The chimney stack of Faindouran Lodge bothy in the Cairngorms has collapsed, resulting in significant damage to the roof and walls of the building. The bothy is now in a dangerous condition and should not be used for the time being, say the Mountain Bothies Association (MBA).
The damage to the bothy in Glen Avon (NJ081062) was reported to the charity by site user Gary Dickson (username whogotbeaker):
'Three of us got there last Thursday night to discover the gable end wall had gone - revealing a very lonely looking chair (which probably gives a good view to anyone sat on it!)' Gary told us.
'We guessed it was fairly recent as there was no mention in the bothy book (though there had been a party of six in the previous night) and the upper floor didn't seem to have that much snow in it yet. It probably happened during the storms earlier that week, at a guess.'
'Downstairs was still water tight - just some water dripping down the loft hatch and the chimney - so we slept there. With hindsight, we should have kipped over the road in the other building - but it wasn't as cosy! We could hear what sounded like small stones falling down the chimney through the night (possibly it was ice, but it was dark and imaginations are better in the dark).'
The MBA will make a site visit as soon as possible to assess the damage. In the meantime there's no need to do what Gary and Co. did; with the agreement of the estate, the adjacent Pony Shed about 20 yards from the main lodge can be used as accommodation instead, say the MBA.
An update will be posted on the MBA website.