Page 1 of 1

Ben Nevis via Carn Mor Dearg Arete

PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2011 2:17 pm
by michaelmcp
I read a report on here at the beginning of April for climbing Nevis via the Carn Mor Dearg Arete and I thought instantly - I have to do that. Probably bit off more than I can chew given I had only climbed Ben Lomond and the Cobbler twice each up until now but I'm relatively fit so thought I was capable.
Knowing that the weather was going to be great, I drove up from Glasgow early Saturday morning to get a space in the already busy Glen Nevis Visitor Centre car park.
Starting off the walk in such beautiful conditions was all you could ask for, with great views up Glen Nevis towards Stob Ban.
Glen Nevis.jpg

There was quite a few people making their way up, and also making their way down - surely they hadn't been up top and nearly back down again by 10am ?!!?
Anyhow, I carried on until the split in the path near Loch Meall an t-Suidhe. At this point, I started to question what I was doing. I turned off the tourist route, going left, and everyone bar none turned right. I have to admit I felt a little nervous at this point. A few hundred yards on, I came across a crowd of walkers sheltered down against the wind eating their sandwiches. This was reassuring - I wasn't the only fool to be going this way today. Continuing on round behind the Carn Dearg buttresses the wind really picked up by that by no means was the biggest challenge. That was yet to come. I made my way along to the lodge at the base of the North Face and considered my options for crossing the stream. Bridge made out of scaffold beam or stone path ? I chose stone path. Scaffold beam didn't look like it would pass a H&S inspection...
scaffold bridge.jpg

Once across the stream, the climb up Carn Mor Dearg was relentless. Taking a breather halfway up, I spotted a few others spread about the slope, all looking as if they wished they had taken the easier route up the mountain path.
Pushing on I got to the top, had a chat with a few others up then continued on down the arete. This was a beautiful site.
CMD Arete.jpg

I did curse it though, having climbed 1220m, I now had to drop down before climbing again. The walk across the arete wasn't too bad, low level scrambling, but with a strong wind a wee bit care and attention was in order. Once across the arete, the scramble up to the summit of Nevis was similar to the scramble up Carn Mor Dearg, but not quite as long. Finally I got to the top, and I have to admit, it was a bit of an anti-climax due to the amount of people there - at least a hundred I would guess, with more piling up. The views though, were outstanding, and because I had a great view of the North Face on my way round, I had a great sense of the danger that lay near the edge of the north side of the summit.

All in all, it was a beautiful day for climbing, and I climbed a Munro I've always wanted to climb, although with a bit more challenge than I anticipated !!

Re: Ben Nevis via Carn Mor Dearg Arete

PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2011 7:28 pm
by skuk007
NIce one Michael. I haven't done it this way yet but I'd imagine once you have then there is no other way to the top. :)
Wonder if anyone has returned the same way or do you think everyone takes the tourist route back down?

Re: Ben Nevis via Carn Mor Dearg Arete

PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2011 11:36 pm
by michaelmcp
I wouldn't recommend going back down from Nevis by the Arete route as there was a lot of loose rock on the slope of Carn Mor Dearg and it is a pretty steep slope. However, there may be another way down that I don't know of.

Re: Ben Nevis via Carn Mor Dearg Arete

PostPosted: Sun May 08, 2011 6:05 pm
by maryhillmoose
Great report and pics too, Ive just posted my own on this route. A few people were coming down from the summit as we reached the boulder field at the other side of the ridge...shuffling down on their bums for the most part. Im not sure how I would have felt meeting someone coming in the other direction at the half way point on the ridge!!!