Day 2: Drake's Bothy to Bob Scott's Bothy - Cairngorms Loop
Mountain Biking Highlight
Katherine Moore planned a mountain bike ride.
December 18, 2019
The second day starts on the East Highland Way, starting the inner loop of the Cairngorms loop heading clockwise. It’s a shorter distance at 25 miles (40.5km) but don’t be fooled - there’s a big chunk of hike-a-bike today which will take some time. Head past the stunning Loch an Eilein and into Glenmore Forest, making sure to stop by Glenmore Visitor Centre after eight miles (14km). A road will lead you out of the forest before you start the big climb of the day from Ryovan Pass.
Heading into the Abernethy Nature Reserve, cross the River Nethy and start the singletrack ascent, with gradients up to 18 per cent! You won’t reach the summit of Brynack More, but you’ll certainly feel high up at 2600 feet (790 meters). Head South to pass between A’Choinneach and Creag Mhor, and before crossing the River Avon you’ll find a small emergency bothy hut - hopefully you won’t have to use it!
Continue South, now nestled between Beinn Mheadhoin and Beinn a’Chaorainn on the singletrack trail. At mile 20 (32 km) you’ll start the descent into the Cairngorms National Park, following the Derry Burn. Soon you’ll find a brilliant bothy not far off the trail which will give you shelter for the night, Bob Scott’s Bothy. Who knows, you might even make some new friends there!
December 22, 2019
Day 2 is an awful lot of of hike'a'bike up and back down the back side of Bynack More and from the Ford of Avon up to the Glen Derry decent. Just be well aware as its pretty much un-ridable. Really caught us out, spent most of the day hiking, had to split it into two days, took its toll and caused us to call off the outer loop for a future adventure. Could be recent erosion on the Bynack More decent, but the post ford of avon ascent was pure boulder field. Makes day 3 a welcome relief!
June 27, 2021