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Ben Macdui


(Beinn MacDuibh, Ben Macdhui)

A historical perspective, drawn from the Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland: A Survey of Scottish Topography, Statistical, Biographical and Historical, edited by Francis H. Groome and originally published in parts by Thomas C. Jack, Grange Publishing Works, Edinburgh between 1882 and 1885.

This edition is copyright © The Editors of the Gazetteer for Scotland, 2002-2019.

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Ben Macdhui (Gael. beinn-muc-dubh, ` mountain of the black sow '), a mountain of SW Aberdeenshire on the verge of the county, contiguous to Banff and Inverness shires, 11 geographical miles WNW of Castleton of Braemar- One of the Cairngorms, it culminates 3 miles S by W of Cairngorm proper (4084 feet), and is near other summits not much lower, forming strictly not one mountain, but only one amid a group of summits on a common base. Thus, though the highest point in Scotland except Ben Nevis, and only 110 feet lower than that mountain, it makes a far less conspicuous figure than many mountains of only one-half or one-third its height. Its altitude above sea-level is 4296 feet. The ascent (18 miles) from Castleton is made, after passing Derry Lodge (1386 feet), either up Glen Derry or up Glen Lui. The glorious view from the broad flat summit extends to Ben Wyvis, Ben Nevis, and Ben Glo; but Benabourd, on the E, shuts out the prospect of the German Ocean. Red granite is the prevailing rock, and numbers of rare minerals, particularly the fine rock crystals called Cairngorm stones, are found. The Queen and the Prince Consort twice made the ascent of Ben Macdhui on 7 Oct. 1859 and 24 Aug. 1860, as described on pp. 136-139 of the Queen's Journal (ed. 1877).—Ord. Sur., sh. 64, 1874.

An accompanying 19th C. Ordnance Survey map is available, or use the map tab to the right of this page.

Note: This text has been made available using a process of scanning and optical character recognition. Despite manual checking, some typographical errors may remain. Please remember this description dates from the 1880s; names may have changed, administrative divisions will certainly be different and there are known to be occasional errors of fact in the original text, which we have not corrected because we wish to maintain its integrity. This information is provided subject to our standard disclaimer

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