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BEN MORE (MULL) awesome!

BEN MORE (MULL) awesome!

Postby blueyed » Sat May 28, 2011 10:39 am

Route description: Ben More via A' Chioch and Beinn Fhada

Munros included on this walk: Ben More (Mull)

Grahams included on this walk: Beinn Fhada

Date walked: 30/04/2011

Time taken: 7 hours

Distance: 14.5 km

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we planned to walk ben more on 29/4 but after we arrived to the car park it was almost impossible to get off the car due to really high winds. there were some cars but i guess people walked the easy route taking into account the weather conditions.. and we were really desperate to walk via a'chioch therefore we decided to postpone hillwalk and go to iona instead (report from iona http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/Forum/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=11932 AND HERE http://around-scotland.blogspot.com/search/label/iona)
we tried ben more on the next day and it was a good decission, we were successfull.

we left uisken beach (where we camped) quite early, had a breakfast in pennyghale and arrived to dhiseig car park about 10am. weather conditions were much better than on previous day therefore we decided to bag the munro.
just in case we walked up following the easy track and if conditions up were good enough we would descent via a'chioch & the arete.

the track to ben more goes via a country rd, then stony path, then kind of gorge, and when the gorge ends you can choose to follow the faint path (more on your left) or just go ahead up (follow sheep paths) which turn into a well defined path later on, it even is marked with a series of small cairns. we took option 2, but there was a couple who walked more-less the same speed as us and they took the path to the left; we arrived to coire nam fuaran exactly the same time - so it makes no difference whatsoever, whichever path you choose.

from coire nam fuaran, the path becomes a bit steep, on loose stones, until the summit.
the walk up took us 3 hrs exactly, with some breaks to take pics. the summit was really busy, therefore we decided not to have a break there with the crowd and start the descent immediately.

we chose the descent via a'chioch. i must say that before we went to mull i read the reports from this walk here on WH, which were a bit scary actually. yes- descent from ben more summit towards a'chioch is steep, yes - there are loose stones and scree, but if you're not affraid of open space and have some common sense you'll be all right and there's nothing to worry about. of course, for strong-headed guys the descent (or ascent) would be on the very top of the ridge, we took one of many paths going just below and it was perfectly safe and stress-free. there is some scrambling but i sorted it all out sliding down on my bum (which resulted with a large hole in my trousers)

although a'chioch looks like a good, big mountain from ben more, as we approached it becomed smaller and we reached it quite quickly. on a'chioch we met a group of walkers with an injured person who called for rescue helicopter - the rescue guys arrived after about 1 hr and the strong wind made their action pretty difficult, i think they tried at least 3 times before they managed to 'send a rescuer down' for the injured person.

descent from a'chioch is a lot of easy scramble again and as we reached the lowest point between a'chioch and beinn fhada we walked down to the glen, along the stream, so we didnt walk up to beinn fhada.

i know from many sources that the glen usually is a swamp-like, but we were lucky - it hadnt rained on mull for more than a week before we arrived and the glen was reasonably dry with only few wetter places. and it's a long walk thru that glen (gleann na beinne fada). there are many paths again, following any of them would be fine as they all end up at the same place (more-less), we just took a direction down and didnt really follow any path in particular we just made sure that we followed the stream running along the glen. in some guides it says to walk on the left hand side along the stream, in some to walk on the right. it doesnt matter - there are places where you can cross the stream (even when it runs deep in the gorge) so no worries.

we reached beinn fhada car park just within 7 hrs.

the last thing - from the car park below beinn fhada to the dhiseig car park where we left our car is about 40-50 mins walk. we were lucky, we got a lift from a fellow walker :)

it was absolutely great day out, full excitement, awesome views and that feeling that we achieved something. that totally turned me on for climbing rocky mountains with scrambling and all that :) so far, ben more is my fav scottish mountain, first chance i have, i'm back there.

more pictures here: http://around-scotland.blogspot.com/2011/05/ben-more-isle-of-mull.html
B8035, driving to the dhiseig car park
here we are, first walked on a country rd towards the cottage, then turn right just before the cottage, there is a sign saying 'walk up' or sth like that
loch na'keal - sound of ulva & ulva
from coire nam fuaran towards ulva
path to the summit, loose stones, it gets a wee bit steeper
yeah, it gets steeper just here
from ben more summit looking east, towards a'chioch
a'chioch & the traverse
the arete - as you can see on the pic - there are people walking below the ridge and there is a guy walking just on very top of it. both ways are great experience
from ben more summit looking west towards iona
brrrr cold and windy, lets go down!
crowded summit of ben more. most walkers walked down the 'tourist' path. in general hardly anyone descended via a'chioch but there were some guys ascending this way.
descent from ben more towards a'chioch; some well defined paths
ben more summit from the arete
the arete with a'chioch (far right)
ben more and the traverse
summit of a'chioch, towards ben more
from a'chioch looking east- towards oban
torn trousers and broken pole -result of bum sliding down :)
rescue helicopter arived
a'chioch & ben more from gleann na beinne fada
walk down along the stream in gleann na beinne fada
spiky ben more from dhiseig car park
dead but happy!
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Re: BEN MORE (MULL) awesome!

Postby monty » Sat May 28, 2011 1:15 pm

Excellent report Blueeyed. What a great set of photos you took. The ridge looks good. Shame about the bun slide though :lol:

Re: BEN MORE (MULL) awesome!

Postby andyroog » Sat May 28, 2011 4:11 pm

What a great report not just a walk an adventure for sure. good weather, really great phots,and a very well done :D
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Re: BEN MORE (MULL) awesome!

Postby blueyed » Sat May 28, 2011 5:47 pm

monty, bum sliding is my fav way of descent when there's scrambling involved and i'm not sure whether it's better to go face to the rock or just look around and admire views :)
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Re: BEN MORE (MULL) awesome!

Postby ChrisW » Sat May 28, 2011 7:20 pm

Great report blueyed and some fantastic photo's, well worth clicking the link :D
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Re: BEN MORE (MULL) awesome!

Postby Lowlight » Sat May 28, 2011 7:33 pm

Great pics and report. This might just have went to the top of my to-do list (which is very long).
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Re: BEN MORE (MULL) awesome!

Postby mband » Sat May 28, 2011 10:17 pm

Heading here in a couple of weeks time so great to read your report and the pictures are inspiring. Hope we get as good weather and views :)
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Re: BEN MORE (MULL) awesome!

Postby pollyh33 » Sat May 28, 2011 11:13 pm

Fantastic report. :D

Nothing wrong with bumsliding, its the safest way :lol: :lol:
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