|Culra bothy with Ben Alder beyond|
I’ve been wanting to get into Culra for quite some time so when a couple of friends announced that they were heading in for the weekend I decided to join them for a night and have a day on the hill. I left home after dinner and arrived about 2130 just as the light was fading. For such a remote location it is incredibly accessible – the 15 km cycle to the bothy from Dalwhinnie took me a mere 1’23”; I took it pretty easy because I had my dog with me and there is a fine line between giving him a good run and animal cruelty. Without a dog I reckon it could be done comfortably in an hour.
Culra is one of the few bothies that is genuinely useful as a base from which to hillwalk or climb. Consequently it has a reputation for being crowded, despite having three separate sections. I had planned to kip in my new tent in an effort to drive the per night cost below that of a Hilton hotel but a light drizzle dissuaded me from leaving the warmth of the bothy. The bothy was quiet on Friday night, with only our party and a couple of guys camping by the river.
All in all it was a fine weekend and one that has inspired me to pay a few more visits to this part of the Highlands.