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Ben Nevis

Re: Ben Nevis

Postby Alex W » Mon Sep 13, 2021 4:22 pm

I'm not sure I favour dissing any of our mountains in Scotland and certainly not Nevis - the mightiest of them all. If you're half way up .5 gully in the depths of winter, the crowds at the top will be the last thing on your mind.

The sight of the CMD arete and the Northern Corrie is majestic. The sight of "The Ben" in every view from the hills around Loch Laggan is just a reminder of its omnipotence.

The fact is has a path to its summit which is without technical difficulty is a testament to the sense of inclusivity befitting the highest peak in Scotland.

OK, so I'm romanticising, but there's more to The Ben than the "tourist path" and you see what you want to see. But I agree, I would choose to climb it at a time and by a method which avoids the crowds.
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Re: Ben Nevis

Postby simon-b » Mon Sep 13, 2021 5:19 pm

Alex W wrote:I'm not sure I favour dissing any of our mountains in Scotland and certainly not Nevis - the mightiest of them all. If you're half way up .5 gully in the depths of winter, the crowds at the top will be the last thing on your mind.

The sight of the CMD arete and the Northern Corrie is majestic. The sight of "The Ben" in every view from the hills around Loch Laggan is just a reminder of its omnipotence.

The fact is has a path to its summit which is without technical difficulty is a testament to the sense of inclusivity befitting the highest peak in Scotland.

OK, so I'm romanticising, but there's more to The Ben than the "tourist path" and you see what you want to see. But I agree, I would choose to climb it at a time and by a method which avoids the crowds.

Definitely agree in not dissing Nevis. Even the mountain track is OK as a descent route. The same thing's true about a lot of 'tourist' mountains: Ben Lomond, Coniston Old Man, Helvellyn, Snowdon etc. There are some great ways to climb all of these, and the tourist routes can be used as convenient ways down, often with better views in front than when used for ascent.
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Re: Ben Nevis

Postby tolkienabouthills » Mon Sep 13, 2021 5:25 pm

simon-b wrote: The same thing's true about a lot of 'tourist' mountains: Ben Lomond, Coniston Old Man, Helvellyn, Snowdon etc. There are some great ways to climb all of these, and the tourist routes can be used as convenient ways down, often with better views in front than when used for ascent.


Interestingly I did the Coniston horseshoe a few years back during early February and only saw one person, a fell runner, during the whole walk. Excellent fells, and I can only assume the crowds are limited to the high season.
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Re: Ben Nevis

Postby WalkWithWallace » Mon Sep 13, 2021 6:37 pm

jmarkb wrote:
WalkWithWallace wrote:Ben Lomond is the most popular Munro by the way


Do you have a source for that? The estimates I can find online suggest 30,000 ascents per year for Ben Lomond and 150,000 for Ben Nevis.


I might be wrong on that one mate, maybe it's just the most popular on WH, rather than on the whole. Nevertheless, still a busy Munro. 8)
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Re: Ben Nevis

Postby Sgurr » Mon Sep 13, 2021 6:47 pm

Far preferred the Can Mor Dearg Arrete way, though wasn't expecting to repeat it when a friend compleated on Carn Mor Dearg. Having postponed this due to torrential rain on his penultimate Munro, we joked that nothing could stop him this time. However he could hardly walk when he got up in the morning, so when we said "What now?" at the summit, expecting "We'll just go down, " I WASN'T expecting "Think we might just amble across to the Ben." Suddenly had to re-focus. Worth the repeat, but I wouldn't repeat the tourist track.
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Re: Ben Nevis

Postby AJ01 » Tue Sep 14, 2021 2:26 pm

tolkienabouthills wrote:Nowt wrong with Ben Nevis if you do it via one of the quieter routes. I did the route via Càrn Mòr Dearg a few years back and didn't see a soul until the summit plateau (this was in mid August), great ridge walking and the pony track made for a decent enough descent route. If it were in Cumbria it'd be one of the best walks in Lakeland, it's only across the glen from the wonder of the Mamores that it pales a little bit in comparison. All that to say I wouldn't tell anyone to discount doing it entirely, just choose your day and your route carefully, and if you have limited time then favour some of the other mountains in the glen.


That's how I did it for my second ascent, and I only saw one or two people until the summit, which still wasn't crowded - this was in May. (I also recommend Tower Ridge if you can rock-climb at VDiff standard - though best with a guide who knows the route and has a 16foot sling to protect the move down into Tower Gap.)

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Re: Ben Nevis

Postby gman » Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:39 pm

AJ01 wrote:(I also recommend Tower Ridge if you can rock-climb at VDiff standard - though best with a guide who knows the route and has a 16foot sling to protect the move down into Tower Gap.)


Just to be a wee bit pedantic, TR is a Diff and feels low in the grade. Gary Latter rates it comparable to North Buttress on the Buachaille for difficulty which I think is fair. When we were on it this summer there were a couple of guided groups and everyone else was soloing - always an interesting moment when you hear folk chatting on the summit as you descend the gap!
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Re: Ben Nevis

Postby garyoppolis » Wed Sep 15, 2021 11:51 am

I refused to let the Mrs climb Ben Nevis (my parents still live in Fort William so we're there fairly often) until she was ready for the CMD arete. Once she did and we were trotting down the tourist path her only comment on it was "I'm pleased we didn't come up this way".

It's fine enough, and you still get the views, but it doesn't really do the Ben justice.
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Re: Ben Nevis

Postby Coulags » Wed Sep 15, 2021 10:14 pm

The Ben is a magnificent hill as we all know .
It really is a no brainer to get to it from the CMD arête then return via the CMD . Exhilarating stuff . Plus there is the bonus of only having a brief mingle with the great unwashed at the summit :wink:
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Re: Ben Nevis

Postby gman » Thu Sep 16, 2021 1:59 pm

We're all the great unwashed on the Ben next to Dave MacLeod :wink:

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Re: Ben Nevis

Postby Coulags » Thu Sep 16, 2021 9:32 pm

What an athlete he is 8)
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Re: Ben Nevis

Postby AJ01 » Fri Sep 24, 2021 5:07 pm

gman wrote:
AJ01 wrote:(I also recommend Tower Ridge if you can rock-climb at VDiff standard - though best with a guide who knows the route and has a 16foot sling to protect the move down into Tower Gap.)


Just to be a wee bit pedantic, TR is a Diff and feels low in the grade. Gary Latter rates it comparable to North Buttress on the Buachaille for difficulty which I think is fair. When we were on it this summer there were a couple of guided groups and everyone else was soloing - always an interesting moment when you hear folk chatting on the summit as you descend the gap!


I was going from my inaccurate memory - thanks for the correction.
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Re: Ben Nevis

Postby rohan » Sun Sep 26, 2021 9:02 pm

Reading the few negative views on The Ben on Trip advisor is quite amusing but Trip Advisor suggests 1-2 hours for the trip which given the record for running it is 1 hr 25 mins 34 secs (men) and 1 hr 45 mins 01 secs (women) is very misleading for the many people who do it with no previous hill walking experience.
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