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Double my tally with Ben Vane

Double my tally with Ben Vane


Postby Rossco » Sun Jun 26, 2011 1:25 am

Route description: Ben Vane, from Inveruglas

Munros included on this walk: Ben Vane

Date walked: 25/06/2011

Time taken: 4.5 hours

Distance: 11.3 km

Ascent: 920m

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Having done my first Munro in April, I eventually got round to doing my second today. Chose the smallest of all the Munros thinking it would be fairly easy but this Ben Vane is a steep wee hill.

Unfortunately, just like the last two weeks I've been out, there was A LOT of low cloud so views were completely non existant this time. I don't actually know what Ben Vane looks like in person as I could never see up past the grassy base. Nothing much to report about really but I'll add my tuppence worth anyway.

Started off at the Visitor Centre and was getting mauled by midges the second I stepped out the car so I quickly threw my boots on and set off about 11.30am expecting the round trip to take about 6 hours.

DSC03232.jpg
Power station.


As the walk report says, walk along the road past the power station for about a kilometre then turn right and under a railway bridge. It's a real easy start to the walk on a tarmac road for about 3km with virtually no ascent. You go from pretty much 0m to under 200m in 3km.

At this point I had zero view of anything about me. Vorlich to the right was covered, A'Chrois ahead to the left was also covered in cloud which disappointed me as I hear it's a beauty and of course Vane was also shrouded in mist so I couldn't actually tell what lay ahead for me. Not sure if I that was a good thing or a bad thing! :lol: Although I was in familiar territory as I've cycled in this area many a time, I just didn't appreciate the hills around me then so wouldn't have looked twice at all the beautiful surroundings before. Although to be honest, the views all around the bottom are completely spoiled by the second part of the power station you pass on your left and the hundreds of electricity pylons scattered about the hillside.

DSC03246.jpg
No view.


You eventually get to a bridge on your left hand side which you cross and continue up the gravel path for about half a kilometre. There is a big section of rocks on your right hand side and a bridge over a small river. You leave the path here and start the (very) boggy section!!

DSC03257.jpg
This way please!


DSC03258.jpg
Leave the track here!


Straight away you were treated to extremely thick pools of water and mud which had to be avoided if you didn't want to stick your whole foot underground. It was steep and boggy for a while, the main route was completely soaked so you could see people extending the path to the left and right for less worn and muddy approaches which helped. This whole area was pretty open so you could probably just go up any way you wanted without having to follow the path.

After a plateau about 300m it starts to get a bit rockier. The going is actually quite tough, I'd say it's the steepest hill I've done this year now surprisingly. Looking at the graph of the profile on my GPS certainly makes it seem that way too. I was also surprised by how busy it was. Considering it was another crappy day for hillwalking, I didn't expect to see so many people. I actually counted and seen a total of 26 people on the hill itself and more around the bottom too. I must have passed about 15 of these people going up too. I was shattered with how steep it was but just flew up at a good pace somehow until I hit the large rocky section near the top. A few people were already on it and couldn't find their way to begin with but pointed me in the right direction and that was another group overtaken! :lol: It was a fun section to scramble up too which I wasn't expecting.

DSC03270.jpg
Scramble time!!


Then finally onto the summit in a time of 2 hours. I wasn't rushing as I see no point in that but there was nothing really to stop for as their were no views and was on my own so no-one to slow me down. Hung about at the summit for some lunch with a few other groups, we all took shelter on the north face of the hill from the strong wind at the top. There was actually a running competition going on today too which I spoke to someone at the summit about. I think he said they were starting at Succoth, going up Ben Vorlich, then onto Vane, then across to Ime and Narnairn, then down the steep front face of Narnain to finish. I could be wrong there but it sounded absolutely hellish and he had already fallen and given himself a bad looking gash on the shin but I didn't see anyone else behind him for a good half hour or so, so he was possibly leading the pack by miles since he had only clocked up two hours so far! :shock:

DSC03272.jpg
Summit.


DSC03273.jpg
Top of Munro number 2!


Pretty much same story going back down, very misty so couldn't see anything. At times the cloud was trying to clear and I could see small sections of A'Chrois but never enough to actually get a good proper sense of what it was like. Descending some of the steep rocky faces was quite difficult as some of them appear to be almost vertical which was tricky in the wet. Then onto the boggy sections again which were alot worse going down, I actually had two proper slips but SOMEHOW managed to not fall on my bum, just landed on all fours in what can only be described as a contortion of positions you'd see when playing a drunken game of Twister! :lol: Thankfully no-one was there to see me though... I hope!

Back onto the tarmac road, I took one last look before going round the corner and eventually seen what looked like parts of the summit through the cloud. Very annoying to not see anything all day but still an enjoyable walk on a good hill with some exciting scrambling sections at the very top. Just a pity about the long flat walk at the start and end. I would maybe take my bike for that part it if I done it again which would give you an awesome smooth downhill road to fly down to finish the day. Finished it in 4 hours 31 minutes. Was a good test of my fitness which I somehow stood up to. Even though my old knee was completely done in at the end!

2 Munros down, 281 to go.

DSC03291.jpg
First glimpse of the top.


Link to EveryTrail website trip report.
http://www.everytrail.com/view_trip.php?trip_id=1156938


Ben-Vane.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts

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Rossco
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby kev_russ » Sun Jun 26, 2011 1:14 pm

Good effort there Rosco. No done Vane yet but thinking i'll leave it till sunnier days.
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby Paul_Antonia » Sun Jun 26, 2011 4:01 pm

Nice report and pics on what looked like a proper mucky day in the hills. We are planning to start our bagging this summer and are currently building some basic fitness in preparation. Our plan is to complete three Munro's by the end of summer and if posible all of the "Alps" and Ben Lomond.
We keep reading these reports to whet ( or should that be wet? ) our appetite and give us inspiration so thanks for all the info.
Hope the old knee is ok. On to number three next then......
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby Rossco » Tue Jun 28, 2011 12:54 am

Cheers, if you are just starting out and wanting to do Ben Vane then I would wait until it's a bit drier as it was just completely sodden! :lol: Plently other less boggy hills about hopefully.
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Rossco
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby Paula Hubens » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:49 pm

Rossco wrote: until I hit the large rocky section near the top. A few people were already on it and couldn't find their way to begin with but pointed me in the right direction and that was another group overtaken! :lol: It was a fun section to scramble up too which I wasn't expecting.


Nice one Rossco! I quite liked the scrambly bits as well.
Good luck with your third!
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby Merry-walker » Tue Jun 28, 2011 11:06 pm

Excellent stuff Rossco. Had many a "Twister moments myself" :lol:
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby Graeme D » Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:40 am

Now Rossco, see what you've started. If you want to double the old Munro tally now, yer gonna have to do another TWO of the buggers, and so it goes on. There's no saying where it'll end! :lol: Good effort though on what is most definitely a tricky wee bugger of a hill - certainly belies it's lowly status in the rankings. I did it two summers ago and by the time I was summitin, the thunder was rolling around good style overhead. That was also the day a fighter jet ploughed into nearby Beinn an Lochain. Glad I hadn't fancied a Corbett that day!
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby Rossco » Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:55 am

Jeez, I heard about that jet crash. Lucky decision!

Yeah, I'm well ahead of you on the doubling tally Graeme!! I've pencilled in Ben Lui & Beinn a'Chleibh for my next jaunt keeping up the doubling. I even considered TRIPLING it and going for 4, but couldn't find anything relatively close and easy enough for me in my delicate state to manage. :lol:
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby Jabber » Wed Jun 29, 2011 8:18 pm

Great Report Ross

It was precarious up there and a sturdy foot was required. It was the first time I have seen my wife in action with the sticks and I'm almost persuaded to purchase a set. My mate keeps banging on about Ben Lui..maybe on my shopping list this weekend if the weather holds, although I seem to be colouring in the peaks from the South. Might give Amber a wee break (she was a bit tired the next day!). :)
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby Jabber » Wed Jun 29, 2011 8:22 pm

Oh and I forgot...the midge at Inverglas were on complete vampire mode when we got back to the rather empty car park....stay time there was seconds and they carried on attacking(in car) all the way to Bonhill...lol
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby Rossco » Wed Jun 29, 2011 11:50 pm

Haha same here. I think that's the only place I've been so bothered by the midge! :lol:

I've been borrowing someone elses stick, so I'm definitely going to get a pair for myself too. Makes the descent so much less painful! :D
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Rossco
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby monty » Thu Jun 30, 2011 8:01 am

Nice report Rossco, Its a small hill but it has everything :D I keep repeating myself on these reports but, shame about the clag :lol: :lol:
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby ChrisW » Thu Jun 30, 2011 9:01 am

Great effort Rossco, shame the clag beat you to the top; that race you mention sounds like an absolute nightmare (its hard enough walking up the damn hills :lol: ) As for the drunken twister.......that's my kind of game :D
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby garyjNLYNWA » Thu Jun 30, 2011 10:27 pm

Well done mate. Quiqk question. Can you climb Vane, Ime and Narnain in the one go? Done Vorlich today and had a ball. A great walk.
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Re: Double my tally with Ben Vane

Postby Paul_Antonia » Sat Jul 23, 2011 10:43 am

We'd be interested to hear about that too. I keep looking at the map and wondering. I'm tentatively thinking about a couple of days in that area with a wild camp into the bargain. Maybe in a couple of years time, although it would be a revisit because we are hoping to bag these peaks this summer.
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