Craigendarroch, Ballater, Scotland

Today we walked up Craigendarroch which means hill of oak (craig = hill or crag/rock, and darroch = oak). It’s a steep, rocky hill overlooking the village of Ballater. From the ground it doesn’t look very inviting because of the rocky cliffs and indeed the women behind the reception desk in our hotel tried to talk us out of it. “Too steep and icy”, they said. We decided they didn’t look like hill walkers and so we went anyway. It turned out to be pretty easy and not particularly treacherous at all. It also didn’t take very long – probably about a two-hour walk up and back. The views from the top are magnificent. I’m now wondering why we haven’t done it before. If you’re in the area then I highly recommend it.

There are nice views of Ballater on the way up. The village suffered terrible flooding at the end of 2015 and from up here it’s easy to see why. The whole area looks like a flood plain.

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Behold, the Eye of Cthulhu.

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Elizabeth has a thing about eating snow. We try to discourage it but children are so contrary.

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The Eye of Cthulhu eyeing the views.

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I’m flying. Just imagine my leg isn’t touching the ground.

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Elizabeth taught Ben how to do a pas de basque. She says he needs to work on it.

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Suddenly, a red squirrel jumped out of nowhere and attacked my face.

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Daniel took this next one of me and Ben.

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This one’s better.

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On the way down.

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