2 - 3
FATMAP difficulty grade
This corbett is the high point of a multi-topped ridge that's good for a mid-length day, but the shorter walk described here focuses only on the main summit.
With a quick easy ascent and a scenic return along the wooded Pass of Ryvoan, it's a wee gem of a walk - and very family friendly. Behind the visitor centre is a woodland path signed for Meall a' Bhuachaille.
This climbs steadily through a conifer plantation, passing through a clear-felled area to reach open slopes above the treeline.
The path now ascends through a vague corrie to reach the crest of the hill just above the saddle that separates Meall a' Bhuachaille from Creagan Gorm.
Turn right to make the fairly short climb onto the summit dome of Meall a' Bhuachaille, where there's a large and unusual cairn-cum-circular-windbreak, and great views over Loch Morlich, the woods of Abernethy and the swelling bulk of Cairn Gorm.
In descent take the obvious path roughly east-northeast.
It's quite steep in places and the surface periodically switches from well-engineered stone steps to a heavily eroded mess, and back again.
As you descend the wooded Pass of Ryvoan opens out below, a beautiful sight that's best appreciated by doing this circuit clockwise, as described.
The MBA-maintained Ryvoan bothy is soon reached.
Glen More's resident reindeer can often be seen grazing around here.
Follow a track down into the wooded pass, a lovely spot with its steep craggy walls and gnarled old Scots pines.
Idyllic An lochan Uaine (the green lochan) deserves a mooch - a rough almost-path traverses the scree of the east shore.
At the southern end is a hideously ill-advised wooden viewing platform (why muck around with nature? It's not an improvement).
Just beyond the loch look out for a path branching right off the main track; it's marked with a blue post.
This is one of the best little woodland walks in the area, winding uphill through ancient native pines and juniper thickets, with glimpses out through the trees to Cairn Gorm.
You half expect to meet a hobbit around every twist in the trail.
Rather too soon the path turns into a forestry track, and natural woods are replaced by dingy commercial forestry.
The track now leads straight back to Glenmore. © Dan Bailey - UKHillwalking.com, Mar 2012