walkhighlands

Share your personal walking route experiences in Scotland, and comment on other peoples' reports.
Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.

Ben More and Stob Binnein - walking in a winter wonderland

Ben More and Stob Binnein - walking in a winter wonderland


Postby CurlyWurly » Mon Jan 25, 2010 11:10 am

Munros included on this walk: Ben More, Stob Binnein

Date walked: 24/01/2010

Time taken: 7 hours

Distance: 15 km

Ascent: 1382m

1 person thinks this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

Ben More has been on my ‘hit list’ for a while now and with a reasonable forecast this weekend I hoped to get to the top and get in some decent views. So at 6.15am I was driving through a foggy Dunfermline with high hopes of a great day in the hills.

Rather than climb it from Benmore Farm, I decided to park at the end of the Balquhidder Road and climb Stob Binnein via its South Ridge drop down into the bealach and then summit Ben More. On return I was hoping to retrace my steps back over Stob Binnein’s summit and Stob Coire an Lochain, then head eastwards and take in the Munro Top Meall na Dige from where I could descend the ridge of Am Mam back to the car.

Just as daylight was breaking I was driving along the Balquidder Road that hugs the shoreline of Loch Voil. With twists and turns, this is no road to take after a full Scottish breakfast and I was glad that I had no eaten the Cornish Pasty, wrapped in tin foil, sat invitingly on the passenger seat.

I arrived at the car-park and the good news was that there were no other cars parked. There is something about being the first person on the hills. This came as no surprise as I suspect that most people tackle Ben More and Stob Binnein from Benmore Farm.

Within ten minutes the Cornish Pasty had been devoured and I was fully kitted up and ready for the ‘off’. A signposted baggers’ path directs straight up the steep hillside to the north. I do not know whether I had overindulged on the mince pies over Christmas or the Pasty was lay awkwardly in my tummy, but this was one gruesome slog. It was with great relief to top out at 700m on Stob Invercarnaig where the steep ascent eased.

From here I could see the ridge clearly, broad at first then narrowing along Na Staidhrichean as it approaches Stob Coire an Locahian then a final push to the summit of Binnein. With blue skies and excellent visability, the last hours exertion was pushed to the back of mind as I pushed on. It was not long before walking poles were swapped for ice-axe and crampons and soon I was sat on top of Stob Coire an Lochian with a cup of hot vimto admiring the views.

View from Stob Coire an Lochan.jpg

Looking up to Stobb Binnein.jpg

Stobb Binnein Panorama 1.jpg


The final push to the summit of Stob Binnein did not seem to offer any issues and I remember the distinct path along the ridge in a guidebook. With a decent layer of snow I was offered no such luxury and conscious of the cornices, I decided to keep well to the left and snake round to the summit.

The views from the summit where amazing and in the distance I could see a small group of people ascending Ben More’s broad ridge. After a brief pitstop I descended Stob Binnein’s north ridge towards the bealach.

Stob Binnein Panorama 2.jpg

Stob Coire an Lochan from Stob Binnein.jpg

Ben More from Stobb Binnein.jpg


Clouds were sweeping in from the east so I pushed on down stopping to chat briefly to a couple of weary people trudging back up the opposite way.

Crossing the bealach I could just about see a group of people close to the top being engulfed in cloud. It looked like I was not going to be granted my wish of a cloud free summit and for a second I contemplated leaving Ben More for another day. But what if the cloud blows over and you have descended? With this in mind I pushed on up towards the top.

For a moment I thought my wish would come true as the wispy cloud opened up to reveal patches of blue sky. But it was not to be. As I approached the summit the door was shut firmly in my face. Wasting no time I hit the summit and descended immediately and within 50 metres of descent, the cloud opened to reveal some amazing views.

Descending Ben More.jpg

View from Ben More.jpg

Stob Binnein from Ben More Panorama.jpg


In the distance a long snake of people where heading up to the summit of Stob Binnein and eastwards I could see the Munro Top, Meall na Dige. I did not contemplate for long; there was no way I could face humping another 300 metres back up the north ridge of Stob Binnein just to take in a Munro Top. Instead I would descend the hillside of west of the bealach and head south along Inverlochlarig Glen where according to my map there was a land rover track that would lead me straight back to the car.

Due to the recent cold weather the ground was pretty frozen and not boggy as I thought it may be and I made good progress as I hugged the burn through the glen. It was with great relief that the land rover track appeared at exactly the point where the map said it would (why I had doubts that this would exist is beyond me, maybe tiredness and hunger do things to your mind).Another 30 minutes later I driving back along Loch Voil and there was still some daylight. And to make an amazing day even better whilst rummaging for a CD in the glove compartment, I found a huge bar of chocolate I did not realise I had. Happy days!


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

User avatar
CurlyWurly
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 137
Munros:282   Corbetts:42
Grahams:17   Donalds:33
Sub 2000:13   Hewitts:51
Wainwrights:50   
Joined: Aug 5, 2009
Location: Dalgety Bay, Fife

Re: Ben More and Stob Binnein - walking in a winter wonderland

Postby sloosh » Mon Jan 25, 2010 12:09 pm

A forgotten treasure, nothing better. :lol:

Great pics! Looks like you had a good day. How was the going underfoot on the way up? Crampons?
User avatar
sloosh
 
Posts: 1452
Munros:62   Corbetts:1
Joined: Apr 26, 2009
Location: Lost, probably.

Re: Ben More and Stob Binnein - walking in a winter wonderland

Postby CurlyWurly » Mon Jan 25, 2010 12:48 pm

Yeah it was a great day, the ground was really firm, I put on crampons on the ridge leading up to Stob Coire an Locahian. I was chatting to a lady on near the summit of Ben More and she said that one guy had tried to get to the top without crampons and had to turn back. The snow was just to frozen to kick steps in, crampons where a must
User avatar
CurlyWurly
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 137
Munros:282   Corbetts:42
Grahams:17   Donalds:33
Sub 2000:13   Hewitts:51
Wainwrights:50   
Joined: Aug 5, 2009
Location: Dalgety Bay, Fife

Re: Ben More and Stob Binnein - walking in a winter wonderland

Postby kevsbald » Mon Jan 25, 2010 1:04 pm

Wonderful photos of SB and the azure of the sky behind it. A classic photo.
User avatar
kevsbald
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 2148
Munros:260   Corbetts:114
Grahams:76   Donalds:51
Sub 2000:12   Hewitts:8
Wainwrights:15   
Joined: Jan 15, 2009
Location: Glasgow

Re: Ben More and Stob Binnein - walking in a winter wonderland

Postby Graeme D » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:31 pm

Sounds like you had a brilliant day and came away with some stunning photos. I'm hoping we get something similar next weekend! I had planned to do these two by a circuitous route round the back of SB then over to BM when I did them last summer but a combination of events on the morning in question conspired against me and I ended up doing the usual slog from Benmore Farm. It was a foul day as well! Just means I'll have to go back on a day like the one you got and do them the decent way. Oh well, if I must......
User avatar
Graeme D
 
Posts: 3453
Munros:215   Corbetts:102
Grahams:64   Donalds:22
Sub 2000:56   Hewitts:36
Wainwrights:27   Islands:6
Joined: Oct 17, 2008
Location: Perth

Re: Ben More and Stob Binnein - walking in a winter wonderland

Postby Paul Webster » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:34 pm

Stunning stuff - do you have a polariser?

Ten minutes to eat a cornish pasty - slacker! :lol:
User avatar
Paul Webster
Site Admin
Walker
 
Posts: 5221
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:64   Donalds:39
Sub 2000:113   Hewitts:133
Wainwrights:134   Islands:92
Joined: Jan 6, 2007
Location: Nr Grantown-on-Spey

Re: Ben More and Stob Binnein - walking in a winter wonderland

Postby sloosh » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:41 pm

Paul Webster wrote:Ten minutes to eat a cornish pasty - slacker! :lol:

:lol: Do you use intravenous ones?
User avatar
sloosh
 
Posts: 1452
Munros:62   Corbetts:1
Joined: Apr 26, 2009
Location: Lost, probably.

Re: Ben More and Stob Binnein - walking in a winter wonderland

Postby kinley » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:55 pm

Beautiful report - the ascent of Stob Binnein from the south is a corker. Looks a similar day to the one we got last year.

Cheers 8)
User avatar
kinley
 
Posts: 2898
Munros:282   Corbetts:215
Grahams:146   Donalds:25
Sub 2000:39   
Joined: May 12, 2009

Re: Ben More and Stob Binnein - walking in a winter wonderland

Postby CurlyWurly » Tue Jan 26, 2010 9:55 am

Paul Webster wrote:Stunning stuff - do you have a polariser?

Yes I have a circular polarizer that i used it on the photographs of Stobb Binnein. Really made the blues come out :)
Last edited by CurlyWurly on Tue Jan 26, 2010 9:58 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
CurlyWurly
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 137
Munros:282   Corbetts:42
Grahams:17   Donalds:33
Sub 2000:13   Hewitts:51
Wainwrights:50   
Joined: Aug 5, 2009
Location: Dalgety Bay, Fife

Re: Ben More and Stob Binnein - walking in a winter wonderland

Postby CurlyWurly » Tue Jan 26, 2010 9:58 am

Graeme Dewar wrote:Just means I'll have to go back on a day like the one you got and do them the decent way. Oh well, if I must......
Could have potential for a summer evening trip with the sunset experience on the summit!
User avatar
CurlyWurly
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 137
Munros:282   Corbetts:42
Grahams:17   Donalds:33
Sub 2000:13   Hewitts:51
Wainwrights:50   
Joined: Aug 5, 2009
Location: Dalgety Bay, Fife

Re: Ben More and Stob Binnein - walking in a winter wonderland

Postby Graeme D » Tue Jan 26, 2010 2:46 pm

CurlyWurly wrote:
Graeme Dewar wrote:Just means I'll have to go back on a day like the one you got and do them the decent way. Oh well, if I must......
Could have potential for a summer evening trip with the sunset experience on the summit!


Indeed.....
User avatar
Graeme D
 
Posts: 3453
Munros:215   Corbetts:102
Grahams:64   Donalds:22
Sub 2000:56   Hewitts:36
Wainwrights:27   Islands:6
Joined: Oct 17, 2008
Location: Perth

1 person thinks this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).



Walkhighlands community forum is now advert free

We need help to keep the site online.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by setting up a monthly donation by direct debit?



Return to Walk reports - Scotland

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 38 guests