Cairn Gorm & Ben Macdui Hike

Where: Cairn Gorm, by Aviemore in the Highlands of Scotland
Height: 4,084ft, 1,245m

The 4,084ft Cairn Gorm / Cairngorm is 10 miles southeast of Aviemore. This is one of the top skiing and hiking regions in Scotland. Of the 9 mountians over 4,000ft in Scotland, 5 are here. Ben Macdui here is the second highest mountain in Scotland at 4,294ft, 1,309m.

The highest mountain in Scotland is Ben Nevis by Fort William at 4.409ft, 1,345m. The other 3 mountains over 4,000ft are by Ben Nevis.

The car park here is 2,000ft above sea level, so getting up onto the mountains takes only about a 2,000ft hike. There is a small charge for the car park.

You can also take the mountain train up to the visitor centre at about 3,500ft, for great views if you are not fit enough to hike. You are not allowed to hike from the top visitor centre to the mountains though in summer, unless you hire a guide, you have to start hiking from the car park.

You can hike from the top station when the ski slopes are open. Crampons, ice axe or skis are needed in snow and ice conditions.

You should only venture out to the other mountains if you are an experienced hiker with the correct clothing, equipment and navigation skills. At over 4,000ft, these mountains are often covered in cloud, getting lost in this vast wilderness is not recommended.

Aviemore to CairnGorm Road Map - PH22 1RB

Cairn Gorm Car Park image

The Cairn Gorm Map below shows the hiking trails to many of the Mountains in this region. Make sure and take a compass, OS Map, and the correct hiking gear for the time of year. Let someone know, or leave a note visible in your car stating where you are going, and date/time you set out. That way, if you do not return, the rescue team can be sent out after you.

The green and yellow dots show the main hiking trails, just be careful not to follow the trail down into Coire an Lochan.

Photo Tour to Cairn Gorm

Photo Tour to Ben Macdui

Cairn Gorm Range OS Map

Cairngorm Mountain Page

Aviemore area Accommodation

Cairn Gorm Map image