and cliff danger around Sphinx Ridge. The route then visits Angel's Peak and Cairn Toul before descending the east facing Coire an t-Sabhail.

This face can offer some excellent faster skiing and bigger turns, although it will often be peppered with rocks.

The streamline down to the Lairig Ghru tends to hold onto the snow, and can be a fun strip of snow late into the season. The river crossing adds some good laughs and very cold feet to the adventure, which will soon warm up on the exhausting ascent of Ben Macdui.

In poor visibility, navigating from Ben Macdui to Castlegate Gully can be very difficult in the relatively featureless environment. Thankfully, this awesome couloir has huge cathedral walls and is extremely atmospheric, offering improved visibility and intermittent views of Loch A'an in the distance.

If down-climbing the entrance to the couloir is necessary, take extreme caution on the loose rocks. After skiing Castlegate Gully, visit the beach at the west end of Loch A'an, and then take on the final ascent up to Cairngorm mountain via the waterfall path of Coire Raibeirt. Complete the route with a final descent down the Coronation wall (west side of Cairngorm) and down to the Coire Cas into the ski centre.

Ideally you will have left one car here which you can use to get back to where you started. A truly incredible day, yet extremely challenging day in the Scottish mountains and a rewarding achievement when completed.

A fantastic way for the ambitious ski mountaineer to witness the appeal of the Scottish landscapes.