The absolutely, finally, and definitely last day of summer: a dauner on Bennachie

Last weekend, I had my first winter walk – snow on the Borders hills. But yesterday, summer temperatures returned to the north-east of Scotland.  I am lucky that I don’t have to work full-time so, although I had  earmarked this a work day, I decided that it was too good a day to spend it at a computer.

I was a bit late getting started so didn’t have time to go far.  The choice was either Clachnaben or Bennachie. For me, Clachnaben is a Christmas holiday walk (and I was there on the TGOC) so Bennachie it had to be.

I took my Paramo jacket and a fleece as it was November, but it was unnecessary. I started off carrying the jacket but by the time I got to the top, I was carrying both of them. I thought back to Lochnagar in July when I was absolutely freezing and wondered what our weather is coming to. Cold summer days have been normal as far back as I can remember but I can’t remember a late November day in Scotland as warm as this.

Bennachie is a fine wee hill, an easy walk that is the exemplar of the phrase that ‘size isn’t everything’. It has the remnants of an Iron Age fort on the top and once you get away from the main top (the Mither Tap), you don’t meet many people. I’ve written about it before so I’ll say no more but just include a few photos.

The rocks are the remnants of an Iron Age hill fort on the summit of Bennachie
The rocks are the remnants of an Iron Age hill fort on the summit of Bennachie

Aberdeenshire from the summit
Looking over Aberdeenshire from the summit of the Mither Tap. Only the long shadows indicate it’s November

Clachnaben and Mount Battock
Clachnaben and Mount Battock

The Mither Tap (on the right). A granite tor on the summit
The Mither Tap (on the right). A granite tor on the summit

On the summit of Oxen Craig
On the summit of Oxen Craig

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