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.

Big and Wee Aonach

Big and Wee Aonach


Postby Donald Beaton » Fri May 28, 2010 9:24 pm

Route description: Aonach Beag and Aonach Mor from Glen Nevis

Munros included on this walk: Aonach Beag (Nevis Range), Aonach Mor

Date walked: 03/05/2010

Time taken: 8 hours

Distance: 16 km

Ascent: 1376m

Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

I've been using this site for about a year to get walking routes and also reading the reports so I thought I should really contribute one of my own.

This was one of my favourite walks so far.

I arrived in the car park after a 3 and a half hour drive at about 9 o'clock where the weather was pretty cloudy and a few rain showers. Quite disappointing after the forecast of brilliant weather.

Made my way along the Nevis Gorge with rain falling and my hopes for great weather dwindling.

Arrived at the Steall ruins to this scene.

IMG_2827.JPG
Steall ruins


I started the long slog up to Sgurr a' Bhuic with waterproofs on and after one last heavy rain/hail shower the sun came out and the layers started to disappear into my bag. After one last push through a boulder field I arrived at the summit of Sgurr a' Bhuic to astounding views.

IMG_2828.JPG
Ben Nevis


IMG_2830.JPG
Ring of Steall


IMG_2839.JPG
Glencoe hills


IMG_2847.JPG
Grey Corries


Next up was a little bit of downhill on loose stones before the start of the long climb up to Aonach Beag. It was a really easy climb because the views were just fantastic so it was easy to forget the steep climb.

IMG_2850.JPG


On the final push up to Aonach Beag a helicopter landed on Ben Nevis for a few minutes kicking up a huge amount of snow before taking off before flying away. Don't know if it was picking someone up or not.

IMG_2854.JPG
Helicopter


Reached the summit of Aonach Beag - (I say summit - but the cairn had disappeared under a layer of the white stuff so I may have missed the summit. Hopefully not though!) - where I was met with even more fantastic views.

IMG_2857.JPG
Out to sea


After a brief stop on Aonach Beag for photos I pushed on down to the bealach before the final climb to Aonach Mor. I had a long break here with loads of photos. A couple of people on skis passed here although I don't think they would get a lot of skiing. The only widespread snow cover stopped at about 1100m.

IMG_2863.JPG
Loch Eil


Schiehallion stood out on the horizon

IMG_2865.JPG
Schiehallion


IMG_2867.JPG
Ben Nevis


I finally left the summit and headed down looking for the path heading down towards Carn Mor Dearg. This was the most uncomfortable descent I've ever done - very steep, loose with a few patches of snow thrown into the mix.

IMG_2873.JPG
The descent - ahhhhh!


The route description describes a bogfest on the way back down to Glen Nevis but I found it not too bad but when there has been rain it is probably very wet.

You get brilliant views towards the Mamores all the way down which makes the descent pleasant.

IMG_2881.JPG
The Mamores


There are also some nice small waterfalls which make good photo opportunities.

IMG_2884.JPG
Waterfall


The rest of the descent passed quickly and it was reasonably warm when I reached the Steall Falls for some more photos.

IMG_2896.JPG
The Steall Falls


The walk back to the car was fantastic - I don't think I'll ever tire walking through the Nevis Gorge.

I got back roughly 8 hours after leaving the car which included plenty of breaks

All in all, a brilliant walk!

IMG_2919.JPG
Nevis Gorge
User avatar
Donald Beaton
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 7
Munros:159   Corbetts:38
Grahams:40   Donalds:58
Sub 2000:11   Hewitts:2
Joined: Aug 17, 2009
Location: Inverness

Re: Big and Wee Aonach

Postby Stretch » Fri May 28, 2010 9:40 pm

Donald Beaton wrote:All in all, a brilliant walk!


And a brilliant report to match. Those are some good pics you've got Donald, looking to do these two this summer, hopefully on a nice day.
User avatar
Stretch
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1714
Munros:146   Corbetts:8
Sub 2000:2   
Joined: Jun 15, 2009
Location: Morristown, Tennessee

Re: Big and Wee Aonach

Postby mountain coward » Sat May 29, 2010 8:58 am

My you were lucky with the weather! I did a similar walk onto Aonach Beag in winter and got cr*p views 'cos it was quite claggy - the views should have been stunning (as your pics show)! I've always wondered what that rib/descent between Aonach Mor and CMD was like - it looks horrifically steep for descent - perhaps I'll try an ascent of it one day - I don't mind steep and loose going up. Thanks for that pic though - never realised there was a path down it...
mountain coward
 

Re: Big and Wee Aonach

Postby monty » Sat May 29, 2010 10:05 am

Good first report Donald.
I like the picture out to loch Eil with loads of Corbetts in view along with Sgurr Thuilm on the right. Looks like a scary descent :lol:
monty
 

Re: Big and Wee Aonach

Postby kevsbald » Mon May 31, 2010 12:23 pm

Donald, would it be possible to do a high camp between Sgurr Choinnich Mhor and Sgurr a Bhuic? fancy this.
User avatar
kevsbald
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 2129
Munros:257   Corbetts:112
Grahams:74   Donalds:51
Sub 2000:12   Hewitts:8
Wainwrights:15   
Joined: Jan 15, 2009
Location: Glasgow

Re: Big and Wee Aonach

Postby Donald Beaton » Mon May 31, 2010 10:57 pm

Kevsbald - It looks like it would be possible for a camp on the slopes of Sgurr Choinnich Beag. There is quite a lot of flat ground although there didn't look like there was a very good water source.

That's just the impression from photos but I hope that helps.
User avatar
Donald Beaton
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 7
Munros:159   Corbetts:38
Grahams:40   Donalds:58
Sub 2000:11   Hewitts:2
Joined: Aug 17, 2009
Location: Inverness

Re: Big and Wee Aonach

Postby mountain coward » Mon May 31, 2010 11:08 pm

there's quite a bit of level ground on the col which would be fine for camping - can't remember where the nearest water would be though... but then you always carry a tanker with you don't you? :lol:
mountain coward
 

Re: Big and Wee Aonach

Postby kevsbald » Tue Jun 01, 2010 8:26 am

3 litres in the bag every time. H2O not an issue. Thanks for the comments chaps, that is a must-do for me.
User avatar
kevsbald
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 2129
Munros:257   Corbetts:112
Grahams:74   Donalds:51
Sub 2000:12   Hewitts:8
Wainwrights:15   
Joined: Jan 15, 2009
Location: Glasgow

Re: Big and Wee Aonach

Postby mountain coward » Wed Jun 02, 2010 12:23 am

It was 4 for the Tarf Trip! :D
mountain coward
 

Re: Big and Wee Aonach

Postby kevsbald » Wed Jun 02, 2010 8:21 am

Yes = never again on that amount. Though it did come in handy after the whisky imbibement.
User avatar
kevsbald
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 2129
Munros:257   Corbetts:112
Grahams:74   Donalds:51
Sub 2000:12   Hewitts:8
Wainwrights:15   
Joined: Jan 15, 2009
Location: Glasgow

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