Meall a' Choire Lèith
The map shows the GPS track of this walk taken using my SPOT personal tracker
I climbed this hill on May 1st 2015. It was the third walk that my son-in-law Dave and myself did that week. We drove to the small parking area near the north end of Lochan na Lairige at about NN 594416.
I'd originally intended to climb this hill some years ago and walked from the Lawers Hotel over Beinn Ghlas to Meall Corranaich. On that occasion time was against me to go on to Meall a' Chore Leith so this was the simple target for this walk - a bit of unfinished business and a hill which I don't think I would have climbed without using a car. It would have been a lot of road walking to do purely on foot.
This distinctive cairn is just above the parking area
A hundred metres or so back along the road a clear track leads off uphill through the heather.
Looking south across Lochan na Lairige, with Ben Vorlich in the distance above the dam.
The path continues clearly for some distance before....
...reaching a less distinct path that heads in the direction of Meall Corranaich. We initially took this before realising that we were going in the wrong direction.
Backtracking we were soon heading in the correct direction. I used my GPS to head towards the water intake marked on the OS map at about NN601426.
In places the ground was a bit boggy but nowhere near as bad as mentioned in some accounts. There is a faint track in places. Our target Meall a' Choire Leith lies directly ahead.
We reached the Allt Gleann Dà-Eig just above the water intake for the Lawers HEP system and crossed the stream easily. However,....
....there are even easier places to cross the stream just below the intake dam so it might be better to cross there.
Beyond the intake there is a boggy track which heads towards the shoulder of Coire Gorm and, I think, is above a pipeline from another water intake at NN602433.
Looking down Gleann Dà-Eig
A faint track continues into Coire Gorm.
Having reached the unnamed stream coming down the corrie it appears that some walkers head straight up the hill but, as I prefer gentler slopes where possible, we opted for heading up by the burn...
...before climbing the slightly gentler slopes higher up the corrie.
Over to the south we had increasingly good views of Meall Corranaich, which still had a lot of snow on it.
We soon reached the main ridge coming down from Meall Corranaich with Ben Lawers now in view in the centre of the photo.
Looking back downhill the way we had come up from Gleann Dà-Eig.
Once we reached the ridge path we were treated to some stunning views over Coire Liath.
This panorama shows the Munros of Meall Garbh, An Stuc, Ben Lawers and, to the right of the ridge, Meall Corranaich .
Click on the photo to see a larger image.
The path uphill still had some remnants of snow....
...and further up we could see the large cornice on the steep east side of Meall a' Choire Lèith
The summit of Meall a' Choire Leith is a large grassy dome...
...with a small cairn (926m).
An Stuc and Ben Lawers are in the background. Needless to say I didn't go too close to the edge with that enormous cornice.
The walk from the road had taken exactly two and a half hours which included several breaks for snacks, photography and admiring the views.
The extensive summit plateau makes photography of distant hills difficult. Click on this image of the hills to the west and north to see the full size panorama.
To end the walk we simply returned the way we had come up.
A final photograph was taken above Loch na Lairig with the sun shining on the snow covered Munros of Ben Vorlich and Stuc a'Chroin