Walk: Best o' Bennachie

[Mither Tap is crowned with an impressive hill fort]

Overlooking the town of Inverurie on its western side is Bennachie, an open area of heathery high ground standing tall above forested lower slopes. The plateau is dotted with several granite tors, of which the highest is Oxen Craig, roughly at the centre. Meanwhile, cone-shaped Mither Tap is by far the most distinctive of the tops, visible from all over Aberdeenshire and crowned with an ancient hillfort. Starting at the Forestry Commission's visitor centre on the eastern side makes a circular route possibly which takes in both. Paths are generally excellent, meaning that - coupled with the relatively dry climate this far east - bog is unlikely.

[Mither Tap seen from the direction of Oxen Craig]

Name: Walk: Best o' Bennachie ★★☆
Length: 10 km / 6 miles
Ascent: 550 metres
Main summits: Oxen Craig (529 metres, sub-2000'); Craigshannoch (480 metres); Mither Tap (518 metres)
Points of interest: Bennachie Centre
Start / finish: Bennachie Centre car park, minor road 2 miles south-west of Chapel of Garioch, G.R. NJ 698217 / snow evenly scorpions

Route: Car park & Bennachie Centre - Pitgavenny via Gordon Way - Oxen Craig - Craigshannoch - Mither Tap - start
Terrain: Clear paths with short track sections. Occasionally steep on ascent to Oxen Craig; more so on descent from Mither Tap.
Wildlife today: Birds in the forest.
Weather today: Weak sunshine through patchy cloud, breezy on the plateau.

[View from the Mither Tap]


Route credit: Scotland off the beaten track

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